Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-02-2012, 07:27 AM   #61
Full time employment: Posting here.
Badger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 825
We are fortunate to have a Navy base with commisary within a couple of miles so I rarely go into a Publix or WD grocery store. We do, however, go to Costco 1 or 2 times a week if just for lunch before a movie. I find the Kirkland brand of just about any item to be equal to or better than most brand name items. The place is clean and the employees are cheerful. They also have a great bakery (during the fall I usually buy quite a few of their very large and tasty pumpkin pies at $6).

My AmEx card pays for the membership each year and then some.

I was so impressed with their quality products, treatment of employees, and method of doing business that I bought stock 4 years ago and it has doubled since that time. That may not be a good return on my investment but I am pleased enough. Wish I had bought more.
__________________

__________________
Badger is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 12-02-2012, 09:21 AM   #62
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 331
Quote:
Originally Posted by audreyh1 View Post
Get a buddy that has a membership to take you in and see. And you can pay for stuff yourself (AMEX, debit card or cash) on your friend's membership card. That's why they let my cousins do.

Our local costco will NOT allow anyone but the member to pay for stuff.... I had to buy my own membership after trying a couple of times to shop with my aunt. It has been money well spent, I really love Costco!
__________________

__________________
JustMeUC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2012, 09:39 AM   #63
Moderator Emeritus
Bestwifeever's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 16,375
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustMeUC

Our local costco will NOT allow anyone but the member to pay for stuff.... I had to buy my own membership after trying a couple of times to shop with my aunt. It has been money well spent, I really love Costco!
You can just pay your friend.
__________________
“Would you like an adventure now, or would you like to have your tea first?” J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan
Bestwifeever is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2012, 11:07 AM   #64
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,617
Quote:
Originally Posted by NW-Bound View Post
And talk about food in Hawaii, in my recent visit to Kona, as we stayed in a timeshare and had a kitchen, we did some grocery shopping at the local Costco as well as a couple of smaller grocery stores. My, veggies and fruits were expensive!
Even on the big island where there's more land, I think the higher labor rate is a reason locally grown food is expensive. Driving across California, where one sees fruit and nut orchards extending to the horizon, one must ask how many workers are needed to tend to all those trees and pick the harvest. Yes, the cheap immigrant laborers, whether legal or illegal, must be a main reason our mainland food is so cheap, compared to that in Hawaii as well as European countries.
A side note: Why is gasoline only $3.99 at Kona Costco, which is less expensive than in California? Something is very wrong! And I mean the higher price in California, not the lower price in Hawaii, of course.
The Hawaii Visitors & Conventions Bureau thanks you for paying tourist prices!

You need to spend more time here. Or buy more SPAM.

Hawaii has significant issues with immigrant labor. It's not just a Mainland phenomenon, and a migrant worker's wages buy a lot less housing here. Local farmers only grow the crops that they can get to market with less labor than Mainland/international shipping. Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia did a great job of killing local pineapple and sugar cane (which was struggling even in the 19th century), and the same economics are at work for the rest of the farming community. Even local dairies and egg producers are perpetually on the brink of bankruptcy. Think about how much of that Big Island land you saw lying fallow because it's lava, or too rocky, or too much slope, or not enough water. If the state and land trusts could turn that property into farmland they'd have done it decades ago. We don't have any better solutions than California or Texas or Florida or any other big agricultural states.

Gas is Costco's loss-leader. Hawaii Costco stores are the state's #1 gasoline sellers (despite being outnumbered by gas stations at least 10:1), and they're even priced below military bases. Our local Costco actually ripped up parking lot to install more gas pumps so that people could spend less time in line and more time in the store. Ours doesn't waste any infrastructure on water spigots or vacuum cleaners or car washes or other "maintenance", and the only reason they offer air is because of the tire sales. It's all about getting people on the property so that they'll do a little shopping.

Veggies & fruits: If I went to a Mainland grocery store for my papaya, mango, lychee, tangerine, mandarin oranges, macadamia nuts, bok choy, sprouts, Okinawan sweet potato... I'd go broke. Yet I'm a little embarrassed to be seen buying them in local stores when they're so easy to grow at home. Meanwhile cow's milk, potatoes, grapes, raspberries, blueberries, and even apples can be horribly expensive-- especially out of season-- because they're "Mainland" products that locals might not generate much demand for. But strawberries & tomatoes are popular here, and they're easily grown by local farms.

