Can you shop at Costco with food stamps or an EBT card? Soaring grocery prices and a tight budget can limit the amount of essential groceries you can buy. Thankfully, EBT cards help you add fruits, vegetables, and other necessities to your cart. If you are a Costco member and enjoy the warehouse’s welcoming atmosphere, check out all you need to know about paying with EBT cards and food stamps here.
First Off – What Are Food Stamps/EBT Cards?
Food stamps and EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) cards provide a method to pay for groceries. According to living conditions, employment, and salary in each state, certain citizens will qualify for food stamps. An EBT card functions just like a debit or credit card and is issued by each state’s Welfare Department to eligible users.
If you think you qualify for one of these cards, be aware that the requirements vary from state to state. Food stamps and EBT cards are a part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for low-income families. These resources can protect your family from going hungry, so visit your local state page for more information.
Does Costco Take Food Stamps?
Costco does take food stamps at all of their warehouse locations, as well as their business center locations. Depending on your location, Costco follows the laws of the state where your store resides. Be sure to check any regulations that come along with your food stamps or EBT cards before shopping.
Can You Use EBT Cards Online?
Though large retailers like Amazon or Walmart allow you to shop with an EBT card online, Costco does not. You can only use EBT cards and food stamps while being physically present at the store, whether that means you have a membership or you are shopping with a friend who has one.
Check Out: How Much Is a Costco Membership?
Buying Groceries Using Food Stamps
Food stamps cannot buy everything you need when you go to the store. If you are wondering what you can buy with food stamps, check out our list below:
What Can You Buy With Food Stamps
- Fruits and vegetables
- Meat, poultry, and fish
- Dairy Products
- Bread and cereals
- Snack Foods
- Nonalcoholic beverages
- Seeds and plants that produce food
What Can’t You Buy With Food Stamps
- Alcoholic beverages
- Hot foods that are ready to consume/eat in-store
- Nonfood items (includes paper and cleaning products)
- Vitamins and medicine
- Live animals
Also Read: Is a Costco Membership Worth It?
Things to Consider While Using Food Stamps at Costco
If you haven’t gotten a Costco membership yet and use food stamps, always be aware of what you can and cannot spend money on. For instance, there are lots of great prices and discounts at Costco you can buy through EBT cards, but is it worth spending the annual fee? Or, does your family get the maximum benefits through the EBT cards? If not, then a Costco membership may not be worth it for your family.
But, if you have a friend that has a membership you’re in luck! Members can bring others in to shop with them, and you can use your EBT card at the register. Food stamps and EBT cards are there to help your family, so make sure to get the full benefits by shopping at Costco.