17 Health Products and Services That Cost Less at Costco


View as:

Costco store
Photo credit: Jonathan Weiss/shutterstock


Shoppers who joined Costco with cheap TVs and bulk toilet paper in mind may not have considered all the health-related goods and services available at the warehouse club. Cheapism.com compared prices on a handful of items at Costco, Walmart, a regional supermarket chain in Columbus, Ohio, and online sources. The warehouse club undercuts the competition, sometimes by significant amounts, on products from organic food to medication to insurance. Here's where consumers can find savings to keep the whole family healthy -- even the pets.

Related: 11 Types of People Who Shouldn't Set Foot in Costco

ripe red strawberries on wooden table
Photo credit: alisalipa/shutterstock


The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that organic produce is the top seller in the organic food space. Costco meets the demand with an array of fresh fruit, such as organic strawberries, at budget prices. Two pounds of the sweet, tangy orbs go for $6.99 at Costco compared with $9.98 for two 1-pound boxes at the supermarket.

Related: 10 Things Not to Buy at Costco, Sam's, or BJ's

almond butter in glass jar
Photo credit: sumikophoto/shutterstock


Demand for organic food products may be outstripping supply, but Costco is well-stocked with large quantities of organic vegetables and undercuts other retailers on price. Spinach, for example, sells for $4.49 a pound at the membership club and $5.99 at a local market.

Food Should Taste Good multigrain chips
Photo credit: Keith Homan/shutterstock


Healthy snacks for easy after-school nibbling include products such as organic Wholly Guacamole and Food Should Taste Good multigrain chips. Costco sells the dip in a 20-pack of 2-ounce cups for $10.99 (27 cents an ounce) compared with a four-pack of 2-ounce cups for $3.48 (43 cents an ounce) at Walmart. The chips come in a 24-ounce bag for $6.99 (29 cents an ounce) at Costco and a 5.5-ounce bag for $3.49 (63 cents an ounce) at the local supermarket.

fresh popcorn in bowl on white wooden table
Photo credit: Antonova Anna/shutterstock


Skinny Pop Popcorn, another family favorite, contains 150 calories, 3 grams of fiber, and 75 milligrams of sodium in each serving. Costco charges $4.99 for a 14-ounce bag, the equivalent of 35 cents an ounce, while Walmart's $2.83 price on a 4.4-ounce bag comes out to 64 cents an ounce.

loaf of bread
Photo credit: Konstantin Gushcha/shutterstock


Gluten-free food is all the rage these days, and Costco is a price leader on Udi's, a well-known brand. The price for a 30-ounce loaf at the warehouse club is $7.59 (25 cents an ounce). The same brand in a 24-ounce size sells for $7.94 (33 cents an ounce) at Walmart.

turkey meat slices
Photo credit: andersphoto/shutterstock


Prepare a healthy brown-bag lunch for any member of the family by pairing gluten-free bread with lean, oven-roasted turkey breast. The sliced lunch meat is available at Costco for $6.89 a pound compared with $3.99 for a half pound at the grocery store.

Related: How to Live Off Less Than $500 a Month at Costco

spinach in a bowl on wooden table
Photo credit: Lecic/shutterstock


Almond butter is an excellent source of fiber, protein, and unsaturated fatty acids, and a particularly good snack for people with diabetes. Costco, again, takes the lead on low price. A 27-ounce jar of almond butter costs $9.99, or 37 cents an ounce, at the warehouse club. At Walmart, the per-ounce cost is 58 cents for a 12-ounce jar costing $6.98.

apple slices
Photo credit: Africa Studio/shutterstock


Add a touch of almond butter to pre-sliced organic apples for a healthy grab-and-go snack that will appeal to young and old alike. The apple slices are tagged at $7.99 for eight 4-ounce bags at Costco. Nothing similar was available at either Walmart or the local supermarket.

pills in a pile
Photo credit: Elena Elisseeva/shutterstock


In a Consumer Reports study conducted in 2013, secret shoppers called 200 pharmacies, including Costco, inquiring about the cost of commonly prescribed medications without insurance. Costco was the cheapest by far. For example, Costco priced the anti-depressant Lexapro at $7 compared with $126 at CVS.

medicine bottle and pills laying on prescription
Photo credit: photastic/shutterstock


More than a quarter of American adults 40 and older take the cholesterol-lowering medications known as statins, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Lipitor, a commonly prescribed statin, cost $17 at Costco and $150 at CVS, the Consumer Reports study found.

Photo credit: leungchopan/shutterstock


Count the number of over-the-counter medications in the medicine cabinet. Then check out the savings to be had at Costco. A 220-tablet bottle of women's One A Day 50+ multivitamins costs $19.99 compared with nearly $24 for a 200-count bottle ordered from Amazon.

ibuprofen pills
Photo credit: Rick's Photography/shutterstock


Ibuprofen, a common pain reliever and fever reducer, is cheaper at Costco than elsewhere. The cost for Costco's Kirkland Signature brand ibuprofen is $10.49 for 1,000 200 mg capsules. The price for the same quantity and strength of Walmart's house brand Equate is $12.97.

woman receiving a dental treatment
Photo credit: Minerva Studio/shutterstock


Costco offers members living in California, Pennsylvania, and Texas individual and family dental insurance with premiums starting as low as $83.31 a year through a third-party provider. Coverage includes orthodontics, preventive, basic, and major services. Compare this against an average yearly cost of more than $200 for an individual plan, according to the National Association of Dental Plans.

woman getting eye glasses at eye doctor
Photo credit: Andresr/shutterstock


Costco Optical (not available at all locations) can save members money on contacts, glasses, and prescription sunglasses with a current prescription. Many stores also host independent optometrists who conduct exams. Costco charges $130 for high-definition progressive lenses with anti-reflective coating and UV protection, according to Consumer Reports -- about half off the $255 price at Walmart. That said, Costco faces some stiff competition in this category, particularly for consumers with simpler prescriptions. It's possible to buy a pair of single-lens specs from an eyeglasses website for less than $50.

woman being vaccinated
Photo credit: Production Perig/shutterstock


Costco typically provides flu shots to members and non-members alike for $14.99, no insurance required. Last year Sam's Club charged the same price, but consumers had to pay $10 more at Target or Walmart and more than twice as much at Rite Aid, CVS, or Walgreens.

female doctor holding application form while consulting patient
Photo credit: Pressmaster/shutterstock


Costco offers a host of free health screenings for conditions such as diabetes and osteoporosis through health clinics at some locations on select days -- quite a bargain considering that the going rate for a bone density test is $125. The schedule can be downloaded from the pharmacy website.

vet presenting medication for cat
Photo credit: Olena Yakobchuk/shutterstock


Costco even throws a bone to the family pet: The warehouse club fills more than 150 commonly prescribed medications for dogs and cats. For example, Temaril-P, prescribed for itching and coughing in dogs, could be a daily medication the animal takes for life. The cost is 77 cents a tablet at Costco and 95 cents at 1-800-PetMeds.

Cheapism.com participates in affiliate marketing programs, which means we may earn a commission if you choose to purchase a product through a link on our site. This helps support our work and does not influence editorial content.