Kona is probably the most expensive part of the Big Island. (Try Hilo or Puna.) The Costco is aggressively priced, as are the island's Wal-Marts and Home Depots. Most thrifty shoppers buy their veggies and fruits at farmer's markets, and I'm not sure where to look for one in Kona. But to afford to shop in the local grocery stores, residents make heavy use of the local affinity cards and sales flyers. If you're paying list price at Times or Safeway or Star Markets or Foodland, you're subsidizing everybody else.

It's not just military benefits. Among Costco, Wal-Mart, farmer's markets, and gardening, I'm not sure that there's any reason to go to a local grocery chain. People are shopping at local grocery stores for the loss leaders and the convenience.
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2012, 05:55 PM   #65
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,405
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords View Post
Veggies & fruits: If I went to a Mainland grocery store for my papaya, mango, lychee, tangerine, mandarin oranges, macadamia nuts, bok choy, sprouts, Okinawan sweet potato... I'd go broke. Yet I'm a little embarrassed to be seen buying them in local stores when they're so easy to grow at home. Meanwhile cow's milk, potatoes, grapes, raspberries, blueberries, and even apples can be horribly expensive-- especially out of season-- because they're "Mainland" products that locals might not generate much demand for. But strawberries & tomatoes are popular here, and they're easily grown by local farms.

Kona is probably the most expensive part of the Big Island. (Try Hilo or Puna.)
Ah, now that you've mentioned it, we happened to be buying some fruits from roadside vendors when visiting Akaka Falls near Hilo. See photo of the big avocados we bought at 2 for $1. My wife wanted to get $2 or $3 worth, but I had to talk her out of it. The fruits were still a bit green when we bought, and we managed to get only one ripe enough to eat before our week-long stay was up. The fruits in the picture were about the size of a large orange.



Also bought some cherimoya fruits ($5 for 3 lbs), and small papayas (< 6" long) at $2 for 5 fruits. Forgot to take the photos of these. I did not see tomato for sale.

With the climate so moderate year-round, if I were a Hawaii resident I would be sure to grow a lot of veggies too.
__________________
"Old age is the most unexpected of all things that can happen to a man" -- Leon Trotsky
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2012, 12:41 PM   #66
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,526
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marita40 View Post
Just for yucks here what $19.04 bought at Aldi yesterday. It still amazes me that I can buy a huge bag of groceries for that price.
Head of cauliflower
Two cartons of fresh blueberries
One large bag of baby carrots
1 large tub Fage 0% Greek yogurt
8 large Red Delicious apples
One oversize container of old fashioned oats
One large tub of shredded Parmesan cheese
100 count ziploc-style sandwich bags
1 large European dark chocolate bar
1 huge bag of chex-mix style snack
Dozen eggs

I try to try something new each time and so far haven't been disappointed. This time it was the chex-mix snacks. The bag was about 4 x the size of the name-brand chex-mix for about 1/3 the price, the contents of the mix was exactly the same, and the taste was super fresh, crunchy, and all around better than the "real" chex mix.
I am always amazed when I can fill my trunk full of groceries that include many fresh fruits and vegetables for usually $40-60. Yesterday's haul included grapefruits, tangerines, oranges, pomegranates, avocados, and bananas, with all the citrus fruits and the bananas for under $.50 per pound, and the avocados and pomegranates not far behind (but sold piecemeal not by the pound. My only regret is that they don't carry limes, so I have to go somewhere else to get that relatively common ingredient in our cooking.

One of the best money savers at Aldi is the discount/clearance items. Seasonal stuff (like thanksgiving stuff right now) goes on the chopping block at probably 20-30% of the price of regular non-sale items at the grocery store. They also recently had a lot of their italian food line on clearance so items like dried tortellini, ravioli, gnocchi, etc were a buck or so per pound, and sauces were a quarter or a third the price of what they normally sell at in grocery stores.

Sometimes they have great quality cuts of meat that we love discounted to well under $1/lb (with close expiration dates). Which raises the question - Is it possible to get tired of eating pork chops or ribs? Empirically, I would say no.

