How To Get Free Shipping On Costco: 7 Methods That Work + Tips For Reducing Shipping Fee

Costco is a marketplace where you can get products at competitive prices from different sellers and manufacturers. While only a few items feature a shipping fee on this platform, I will show you how to get free shipping for your Costco orders. 

The easiest way to get free shipping on Costco is to target items that offer it. However, this method may not be effective when an item does not feature free shipping. Besides, there are better methods that can get you what you want. 

Read this guide until the end to discover 7 effective ways to enjoy free shipping on Costco and alternative ways to reduce shipping fees. 

How to Get Free Shipping on Costco 


1. Combine Costco and Instacart memberships for grocery shopping

One of the easiest ways to get free grocery shipping and delivery from Costco is to order via Instacart. However, you need to be an Instacart Express member. This way, you get to enjoy free (same-day) delivery for grocery orders worth at least $35 without a Costco membership. 

Please note that only metropolitan areas are currently eligible for same-day delivery. In addition, customers who do not have a Costco membership can only enjoy this benefit once. 

They must subscribe to keep benefiting from the scheme. 

2. Use Costco membership only for grocery shopping

Another way to enjoy free shipping on Costco groceries is to become a Costco member. With a membership, you get to enjoy free (two-day) shipping on orders worth $75 or more. This only applies to non-perishable items. 

Orders below this minimum attract a $3 shipping or delivery fee, which is still a bargain. On the other hand, cold and frozen groceries have a $10 delivery fee per order. Your order must be worth at least $100 to enjoy free shipping (as a Costco member) in this category. 

3. Shop online 

You can shop online at Costco without a membership and enjoy free shipping if your order costs $75 or more. However, there are a few drawbacks to shopping without a membership. Example include: 

  • You cannot enjoy the expedited (two-day) delivery. You can only ship via standard (3-5 days) delivery. 
  • A 5% surcharge applies for every order 
  • Fresh groceries are not listed 

4. Buy items with free shipping

You can target items with no shipping fee. While most of these products already have their shipping fee included in their cost, it usually matters less because Costco is a very competitive marketplace. 

Unlike other methods, this approach is labor-intensive and usually worth it when you are buying in bulk. 

5. Target Costco promotions 

Costco occasionally offers free shipping promotions on its website. While these offerings last for a limited time and feature terms and conditions, you can take advantage of them if you are a regular shopper. 

During this promotion, eligible or lucky customers enjoy free shipping on Costco orders of any amount. You can sign up for their email newsletter to stay up-to-date with their promotions. 

6. Target items with an in-store pickup option

Some Costci items may be eligible for free in-store pickup. You can find this information in the product’s details. Targeting such items and picking them up on your way home is another way to avoid shipping fees altogether. 

7. Free shipping coupon 

You can get free shipping coupons on Costco or third-party websites like or RetailMeNot. Applying these codes to your order covers shipping costs or a large chunk of it. 

Please note that these coupon codes may have restrictions, like minimum purchase requirements, or cannot be applied to some items. This is why it is essential to read the terms and conditions for every coupon before creating a shopping list. 

How to Reduce Costco Shipping Fee 


For customers who do not have any membership or require Costco items urgently, enjoying free shipping may be difficult. If that is the case, here are 5 ways you can reduce your shipping cost on Costco: 

1. Choose local delivery

Costco has several shipping and delivery channels. Examples include UPS, FedEx, and Instacart  (the local option). The shipping and delivery fees for these companies vary. 

Hence, if you reside near the Costco warehouse, it may be wise to stick with local delivery. This delivery mode can help you save some money on shipping while doing the same thing international couriers would do. 

However, not every location can enjoy this feature. Go to the Costco website and enter your zip code to check for eligibility. 

2. Shop with a Costco Cash Card 

Shopping with a Costco Cash Card is another way to save on shipping fees. This is a prepaid card that allows you to shop online or in-store without worrying about shipping fees, provided there are sufficient funds. 

You can get this card at a Costco warehouse or online; it never expires. 

3. Get the Costco Anywhere Visa Card

Owning the Costco Anywhere Visa Card does not directly cut the cost of shipping. It incurs chargeback on eligible purchases. This card may qualify you for benefits like extended warranties and worldwide car rental insurance. 

These benefits offset shipping costs in the long run and are ideal for Costco members (exclusively) who regularly shop at Costco or anywhere that accepts Visa cards. 

4. Buy in bulk 

Buying in bulk or packs helps you pay for shipping just once instead of paying per unit within a pack. This culture can also help you save money on the cost of an item and is ideal for customers looking to resell. 

5. Instacart refers to a friend scheme 

Since Instacart is one of the delivery services, leveraging their ‘refer a friend’ promotion can help you cut costs on your next order. This way, you can shop and ship for less altogether by applying the discount awarded from your successful referral to the order. 


Does Costco offer membership for free?

Costco does not offer a free or discounted membership. However, it provides exclusive offers to students to join as new members and get a Costco Shop Card. 

How long can you return something to Costco?

Costco has a standard 90-day return window from the date you receive the order. 

Does Costco refund the shipping fee?

Costco refunds both handling and shipping fees when issuing a refund. 

In a Nutshell 

There are several ways you can enjoy free shipping on Costco as a premium or regular consumer. Customers with a Costco or Instacart membership can leverage these methods with special perks like spending less and expedited delivery. 

If you do not have a membership, you can target items with free shipping, meet the minimum $75 cost for online orders, or register for the Costco newsletter to get updates on promotions.

I hope you found this guide helpful. Please see what happens if an Instacart customer reports a missing order

Thanks for reading.