Costco Holiday Shopping

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Today as I was circling the parking lot of our local Costco and desperately trying to find a parking space, I realized there is a strategy to shopping this store near the holidays.

I was reminded that going to Costco mid morning is not a good idea! I decided to go to a bigger Costco in the city hoping they would have more room in the parking lot and the store. My hunch paid off.

As I was shopping I gathered a few tips to help you get in and out of Costco quickly.

1) Chose your time. If you can do it, go as soon as they open. They open earlier, (9AM) as opposed to 10, during the holidays. The second best time to shop is during supper, around 5 PM. Most people are at home eating, so take advantage of the somewhat quieter store.

2) Use the back entrance of the parking lot and be willing to walk a little further from your parking spot. This will make it faster to get in and out of the store. Don't waste time trying to find the closest stall.

3) In tighter areas of the store, park your cart. This is especially important in the produce cooler. Move your cart out of the way of the other customers and shop the cooler without it. Other areas I do this: books, DVD's and clothing.

4) If you stop to look at something or run into a long lost friend, don't stand in the middle of the aisle. Move your cart over and make sure others can pass by. This is common courtesy but people tend to forget in a busy store.

5) Don't choose the long line that eventually feeds into 3 or 4 tills. This line usually forms on either side of the granola bars/candy aisles. Go to the other end of the store, to the tills closest to the pharmacy. Those lines are much shorter.

6) Have a good attitude! Everyone is trying to get their shopping done, cashiers are tired, stores are loud. Keeping a smile on your face and going out of your way to be courteous to other customers will make your shopping a lot less stressful - who knows, you might enjoy it!