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Lines already forming at Costco

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Costco employees unload and distribute the first pallets of merchandise at the new Costco on Sept. 28. Photo by Dan Henry

The much anticipated opening of Costco Wholesale may not take place until 8 a.m., Wednesday, Oct. 27, but people are already lining up at the membership desk.

According to Bob Palermo, the store’s general manager, local reaction to Costco has been better than expected with a steady stream of potential customers inquiring about memberships.

“We are more than pleased,” he said. “I just sent an e-mail to the home office that said, ‘That bright light you see north of Atlanta is me smiling.’”

The retail giant operates as a members-only warehouse club, where shoppers can avail themselves of what company literature describes as “an array of the highest-quality products available” at substantial savings.

Nationwide, more than 59 million are members at either of the club’s two general membership levels.

Gold Star Members pay an annual fee of $50 (new members receive a $10 cash card on joining) while Executive Membership is priced at $100 annually with new members receiving a $20 cash card.

Among other benefits, Executive level members earn 2 percent rewards (up to $500 annually) on purchases with a guarantee that rewards equal at least $50 or Costco makes up the difference.

The company is so certain of its ability to meet or exceed expectations that the membership will be refunded in full at any time if the customer is dissatisfied.

Memberships are not the only thing currently on sale at the 156,000-square-foot store located on Scruggs Road near the Cloud Springs Road/Interstate 75 interchange.

New and current members can buy gasoline (no diesel) at the Costco gas station where last week’s prices for regular were $2.39 per gallon.

Employees are busy stocking the store for its full opening in two weeks.

“We’re receiving about five trucks (of merchandise) a day,” said Palermo.

Comments

Welcome to the community, Costco! Why not set up satellite registration and membership sign-ups in additional FO and Ringgold locations? It would be a benefit to your customers and to you, I would think.

Just a thought.