Jan 15 2009

What are good deals at Sam’s Club?

There’s a pretty good promotion going on at Sam’s Club for new members: Pay the $40/year membership fee to join, and they’ll give you a $25 store gift card. (Heard about this from Common Sense with Money). This offer is good today through the 21st.

I live less than 10 minutes from a Sam’s Club, so I do think I’d be able to use my membership on a regular basis, if I wanted.

I want to hear from you first, though.

What are the best deals at Sam’s?

The one time I went with my mother-in-law, I wasn’t hugely impressed with the prices on some things. I knew that I could get things cheaper at the drugstores or at Aldi. But surely there are some deals to be had there, yes?

I don’t have a need for gallon-sized cans of corn, but I know they have ‘value packs’ of say, 8 cans of regular-sized corn bundled together. So hopefully, things I buy there won’t go to waste.

Also, I like the idea of the “click n’ pull” service. I can fill my shopping cart online, and my order will be ready by the time I get to the store. This will be really handy with an infant in tow!

I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts.



29 Responses to “What are good deals at Sam’s Club?”

  1. Congrats on the new little one!

    We got a Sam’s membership over the summer when gas prices were so high. They are usually 10 cents below anywhere else.

    They have the lowest price of meat that I have been able to find in our area. Unless I see it on sale somewhere cheeper we buy our meat in bulk from them.

    There presh produce per pound is a great deal..although we don’t usually go through it quick enough before it goes bad. If we were a larger family it would make more sense.

    We get our glasses there, gas and meat..thats about it. Your right you can get better deals on the other items elsewhere. My membership only cost me $30 and with the gas prices alone it as been worth it.

  2. I don’t have an Aldi’s convenient to me–but we freqeuently go to Sams Club. Some of my favorites I consider to be good deals (from my recent reciept):

    Whole Chickens .78/lb
    Members Mark Dryer Sheets 7.28 (for 400)
    Organic Spring Mix Salad 4.98 (1lb–lasts over a week)
    Celery 2.47 (32oz)
    Hard Salami (3.62/lb.
    Pig Ears 9.48 (for the dog).

    Also on the list–fish, apples, butter, milk, eggs(If I know I’m going to be needing a lot)all free and clear laundry detergent.

    We also frequently buy some frozen convenience foods there–pizza, pierogies, breaded shrimp–which I probably wouldn’t buy at a regular grocery store because of the price–but they keep us from going out to eat alot.

    The prices should be close as I’m in Pittsburgh too.

    And–congrats on Jonathan!

  3. I buy our hamburger there and just a few other food items. BUT, I love their prices on pictures, you can’t beat 5×7’s for about 40 cents and 8×10’s for about 1.40! I love to print bigger and display and change them often. My membership is paid for through my job.

  4. Diapers, maybe? I know you have a stash but when you run out, their store brand diapers and wipes are priced reasonably.

  5. I find the sams by me almost always has gas about 5 cents a gallon cheaper than anywhere else. the other nice thing is that there is never any lines. We also found formula to be cheaper there.

  6. I’m in Pittsburgh too and I’ve had both Sam’s and Costco in Robinson. The best deals at Sam’s (other than the produce) were the meat markdowns. If you get there when they open, they mark their meat down nicely and it’s almost always very good quality.

  7. My sams (in Illinois) told me just a week ago that I won’t find meat marked down as easily. He told me they have been given a new longer limit on how long they can keep meat. I used to alway’s go straight for the meat counter first thing in the morning. I still like their meat prices though, even without a red sticker, lol.

  8. FORMULA!!! I know you;re not there yet, but if you ever need to use it, the Sam’s Club brand is twice as big for half the price. All formulas must be equal acording to FDA standards, so other people are just wasting money on brand names. Thier formula is THE BEST!!!

  9. I always buy our meat at Sam’s unless Kroger is having a big sale. I’ve found that the lean hamburger is a consistently good deal. I also look for markdowns–though now I’ll start going earlier in the day. We just bought steaks and chuck roasts last weekend. I love their pork chops and can get two servings out of each one. I also buy chicken thighs there.

    We also buy all free and clear detergent, electrasol tablets, lemonade mix, hot chocolate mix, diet coke, and produce I know we’ll use that week. We also just switched from Iams dog food to the Sam’s lamb and rice and our dog seems happy.

    Except for meet and easily usable produce, we stick to non-perishable items. I’ve found that the produce isn’t that great of a deal compared to Aldi though.

    Mrs. H-B’s last blog post..Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Blogger

  10. aside from meat, yeast is amazingly cheap there. I got 2lbs for about $7. way better than paying $6 for the little 4oz jars.

  11. I buy only rice there, which is about 5 dollars cheaper than the Indian grocery stores. Other than that, I didn’t find anything to buy there. Some stuff you can find at other places and get as cheap or even cheaper using coupons. Some other stuff you’d have to buy in much larger quantities than you’d even need. I bought a 4 lb box of salt we are not even halfway through it after 8 months. So, at the end of the day, you might just be better off saving your membership fee, and using coupons to buy stuff from other places.

