4 things you didn't know about Costco, Sam's Club

PHOENIX - We all know shopping at warehouse stores can save you money by buying at a discount, but there are some Costco and Sam's Club facts that may surprise you.

Did you know that here in Arizona you don't actually need a membership to purchase certain items? Even better, Sam's Club offers potential members a free one-day pass!

Which store saves you the MOST money? Our Smart Shopper found out. View the full story.

In the spirit of saving money, here are five things you didn't know about Sam's Club and Costco that could help keep your wallet full:

1) Non-members can buy beer and liquor at wholesale prices

Stock up for your next party at a discount! In Arizona, you don't need a club membership to buy alcohol.

But, it's possible that an employee may not be aware of the Arizona rule, as it differs in every state. Make sure to be patient and just ask for a manager.

2) What about prescriptions or an eye exam?

At Costco, you don't need a membership to get prescriptions filled or to get an eye exam (cost may vary by location). However, you will have to pay with cash.

If you're looking for glasses, contacts or lenses, you will need a membership to purchase those items.

3) Can I try out a membership before buying it?

Sam's Club offers potential members a one-day pass that allows them to roam around the warehouse. The pass can be easily downloaded from the Sam's Club website and will allow you to make purchases. It's important to note that a 10 percent service fee applies to all non-member purchases.

Sam's Club also allows guests to purchase some items online, but they also apply a 10 percent service fee to the order.

4) Location, location, location

Sam's Club and Costco each have at least 10 locations here in the Valley. That's good news because saving money could literally be around the corner.

Find the Sam's Club or Costco closest to you.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of the article incorrectly stated the price of eye exams at Costco.

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