Oh, and for those who go to Aldi, you must try their Jalapeno Potato chips. The really thick kind of chip (a "Krunchers" brand knock off I think). It is a bit spicy but wow are they good, and they are under $2 for a big bag. If you are eating junk food, it better be delicious.
__________________
Retired in 2013 at age 33. Keeping busy reading, blogging, relaxing, gaming, and enjoying the outdoors with my wife and 3 kids (5, 11, and 12).
FUEGO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2013, 01:24 PM   #67
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 391
Noelm, is the Costco you are complaining about the one in East Harlem?

And re Aldi, does anyone know for sure whether their ground beef is free of pink slime?
__________________
palomalou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2013, 01:33 PM   #68
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by palomalou View Post
Noelm, is the Costco you are complaining about the one in East Harlem?

And re Aldi, does anyone know for sure whether their ground beef is free of pink slime?
I don't think you can ever be completely sure about so-called "pink slime" content unless you have your butcher grind sirloin, round or chuck (depending on what you're going to use it for) while you observe. Better still, grind it yourself at home after you've trimmed to your own specifications.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2013, 06:12 PM   #69
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 141
Quote:
Originally Posted by palomalou View Post
Noelm, is the Costco you are complaining about the one in East Harlem?
Its Yonkers. Every time I go there, its more and more frustration. New Rochelle is little better. But both are equally worse for grocery. I plan to give a try to Costco at Nanuet and see how it is.
__________________
noelm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2013, 07:14 PM   #70
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Brat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 5,914
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
I don't think you can ever be completely sure about so-called "pink slime" content unless you have your butcher grind sirloin, round or chuck (depending on what you're going to use it for) while you observe. Better still, grind it yourself at home after you've trimmed to your own specifications.
I asked a Costco butcher about that. He told me that they have their own processing plants and DO NOT use any 'pink-slime'.
__________________
Duck bjorn.
Brat is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-02-2013, 10:09 PM   #71
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
audreyh1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rio Grande Valley
Posts: 16,465
More Costco Effect!

King crab legs, at home, just awesome! I've been watching the prices, and this week they were $19.99 a pound. They are usually $25 a pound.

I recently noticed our favorite seafood restaurant had seriously raised the prices on their King crab, so I told DH we're just going to have to eat it at home and I would check out the Costco prices. Great timing!

We finally tried their littleneck clams last week. I'd been hesitating because the clams are so huge. Turns out they are Cedar Key (FL) clams which I'd never had before. Well they were excellent - very nice and tender even though they are large. Will definitely get them again.

Yep, we've been eating high on the hog!
__________________
Well, I thought I was retired. But it seems that now I'm working as a travel agent instead!
audreyh1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-02-2013, 10:12 PM   #72
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
audreyh1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rio Grande Valley
Posts: 16,465
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brat View Post
I asked a Costco butcher about that. He told me that they have their own processing plants and DO NOT use any 'pink-slime'.
I think Costco is one of the very few companies left that inspect the meat they buy. They also do their own butchering. I'm very picky about who I buy my meat from.
__________________
Well, I thought I was retired. But it seems that now I'm working as a travel agent instead!
audreyh1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2013, 09:40 AM   #73
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 45
We personally spend too much at Costco. The bill when we leave is never less than $150 and we don't buy a lot of groceries - simply cause we wouldn't be able to eat them before they rot. I do buy appliances from there and also some furniture when we need it. Recentl bought a recliner and a mattress for a total of ~$1000. Been happy with it and of course the rock solid Costco guarantee.
__________________
er33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 09:20 PM   #74
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,072
Quote:
Originally Posted by er33 View Post
We personally spend too much at Costco. The bill when we leave is never less than $150 and we don't buy a lot of groceries - simply cause we wouldn't be able to eat them before they rot. I do buy appliances from there and also some furniture when we need it. Recentl bought a recliner and a mattress for a total of ~$1000. Been happy with it and of course the rock solid Costco guarantee.
When we go there, it's always $100 or more. And they are mainly a cash business....so very profitable. What I've noticed about their fruits is that they last longer than the ones I buy in smaller containers for some reason. I love their chopped butternut squash and the brussel sprouts - I roast them in them in the oven with olive oil and salt and pepper and a little garlic powder - awesome. We've bought their prepared salmon and pizza....love it.

