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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Emma Gill

I repeated my Costco shop from six months ago and was staggered by some of the prices

With the cost of living crisis still hitting households hard, customers are changing the way they shop.

Whether it's swapping supermarkets, buying cheaper products, or cutting down altogether, most people are doing what they can in a bid to keep their bills down.

One method budget experts swear by when it comes to keeping costs down is to buy in bulk - and places like Costco have risen in popularity.

But the wholesaler is not immune to price rises affecting most businesses right now.

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The wholesaler is not immune to price rises affecting most businesses right now (Manchester Family/MEN)

I decided to repeat a shop I did at the Trafford Park site six months ago, to see exactly how much things have gone up. I was staggered by some of the hikes.

The largest increase was on Tetley tea bags, which have risen by a whopping 27.8%, from £8.99 for 720 in October, to £11.49 in my recent shop.

Other big hikes included Robinsons orange juice, up 23.5%, with two 1.75L bottles costing £3.58 last year, compared with the current £4.42.

And the Kirkland toilet rolls, which shoppers generally rave about, were up from £16.18 for a pack of 40, to £19.18, an increase of 18.5%.

Shoppers rave about Costco's Kirkland products (Manchester Family/MEN)

Two of the items had fallen victim to shrinkflation too, with packs of Diet Cokes and Kellogg's Coco Pops not only increasing in price but reducing in size.

Only two products had stayed the same price since October - the 4.5-litre bottle of Fairy non bio detergent and the five-litre bottle of Comfort fabric softener.

One item had actually decreased, with Finish dishwasher tablets down 20%, but only because it was one of the store's special offers, ending on May 7.

Had it not been for that, the overall increase in my shopping would have been much bigger than the 6.3% total, taking my bill from £103.96 to £110.54.

Had it not been for one of the products being on special offer, my shopping bill would have cost even more (Manchester Family/MEN)

Despite the rises, it still works out cheaper than most supermarkets. Just one bottle of the Robinsons orange juice, for instance, will generally set you back around £2.50. And a pack of 240 Tetley tea bags is around £4.60, whereas 240 from Costco works out at £3.83.

Of course you have to factor in a membership fee for Costco at £33.60 a year, but that's less than £3 a month so it wouldn't take too long to claw it back and it's accessible to a lot more people than it used to be.

A list of professions from which current or retired employees can apply is listed here and members can add on a spouse for free, or get an extra card for £14 plus vat.

Do you buy in bulk to keep costs down? Have you noticed prices rising at Costco or other wholesalers? Let us know in the comments.

As well as being more expensive, the packs of Coco Pops were also smaller (Manchester Family/MEN)

Full shopping list with prices Oct 2022 / April 2023 (% increase)

  • Fairy non bio 4.5L £15.59 / £15.59 (0%)
  • Comfort fabric softener 5L £5.74 / £5.74 (0%)
  • Dishwasher tablets Finish/Fairy (2x100) £17.98 / £14.38 (offer ends May 7) (-20%)
  • Toilet rolls £16.18 for 40 / £19.18 (18.5%)
  • Tetley tea bags £8.99 for 720 / £11.49 (27.8%)
  • Douwe Egberts coffee 400g £10.89 / £11.99 (10%)
  • Robinsons orange juice 2 x 1.75L £3.58 / £4.42 (23.5%)
  • Diet Coke 24 cans £11.63 / 30 cans £12.47 (7.2%)
  • Kellogg's Coco Pops 2 x 720g £5.19 / 2 x 650g £5.39 (3.9%)
  • Tuna 12x145g £8.19 / £9.89 (20.8%)

Total £103.96 / £110.54 (6.3%)

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