Parking... Costco Loves Its Customers' Cars and My Cars Love Them Back For Me!

Qualifier
I shop at several “chain” retail stores for groceries, household stuff, prescriptions, electronics, etcetera, mainly in two states, but places in between, too. One thing I dislike most about shopping is to try and find a parking place way out where it’s least likely that some idiot will pound door dings in my vehicle that I try and maintain in new condition. Often they find me and park next to me anyhow and do their thing. These heat-seeking idiots are on every regular parking lot.

My Hat Is Off To COSTCO
Nowhere that I shop (except online, ha, ha) offers parking spaces that protect my vehicles from nicks and dings better than the way Costco does.

The parking spaces are long and wide, I mean WIDE! Then there’s lines reserving EXTRA SPACE between the already WIDE spaces. Wide vehicles, Hummers, trucks, etcetera have plenty of room to be safe.

Also, they provide walkways to get from the parking lot to the building without mixing it up with crazy car drivers. They’ve got the safest lots I’ve seen.

I shop and buy gas at my local COSTCO on days other than week-end days and it’s never crowded. Although I never try, parking near the entrance is easy for those who choose to be lazy or have physical disabilities or limits.

So, I salute them for looking out for me and my car. I’m sure it’s quite costly acquiring considerably more real estate and adding more pavement and lines, but I sure appreciate it. I look forward to parking there after I buy my gas there.

Does anybody know of another retail chain of stores that has more considerate parking?
I’d like to hear about it.
CSA
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We joined Costco in 1986 when they first arrived in our area. Then you ha to be a professional or a business owner to qualify. Since that time e have averaged about $6-8000 per year in purchases.

Never a problem with returns or refunds.

How about those wide parking spaces and walkways? Eh?
CSA
:palm_tree: :sunglasses: :palm_tree:

Yes I also like the parking spaces. Our costco gas is busy during all open hours. So many left hand fill cars I usually end up in a right hand fill pump side and the hoses are long enough to stretch it around. No window cleaning stuff my biggest complaint at the filling place.

I agree that Costco parking lots are good, for all the reasons you already mentioned

At the other extreme is Walmart

I don’t shop there personally

But I’ve accompanied my brother there a few times . . . for HIS purchases

I don’t like there parking lots . . . at all. Everything about them is horrible

Some of the higher end grocery stores have good parking lots, as well

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I rarely shop at Walmart, but if you think that their parking lots are bad, there are some supermarket parking lots in my area that are even worse.

Take one part inadequate acreage for the lot, add-in spaces that are narrower than the norm nowadays, and then pile too-seldom shopping cart round-up onto the list and you have a parking hell that I try to avoid if at all possible.

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I’ve noticed it too and appreciate it.

Many zoning laws require “X” number of parking spaces for “X” amount of retail space and land costs money so there’s an incentive to keep the size of the parking spaces as small as possible and eliminate any “wasted space” like walkways, islands, etc. to squeeze out an extra nickel…

Having tried both Costco and the other “Big Box Discounter” I’d rather spend a few extra pennies and get to my car safely without the dents and dings.

One of the many things that I admire about Costco is their establishment of “seniors-only hours”, which are from 9-10AM, M-F. Just as they always did, they open to the general public at 10AM, but that first hour is reserved for “seniors”, and for nurses with hospital I.D.

Yesterday was typical for me:
I left my house at 8:55, arrived at Costco at 9:10, was back at my car-- stashing my loot–by 9:45, and was back home by 10:05. The store is so devoid of customers at that hour that I can take care of business there really rapidly, and have lots of time the rest of the day for hiking and other activities.

And, because the store is so empty at that early hour, so is the parking lot.
I park at the far end of their large lot, making sure to take a space where I can “front out”.
Most people park closer to the store, but sometimes someone will park in back of me in that isolated area… even though there are literally a couple of hundred spaces where they could also “front out”.

you have to consider landscaping and islands required by ordinance, we had a video store that did not round the end of the landscape islands, they were triangular to a point, that got me too many times.

