Costco Workers Reveal Shoppers' 8 Craziest Returns

People with shopping carts filled with groceries goods, products walking out of Costco store in Virginia in parking car lot


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People with shopping carts filled with groceries goods, products walking out of Costco store in Virginia in parking car lot

Ridiculous Returns

Part of Costco's appeal — besides its inflation-proof hot dogs and rotisserie chicken — is its unrivaled return policy. From electronics to used bed sheets, members can return almost anything at any time. That said, some returns are so clearly outrageous that employees have to say no. Costco workers have shared stories of the most ridiculous returns on Reddit, including used underwear, rotten salmon, and other shocking products. Read on for some of the craziest returns in retail. (Not already a Costco member? You can apply here.)

Related: Costco Employees Dish on the Most Outrageous Revoked Membership Stories

Raw salmon portions

1. Rotten Salmon

You shouldn't leave raw fish in your car for more than a few minutes, let alone months. But that's exactly what one oddball shopper did. He stored a hunk of salmon in his trunk and tried to return it a few fortnights later. "It was green and black and smelled like absolute death," the Costco employee writes, adding that they denied the return despite his name-calling.

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Green underpants

2. Used Underwear

When a woman tried to return a set of used 7-year-old underwear, the Costco employee rejected her return (while wearing gloves), though it wasn't because the undergarments had been worn. The woman, the worker writes, was missing a pair from the set.

Related: Costco Products You Can't Return

variety of wine in crates at retail shop
Praiwan Wasanruk/istockphoto

3. An Empty Case of Wine

After finishing an entire case of wine, a Costco member had the audacity to return the vino because it "gave her a headache," a Redditor writes. While it's illegal to return alcohol in many states, this woman received an $85 cash refund.

big tree house in autumn
Cristian Martin/istockphoto

4. A Tree House

In another egregious case of customer entitlement, a woman tried to return a tree house 15 years after purchasing it. Her excuse? Her children had grown up and were too big for it.

Rusty Lawnmower

5. An Old, Rusty Lawnmower

More than 10 years after purchasing it, a Costco member tried to return a dirty, rusty, grass and oil-covered lawnmower, a superfan shares. While this customer was clearly abusing the store's policies, he received his money back because the lawnmower had, in fact, stopped working.

Mouldy oranges in a bag

6. A Bag of Oranges

A bag of oranges isn't as outrageous as a months-old rotten salmon or years-old used underwear. Still, returning a bag of oranges every month because just a few go bad is clearly taking advantage of Costco's return policy, and that's precisely what one Costco member did, a Redditor writes. But this time, the retailer took notice. "After about six months her account was flagged and she was given a choice to return her membership or accept the fact that oranges go bad if you don’t eat them fast enough," they explained.

Summer Holiday Vacation Beach Bag and Fun Supply and Toy

7. Used Beach Gear

In Hawaii, tourists buy and return "piles" of beach gear after their vacation is over, a Redditor shares. Don't be a tourist from hell; bring your own beach gear, take it home, or at least donate it.

Old ripped leather sofa

8. An Old, Discolored Couch

One way to beat inflation: Buy a couch from Costco, wait a few years, and then return it! (We're kidding, of course). That's exactly what one Costco shopper did, returning a $2,000 old, "discolored" couch purchased in 2013.