Here are some tips on holiday hiring at Costco, gathered from Costco employees posting on Reddit.

Last updated 10/20/2023


How to apply for a seasonal job at Costco

Are you interested in working at Costco this holiday season (and beyond)? Here are some steps and tips to help you get started.

  • First, you need to fill out an online application form. Make sure to select ALL for positions, so you have more chances of getting hired.
  • Next, you might want to visit your local warehouse and talk to a manager about your application. This is not required, but it could give you an edge over other applicants. Some warehouses get very busy, especially during the seasonal hiring period, which is happening right now. The best time to go is about an hour after they open, any day of the week. Ask for the hiring manager, if they have one, and introduce yourself.
  • Then, you need to prepare for your interview. You should dress casually, but not too casually. Jeans and a polo shirt or a nice blouse are fine. Don’t wear a suit and tie, that’s too formal for Costco.
  • Also, you should be ready for a drug test. Costco does test for drugs, including weed. They use an oral swab test, which can be done on the same day as your interview. So, be prepared (wink wink). Of course, your local laws and regulations may vary, so check them before you apply.
  • During the interview, they will ask you questions about your past experiences. For example: what jobs have you had before? What projects have you done at school? How have you dealt with difficult situations or customers? These are some common questions:
    • Tell me about a time when you handled a difficult customer or situation.
    • Why do you want to work at Costco?
    • Have you ever worked with someone who was unproductive? How did you resolve the issue?
  • The applicants who don’t get hired never admit to their own flaws or failures and point fingers at others for their problems. You’ll do well if you demonstrate that you can improve yourself and learn from your mistakes.

Don’t worry if you are nervous. That’s normal. Most people are not good at interviews. They will look beyond that and see your potential.

What to expect as a seasonal Costco employee

If you get hired, congratulations! Here are some things you should know about working at Costco.

  • Your starting pay will be $18.50 per hour.
  • Your hours will vary depending on your warehouse. Some warehouses give employees at least 24 hours per week, while others give more, usually 28-32.
  • Your orientation will consist of watching some videos about Costco’s history and values, filling out some paperwork for payroll, touring the warehouse, and learning more about your role and responsibilities.
  • As a seasonal employee, you will not receive any benefits, such as holiday pay, paid vacation, or health insurance.
  • Your seasonal period will last from October 7 until the first Tuesday after January 2. After that, your status will change depending on how long you have worked and how well you have performed. If you have not completed your 90-day probationary period by then, you will become a probationary employee until you do. If you have completed your 90-day probationary period by then, you will stay as a seasonal employee until the end of the season.
  • As a seasonal employee:
    • You will not get paid for holidays.
    • You will not have a guaranteed number of hours per week.
    • You will not get paid vacation time.
    • You will not count as a full-time employee or be eligible for promotion.
    • You can be fired at any time during the season.
  • If you already have a “day job” and just want to earn some extra income during the holidays, Night Merch might be a great option for you. You will help stock the shelves and freezers after the warehouse closes, and assist the front end before that. The shifts are usually from 6 to 11 PM on weekdays and from 4 to 9 PM on weekends, but sometimes they might ask you to come earlier if they need more help. Just keep in mind that Costco won’t adjust your schedule to fit your other job.

How to get hired as a permanent employee

If you want to stay at Costco after the seasonal period ends, here are some tips to increase your chances of getting hired permanently.

  • Show up on time and work hard. This will show that you are reliable and dedicated.
  • Express interest in learning new skills and working in different departments. Most seasonal employees start as front end assistants, but there are many other opportunities at Costco. Ask your supervisor if you can cross-train in food court, night merchandising, bakery, and so on. This will show that you are flexible and adaptable.
  • Ask about programs and how to get involved. Costco has many programs that reward employees for their performance and loyalty. Some examples are Citi table, executive upgrades, auto renew program, and so on. This will show that you are enthusiastic and motivated.

We hope this helps! Good luck with your application! 😊