Some businesses in MA and NH have ridiculously narrow parking spaces. Some are so narrow that you can’t fit a fill size truck in them. The tires over extend on both sides. The brain trust that do this think that they can fit more vehicles in the parking lot. If everyone drove Honda Civics then yes…but we don’t. By narrowing the parking spaces there are now actually fewer parking spots because the trucks are taking up two or 3 spots. So stupid.

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Our local COSTCO is 1-1/2 years young.
CSA
:palm_tree: :sunglasses: :palm_tree:

Actually I haven’t noticed the double lines before but haven’t been there for a year. I do like the walkways but don’t they know that pavement paint is expensive? Of course in winter time up north, all bets are off and people park all over the place. Can’t see the lines.

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That’s the case here too, not that people stay within the lines any other time of the year. The grocery store where I work could widen the spaces a little but you’re risking door dings to park at Trader Joe’s or Barnes & Noble across the street because of how narrow the spaces are.

No Costco stores in the Buffalo or Niagara Falls NY area and none are planned. They stated that they did not want to “canalize” their stores in nearby Canada. Ikea and Staples also do not have stores in our area.

Seems ridiculous to me. Since 9/11 it has been tedious to cross the border unless you do it frequently enough to spring for a nexus pass and with the animosity between Gov. Cuomo of NY and President Trump, NY residents could not qualify for trusted traveler status. We have not been able to enter Canada for a year anyway.

I never liked Walmart, but salute the way they handled the covid crisis. They kept some very large employees at the store entrances, you WILL NOT enter without a mask. They are the only grocery outlet in our area that offers absolutely free grocery pickup. Every other one uses Instacart or like services that mark up the prices.

I used to order things like motor oil or over the counter meds online to pick up at the store so I only had to go just inside the entrance to pick them up. Now, if the item is marked online as pickup today, there is no minimum order and you go to the grocery pickup and they come out and put in your trunk. The grocery pickup slots are plenty wide where I go.

We have 2 compact cars, but yes we appreciate he wide spaces since it minimizes damage from swinging doors an makes loading easier.

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The Costco stores around me do not have double line spaces. I guess it’s because of the high cost of real estate. Costco does put its store wherever it gets the best deal, because they do not rely on impulse shoppers or shoppers who need only a few things. It’s all designed so that you think in terms of dropping a few hundred dollars each time you go there.

In general their business model is good. Not much choice, but what they sell they stand behind, so their choices are generally of quality things. I buy tires and batteries from them and they honor the warranties with no questions, and their records of when purchased, etc., are complete and national. They double manufacturers warranties on TV’s and similar stuff if you buy from them or if you buy using their credit card.

In Northern California Trader Joe’s has the worst parking lots. Also the second worst. Their lots are a textbook example of terrible. It seems they rent stores that have become too small and congested for regular supermarkets.

We have a lot of businesses here in NH and MA that have the double line, but they are still very narrow. My Highlander wheels can fit inside the inner lines.

Yes, but that doesn’t mean that one has to consistently buy that way. The common misconception about Costco is that everything is sold in bulk. Yes, you can certainly buy a humongous bag of Doritos, but you can also buy normal-sized packages of strawberries, blueberries, half & half, cheeses–and quite a few other items. While I sometimes run-up a bill of ~$150, there are some weeks when my tab is in the range of $45-$65.

My usual weekly buys include the aforementioned items–all at substantially lower prices than at a supermarket–but sometimes they are supplemented with things like my new Smartphone, which was priced–literally–a few hundred $$ less than what anyone else was charging.

And, like you, I buy my tires and my car batteries from them. With tires, what looks like a good price becomes an even better price when you factor in the free lifetime repairs, rotations, and balancing. And, I don’t think that any other tire store charges less for replacing your TPMS wheel sensors

Wife has TPMS, terrible PMS, I’m taking her in Monday :wink:

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I’m curious…Which one? Did you get the Samsung Galaxy S21? S21+? S21Ultra? Other?

Not only is parking super, but it is convenient having the COSTCO gas station in the same parking lot. I can fill up before parking and shopping or afterward.

What I like about electronics purchases is that you get 90 days to try them out. You can return a big old TV, with or without receipt, within that 90 days, no problem.
CSA
:palm_tree: :sunglasses: :palm_tree: