Monday, January 23, 2012

Sam's Club--Worth the Hassle?

     Now I have a great (heavy sarcasm on the great) Sam's Club experience to go along with the Walmart cookie experience I already posted about. Now I have a set! Yay! And this is about a week after signing up for a Sam's club membership for the very first time. :-/
     My husband and I had been mulling it around about whether it would be worth it to purchase a Sam's Club membership. We do not have a COSTCO here, though I've heard it is better than Sam's. Paying for "savings" seemed a little counter-productive to me. And the savings weighed against the price of the membership are negligible, in my opinion. But we thought we'd go ahead and try it out for a year. 
     So, we went to Sam's to pick up a couple things on my list that I thought were decent deals. The best deal we found? A 3-pack of Welch's Sparkling grape juice (which I love!) priced at $2.91. That was a great deal, so we picked up 2.
     When I got to the checkout, these 3-packs rang up at 1 cent. Long story short, I was not allowed to purchase the grape juice, even though the sign was still up and there were still other bottles left on the shelf. The supervisor radio-ed someone to tell them to take the remaining bottles off the shelf. She then claimed that she could not override the system to give me a price adjustment, and therefore could not sell me the grape juice. 
      Even after speaking to a higher up manager (who I assume was the manager on duty) I was continually told the same thing--they could not do it. Now, I have been in situations at other stores where something rang up wrong and I was either given the item for free or at least allowed to buy it at the ADVERTISED price. I've never been told I cannot have the item at all. After all, the mistake is on the part of the store, not the customer, right? Why should the customer suffer the consequences?
     I must say this is NOT a very good first impression of my Sam's membership. It really just reaffirms what I've always suspected and continue to hear from people who refuse to shop at Sam's club or Walmart--customer service is simply not a priority at either Sam's Club or Walmart. I suppose they're so far in front of their competitors they don't have to worry about it--but how long will it be 'till people get so fed up they go elsewhere for good?
     To be fair, the manager on duty did end up giving us a $15 gift card to use, and did apologize for the inconvenience, but I am still extremely irritated at not being allowed to buy something at the advertised price. Sorry, but at this point, the few pennies a year I MAY save with a Sam's membership are just not worth it to me. This may be the first and last Sam's Club membership I purchase.


  1. Hi, I found you on SheBlogs and am your newest follower (facebook and twitter too). I'm looking forward to following you :)

    -Audri from Rediscovering Our Family

  2. I've given you the Versatile Blogger Award! Thanks for all the great posts. I love your blog.

    Lisa @ Frugal Mommie of 2

  3. I don't have much experience with Sams Club. I have used Costco and I currently use BJs. I think BJs may only be in the northeast.

    I like Costco's products the best. Their produce is awesome. My SIL buys most of her produce there. She serves it at parties and it looks almost as good as the Harry & David stuff. The downsides to Costco are the only credit card they take is American Express, but since I switched to cash that isn't as big of an issue for me, and they only accept their own coupons. The only reason I switched to BJs is because BJs is closer to my home.

    For the most part I'm happy with BJs. Their milk, butter and egg prices are consistently the lowest in my area, with the exception of a once in a blue moon sale at my local supermarkets. The bananas are the lowest price for the quality. The cheaper bananas I have found were spotty the say I brought them home.

    BJs also takes manufacturer's coupons. Supposedly they will allow you to stack their coupons with manufacturer's coupons, but I'm not sure they allow this anymore. I read the terms on a few BJs coupons that say "not to be combined with any other offer or coupon." I'm sort of afraid to try stacking now. Nevertheless, the BJs coupons pay for my $50 membership fee after about 3 visits or 6 weeks.

    The warehouse stores are like any other store in that you can really save but you can also really overspend.

    Normally I agree with not paying for savings. One of my local grocery stores gives out silver coins that can be redeemed for savings. Recently, they have implemented this "super saver" club, where for $25 a year, you get a silver card that allows you to get the silver coin savings without using the coins. I say screw that. I'll just keep using my coins. Of course the store seems to give out fewer coins now.