We don't eat out often in any case.....we went out the other night for the first time in a long time and frankly were disappointed in the quality of the meal. Place was packed, though. Same thing happened for me at another restaurant for a club meeting - wasn't very good. I can cook something much nicer and cheaper at home....
__________________
Deserat aka Bridget
“We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.” - George Orwell/Winston Churchill
deserat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 10:57 PM   #75
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
audreyh1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rio Grande Valley
Posts: 16,465
Quote:
Originally Posted by deserat View Post
When we go there, it's always $100 or more. And they are mainly a cash business....so very profitable. What I've noticed about their fruits is that they last longer than the ones I buy in smaller containers for some reason. I love their chopped butternut squash and the brussel sprouts - I roast them in them in the oven with olive oil and salt and pepper and a little garlic powder - awesome. We've bought their prepared salmon and pizza....love it.

We don't eat out often in any case.....we went out the other night for the first time in a long time and frankly were disappointed in the quality of the meal. Place was packed, though. Same thing happened for me at another restaurant for a club meeting - wasn't very good. I can cook something much nicer and cheaper at home....
I've noticed that Costco takes a lot of care with handling their fresh fruits and vegetables - and it shows. The produce is usually in top condition, and yes, it stays fresher longer. Which is good, because you're usually bringing home a large portion.
__________________
Well, I thought I was retired. But it seems that now I'm working as a travel agent instead!
audreyh1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 11:01 PM   #76
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Sacramento area
Posts: 444
Quote:
Originally Posted by deserat View Post
We don't eat out often in any case
Do food samples at Costco count as dining out? Works for me!
__________________
AWeinel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2013, 11:05 PM   #77
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
audreyh1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rio Grande Valley
Posts: 16,465
Quote:
Originally Posted by AWeinel View Post
Do food samples at Costco count as dining out? Works for me!
Last time I visited Costco on a Friday morning, the grocery section was jam packed with seniors noshing on samples - guess it was their lunch. The "Winter Texans" are at their peak.
__________________
Well, I thought I was retired. But it seems that now I'm working as a travel agent instead!
audreyh1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2013, 06:08 AM   #78
Full time employment: Posting here.
Badger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 825
Quote:
Originally Posted by deserat View Post
We don't eat out often in any case.....we went out the other night for the first time in a long time and frankly were disappointed in the quality of the meal. Place was packed, though. Same thing happened for me at another restaurant for a club meeting - wasn't very good. I can cook something much nicer and cheaper at home....
+1
Most places around here are chain restaurants so the only thing going for them in my opinion is consistancy. Of course that is only good if you like their food in the first place and don't mind paying for something that is only slightly better than fast food. So much is prepackaged, prepared in advanced, frozen, and highly salted. Food handling and cleanliness might also be a factor.

Cheers!
__________________
Badger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2013, 07:58 AM   #79
Recycles dryer sheets
l2ridehd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: PWC VA
Posts: 126
I am also a Foodie. Must have good food, selection and I cook a lot. There are three must have stores. Costco, Trader Joe's and Wegmans. I enjoy shopping at all three. Costco has great prices on just about everything. But quantities can be a challenge. Gas, cheese, meat, produce, cloths, electronics, coffee, cereal, fruit, wine, and their ice cream is the best anywhere. Trader Joes for some of there specialty items. Also wine fruit and things you want in small amounts.

Now Wegmans is another story completely. If I could only have one of the three it would be Wegman's. Yes you do pay a bit more, not excessive, but slightly more. But the quality is outstanding. Wine selection is great. And their web site is the absolute best. You can build your online shopping list, always find the lowest cost item, and then print the list with a store map that shows you exactly where everything is located. My shopping trips go so much faster when you know exactly where everything is located. The cheese shop and butcher shop are first class. The choice of every product is better then anywhere. The recipes they have are always good. And find a recipe you like and with one click add the ingredients to you shopping list along with store map and location. If you need gluten free they have a huge selection. Huge beer selection, great bakery, in store dining, correct size shopping carts, and so much more.
__________________
l2ridehd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2013, 12:55 PM   #80
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
travelover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 9,880
My local Costco is refilling ink cartridges now. Six bucks. Anxious to see how it works.
__________________

__________________
Yes, I have achieved work / life balance.
travelover is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:20 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.