Have you ever asked yourself or your friend what Costco’s return policy without receipt is? Well, you are at the perfect place to find the answer to such a question.
Costco is one of the largest warehouse membership retail businesses in the world. It also happens to have one of the best return policies in the business.
It’s hard to point to another retailer that can top Costco’s return policies.
So, what is Costco’s return policy without a receipt? You don’t need a receipt to return items to Costco. All you need to know is what you can return and what you can’t, along with some of the other return policies are and the advantages that you can take with a Costco membership, which you have to have to shop there.
Of course, you can shop at Costco using someone else’s membership but it’s far more difficult to take advantage of their return policy if you are piggybacking off of someone else.
Costco’s return policy is extremely popular amongst its members and it is known as “The Risk-Free 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.”
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Returning Items to Costco Without a Receipt
Returning items to Costco is very stress-free because you don’t have to have a receipt with you at all and you don’t even need to bring in a proof of purchase.
As members of Costco, all of your transactions with Costco are recorded and the data is stored with them through the use of your membership card.
All you really should do is bring your membership card with you, along with the method you used to pay and you will get your money back or a range of other options.
Costco also doesn’t put a time limit on much of its stock, so you can return it whenever.
There are a few items that Costco won’t accept returns on and it’s a sensible list, especially considering what you can bring back and how open-ended the return window is for most of Costco’s products.
- Perishables cannot be returned, especially food
- Costco can’t accept returns on items that are missing parts or accessories
- You have to be a member to return items to Costco
- You cannot return anything from an old membership, even if you use another person who is a current member
Your membership card is how all of this works and it’s the membership card that gets you into the building in the first place.
Everything that you purchase in Costco is going to go through your membership and that’s why everything is so simplified.
How you get your return is contingent on how you paid for the item in the first place. If you return an item with no proof of purchase and no receipt, a Costco employee will simply look up all of the transactions that you have made through your membership card and will apply your return accordingly.
If you paid in cash, you will get cashback. If you paid with a debit or credit card, your credit or debit card accounts will be credited back the amount of the purchase.
Costco Timelines for Returning Items
As good as Costco’s return policy is, some items are a little more strictly limited for a variety of reasons.
Most products that you purchase at Costco are very nearly (or may as well be) products with a lifetime guarantee, with the following exceptions:
- MP3 Players
- Projectors and TVs
- Tablets and smartphones
As you can see, all of these items generally fall under the electronics category and if you want to complete a return on these items, you need to bring the item in question back within 90 days of the day that you purchased it.
The good news is, 90-days is pretty standard across the board, in terms of electronics, because electronics are so often obsolete fairly quickly.
Costco wants them back in a hurry so reselling them is still pretty viable and, more importantly, lucrative.
There are also some items that you can return in-store but cannot return online.
- Apple Products
- Digital media
- Event tickets
- Prescription glasses
- All other optical items
If you want to return any of these items, you will have to make your way to a Costco retailer and return the item in-store.
In addition to not being able to return some products online, there are a few other items that you cannot return to Costco at all. Sales of the following products are final:
- Gift Cards
- Personalized items
- Car Tires
- Car Batteries
All of the items on this last list make a lot of sense. There is a fast level of depreciation when it comes to car tires and batteries, especially the car tires, that are losing tread the moment they hit the highway.
Batteries themselves only have so many charges before they lose their overall capacity.
Alcohol and tobacco cannot be purchased, sold back, and resold by law, so that’s a pretty obvious reason for tagging them with a non-returnable label.
Personalized items cannot be returned because it is something that is personalized to you and Costco cannot resell something like that.
Last but not least, gift cards are never returnable, regardless of the retailer that you are dealing with. That’s nothing new for Costco or any other retailer, for that matter.
Non-Members Returning Gifts
Costco will not accept returns from those who are not members of Costco, however, Costco will accept returns from non-members who received a gift that was purchased from a Costco member.
You won’t be able to do it on your own but will have to at least have the member ID of the person that originally purchased the gift for you.
Costco will process it just as it would any other returned item that is processed for a Costco member.
Once the item is returned, the non-member will get store credit for the amount of the return and will essentially be the only non-Costco member able to shop without a membership card.
All Things Considered
There is not much to complain about with Costco’s return policy, especially since you don’t need a receipt and the vast majority of products have a lifetime guarantee.
With a few exceptions on typical, non-returnable items, Costco simply has one of the best return policies available.
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