What it Was Like Shopping Sam’s Club After Being a 10 Year BJ’s Member

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I’ve been a BJ’s member for over 10 years. Last April 2019 I checked out Costco and became a member. Now with the excitement of shopping at wholesale clubs and running these blogs I saw a deal for Sam’s Club.

This deal is one I couldn’t pass up. It was a great way to try out the club. The Membership deal I scored and (you still can too) is $45 for the year and then you get $45 off your first shopping trip. You don’t have to spend more to get it.

It’s awesome and sign up if you have a Sam’s close to you.

I’ve been hesitant because our Sam’s club is a 45 minute drive. I won’t be going weekly but it is still worth checking out monthly. Plus I’ve noticed Sam’s Club one days sales are pretty good and you can shop online.

When I first walked into Sam’s club they have someone checking memberships, just like Costco. BJ’s doesn’t do this.

The member service area was a small kiosk. With small modern looking computers and three employees. It was easy to walk over and give my driver license to obtain my Sam’s membership card. Because I purchased online I went to pick up my card in club.

It was all of five minutes if that to get signed in, cards and picture taken.

The store was overall busy for a Tuesday morning but nothing like Costco on the weekend.

There was a food court like Costco which is a win when you are shopping with kids. Something BJs got rid of a few years ago.

sam's club experience firs time

I noticed the layout to feel similar to BJ’s and Costco. I would say the coloring throughout the store reminded me of BJ’s. But the way the aisles are laid out was similar to Costco.

The treasure trove area was filled with spring flower pots and gardening items. There were swing sets out as well.

It was easy to find the meats and canned foods. It felt easy to shop throughout the store because of being a long time member at BJs.

I noticed a lot of Sam’s pricing ends in $0.98 which is not a sale price. This is a normal price. At Costco anything in a $0.97 ending is a clearance item. And at BJ’s if you see something with a $.98 ending it’s clearance too.

If you are a BJ’s member shopping at Sam’s you will need to train yourself to NOT think everything is a deal. I love my clearance shopping and I had to say, this isn’t a sale or deal, it’s a regular price.

Read or Pin: How to Read BJ’s Pricing Signs

I found the options of snacks to be greater than at our local Costco. Sam’s has a lot more name brand items than I found Costco to have. This is something BJ’s has over Costco as well.

Sam’s does have it’s own store brand- Member’s Mark.

I did end up finding some clearance and markdowns at Sam’s. Sam’s has Member mark brand clothing as well. Girls T-shirts with sequin were priced at $5.98.

Out of all three wholesale clubs, Costco is my favorite to find super cheap clothing. I’m sure Sam’s does too, and it’s unfair to really put it in this category only going in one time. BJ’s does too, but not as frequent as our local Costco.

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I checked out the $4.98 Rotisserie chicken. This is the same price as BJs and Costco. Didn’t pick one up to try it though. ( Well it is one penny cheaper technically!)

Sam’s had plenty of premade meals to make like Costco– with a giant sized pot pie. BJ’s has slowly started rolling out ready to eat foods. I did a review on those at BJs here.

sams club fresh made meals
sams club fresh made meals

I noticed cute farmhouse type signs of course. I’m all about decorating our home farmhouse style.

Easter dresses were out and priced at $16.98. Costco has theirs out too and seem to be slightly cheaper. I have to say Costco hands down has amazing prices on clothing.

I had to look for the very well loved Members Mark Chicken Nuggets that are suppose to taste like Chick Fil -A’s. Heads up we tried them and LOVE them.

They are similar to Chick Fil A’s. For $9.98 a bag it’s worth it and cheaper than taking the entire family out.

You can use Ibotta and the Fetch app to save even more at Sam’s. I ended up using Ibotta for the Veggie Straws deal.

I did notice the same brand Philadelphia cream cheese is only $8.98 at Sam’s. Where BJ’s is $11.99. Even after a coupon this is a better deal.

I love my Starbucks coffee and getting it at BJs has been a money saver. BJs and Sam’s are pretty close in price when they have it on sale. BJs is $19.99 for French Roast but they offer $5 coupons frequently. Sam’s right now has an instant savings making it $13.98. BUT Sam’s regular price is only $17.98.

We didn’t have to wait in line. There were plenty of self checkouts and regular cashiers too. You don’t need to take items out of the cart- which I personally love.

She’s sick of me taking so many pictures!

I ended up spending $18 out of pocket. The instant $45 came off once I scanned everything and hit payment. Remember the instant savings won’t apply to any item that is on sale. I can’t wait to go back and share more savings and tips with you at Sam’s.

Another smart thing when you go to leave the store, the employee scans your receipt and scans one item in your cart. Seems like a better way to actually check if things are correct.


I know at BJ’s many of the door checkers quickly scan and move on.

Overall I enjoyed shopping at Sam’s. It is further away than BJ’s and Costco for me, so we will see how much I use it over the course of the year.

I think there is a huge benefit to shopping multiple clubs. Location is a huge factor in this decision. If you do want to shop multiple clubs I suggest making sure you turn off automatic renewals so you can grab a deal each time.

If you are a longtime Sam’s shopper share your favorite things below?

Don’t forget to sign up for this awesome limited time Sam’s club membership deal HERE.

  • For BJs membership deal go here
  • For Costco Membership deal go here

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