    RH’s last blog post..17. How to get Power/ Electricity in Champaign – Urbana

  12. We have a Costco membership because it’s a lot closer, but I’ll tell you what we buy there. :)

    We get big tubs of organic spinach for smoothies, lots of fresh fruit because they usually have a great selection, frozen organic veggies, DOG FOOD (that was our main motivator in getting the Costco membership) and pretty much whatever else we think is a good deal. I got oatmeal, vinegar, and baking soda there last. It’s huge quantities, but I figured it was a good deal and I can use it. :)

    I don’t think I’m any help! haha

    MrsMoney’s last blog post..“No-Poo” Shampoo Alternative: Don’t use Shampoo Again!

  13. Sam’s and Walmart are the closest stores to my house. I do not like to shop at Walmart, I shop at Sam’s every other week or so. My girlfriend and I have fun, I get help shopping, and best of all SUPER CHEAP DATE!! I know what you are thinking but hear me out.

    After we get there we usually split a Hot Dog and drink. this is $1.62 including tax. After we eat I refill our HUGE cup with my personal concoction “DR BEER” (half root beer half Dr Pepper) it is tasty try it some time. Then as we shop there is always a few samples to munch on. In my opinion the shopping experience is the best deal in Sam’s.

    BUT WAIT THERE IS MORE!!!

    THE ROASTED CHICKEN seriously 5 bucks for a chicken that will last me 3-4 days and then Heather (thats the girlfriend) can make a soup with it if I am lucky.

    Also good deals on tires, and if you ever need paper plates buy them once and you will never need them again.

    I think my membership has paid for itself several times over just in hot dogs.

  14. I’ve been a Sam’s believer for years. Even if you just get gas there, you’ve covered your membership cost for the year in gas savings. Especially since it’s not out of your way to get there. I always like getting the Tyson Boneless Skinless frozen chicken breasts there. It’s around $15 for a 6.5 lb bag and they’re big! I’ve compared and it’s way cheaper than anywhere else and the quality is way better. They also have organic artisan bread in the freezer section that is only $5 for 4 loaves and it’s really good. Frozen veggies are a great deal; but if you can get them for next to free at the grocery store, you may not need them. Bread is usually a good deal if your grocer isn’t running any deals one week. Bananas and other fruit items usually have prices that are hard to beat. I would say that if you’re disciplined to not get caught up in buying everything they’ve got, you’ll be fine to just get the things you know are better deals there than anywhere else.

  15. I don’t have to buy diapers anymore, but when I did, I found the best price there.
    Now I buy a few things regularly. If I can get them cheaper elsewhere, I do, but often I can’t get them for a better price.

    I buy milk – it was $2.89 yesterday, which is comparable to my Aldi’s price (but Aldi is a much further drive for me.)

    Pepperoni – (we eat lots of homemade pizza) $11.77 for 5 pounds. I was paying over $2 for less than an ounce before! I just divide it up into freezer bags and toss it in the freezer, then pull out a bag for pizza or whatever else I’m using it for.

    Cheese – we go through a lot of cheddar cheese. I buy 5 lbs. for about $11.68. (It freezes well too.) Even when Kroger has their mega sale on cheese, it usually doesn’t beat this price.

    I also buy peanut butter there – but that’s one thing we are name brand loyal to. 2 jars of Jif (80 oz. total) is $7.88. Even with coupons I usually can’t beat that price.

    I also buy the whole chickens like someone else mentioned. And bread – I keep storebought bread in my freezer for when I don’t have time to make it myself. I don’t have the exact price on bread, but it’s typically less than I can get it even at my Aldi. Chips are cheaper there too – for the ones we are picky about. The rest we get at Aldi.

    I also buy butter there – it’s usually the best price, though sometimes Aldi beats it.

    I know there are a few other things, but this comment is getting really long, so I’ll stop there!

    Jennifer’s last blog post..Boring…

  16. I second the votes for the diapers and formula! we also get gas there. We used to get photos pinted, but our store screwewd them up 1 too many times, so we don’t do that any more.

    other things: They have random clothing and kids stuff that can be really good deals, esp. at the end of the season. I also know people who have been pleased with furniture purchases there too! It’s also a great source for party food–big bags of chips, packs of guac, etc..

    Michelle’s last blog post..A Cold Winter’s Night

  17. This is the one store I have a price list on, to refer to when looking at ads. We buy.
    Cheese Shredded – I have never found cheaper.
    Corn
    Mixed Vegetables
    Wipes Huggies generic are cheaper though
    Hand Sanitizer refill
    Canned fruit
    Cleaning supplies
    Air freshener refills
    Kraft Macaroni n Cheese- I have never found cheaper.
    OTC medicines
    Classico Spaghetti sauce
    Pasta
    Cat litter
    Chicken Nuggets – Tyson
    Tortilla Chips
    Bought a Sealy pillow top mattress
    Office supplies
    This is a partial list of some of the things we have bought. I do keep a list of the items we buy and prices, because I can get them cheaper on sale sometimes at other stores.
    You can go online and get the price of items in your local store.
    Good Luck

  18. the best deals? Every weekend the sheconomist and I go to sams and get free samples. It’s a free lunch for us.

    I got my computer from Costco, $150 cheaper than anywhere else.

    Milk is always cheap too.

  19. Do they still not accept Visa? If not, can I write a check?

  20. Okay, I live in the mid east coast by DC, not sure of this helps but just in case

    We normally get:

    Powdered Milk- 13.66 for a 4.4 lb box, makes 22 qts. At our local Food Lion it costs 3.25 to make 3 qts.
    Pasta-like Spaghetti for 5.64 for 6 lbs, it’s normally no cheaper then 1.00/lb where I live.
    Tomato sauce-2.72- 6 lb 90z can
    Diced tomatoes-2.48-6 lb 6oz can, I use these to make my own sauce (We have some sort pasta at least once/week.)
    Vanilla extract( I do A LOT of baking) 5.58 for 1 pt. Um big savings there.
    Eggs ( 2-18 packs) 4.88
    We get the cheese too for 11.38 a 5 lb bag.

    So yeah you get the right stuff and it’s a bag savings. Now things like cleaning products, sometimes yes it’s a savings, but if you coupon, which I do, then I can normally that stuff for CHEAP elsewhere. Even diapers I get cheaper elsewhere.

    Oh Yeah frozen veggies are a good deal too. We always get the frozen corn, it’s like 5 bucks for a bag of like 32 min ears? It’s a lot.

    Also Judy, last time I checked they changed and started to accept Visa now.

  21. Somebody mentioned furniture- when I first got married 7 1/2 years ago we purchased our dining room table and six chairs for around $500, a trunk I use as a coffee table and a king size Serta mattress and box springs. I no longer have a child in diapers, but the Enfamil powdered formula was a lot cheaper than other stores. Milk is cheaper and I also buy the big bags of Tyson boneless skinless chicken breasts. I also always buy the huge bags of Tyson chicken nuggets for my daughter and they last forever. DVD’s and CD’s are also cheaper. We only go about twice a year, but that still pays for our membership. I just have to stop myself from buying a bunch of junk I don’t need!!! Also, they do have children’s clothing that is cheaper, but it is hit or miss whether or not you will find what you need – if you see it you better buy it that day because it probably will not be there the next. I got my daughter an adorable ladybug raincoat when she was preschool age and she was able to wear it for 3 years!

  22. the meat. their meat selection is pretty good and cheap if you buy in bulk family packs. that’s the only thing i’ll miss about canceling our membership.

    tiffanie’s last blog post..in the works

  23. The spices (as well as the vanilla and yeast already mentioned) are a good deal if you can use the large quantities they are packaged in.

  24. I usually pick up…

    30 Nestle Pure Life Bottle Water $3.88
    6lb bag of Ore-Ida Hashbrowns $4.88
    28-32 count Butterfly Shrimp $8.28
    4 boxes Kool-Aid Jammers $4.28
    400 Members Mark Dryer Sheets $7.28

    I find it cheaper for me to purchase these items at Sam’s. I usually make a trip once a month to pick up these items (or the ones that we need). We even picked up a few Christmas gifts there this past year.

    Another idea, if you’re not sure that you will use it. Ask a friend or family member if they would like to come along with you and maybe splitting some of the bulk items will help. You could even ask them to go in on the membership with you.

    mom_of2boys’s last blog post..Free Redbox Code for 1/19/09

  25. Thanks for your help, everyone!

    I joined Sam’s Club today. I paid for $30 of the $40 membership with a gift card, and then I got a $25 gift card to spend in the store (part of that promotion going on). Pretty good deal!

    I just got a few things while there today. I think there are some good deals to be had there, but I can also see how it would be easy to get carried away.

  26. The roasted chickens are less than $5 and they are huge. The first day we have warm roasted chicken for dinner. I use the leftovers to make chicken enchiladas and chicken pot pie. For (2) peolpe this should be at least 5 meals from one chicken. I shop at Aldis too but their frozen chicken run about $3 and are half the size. So with Sams you pay a little more but its much bigger and after a shopping trip you have a warm ready made dinner instead of a frozen block of chicken. Also the fresh berries at our Sams club are much cheaper and much better quality then Pick n Save and Aldis.

  27. I find that most everything we buy is cheaper at Sam’s coffee beans are a great price. Everything that all the other people have said is true.

    These are the items I have noticed are NOT cheaper at Sam’s:
    ground turkey (twice as much as walmart per lb)
    mayo
    sea food (shrimp, scallops, etc.) may or may not be this really depends on the time of year.

    Sydnee’s last blog post..When did my skinny dog get FAT?

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Hey! I'm Kacie, wife to Shane and mother to Jonathan (7), Vivienne (5) and Amelia (2) . I write about my family's finance: how we save money, improve our spending, and plan for the future.

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