Are Diapers Really Cheaper at Costco? (VS Sam’s Club, Amazon, etc)

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Everyone knows that diapers are a recurring baby expense that adds up fast. You can’t just stop buying diapers (at least not for the first several years!), but you can shop smart and find the best deals to get the most bang for your buck. You expect to save money when you buy in bulk at wholesale stores like Costco, but does that apply to diapers?

Costco may not save you the most money when purchasing diapers, but the $60 membership fee may be worth it if you choose to do much of your shopping at the warehouse store. Overall, purchasing Huggies diapers at Costco is likely to save you money, but you’re better off purchasing other store’s house brands if you’re really looking to save money.

Keep reading for a per-diaper cost breakdown of Costco diapers, as well as a side-by-side comparison of how Costco’s diapers compare to some major competitors

Is it cheaper to buy diapers at Costco?

New parents will change an average of 2,500 diapers before their baby’s first birthday (give or take), and they probably won’t stop then.

So where can you find the cheapest diapers? Does buying diapers in bulk at Costco offer the best deal on disposables? Believe it or not, you may be able to do better.

While diapers likely weren’t an object of discussion before the positive pregnancy test, the type and cost will definitely become a topic by baby’s arrival. (In fact, diapers – and all that comes with them – will become surprisingly normal things to discuss!)

The ability of the diaper to deliver plays a part in choosing a brand, but usually the decision on what to use to cover baby’s business end comes down to the bottom line: cost.

Assuming you’ve made your peace in the cloth and organic debate, let’s break down the affordable disposable diaper options compared to buying at Costco.

It turns out that if price were the only consideration in buying a covering for baby’s back end, Costco isn’t the cheapest option. It’s actually Walmart who offers the lowest prices consistently (at 10 cents per diaper, it doesn’t break the bank to diaper the baby). But there are some caveats to consider.

And it’s possible that sometimes Costco will have lower prices at individual stores than what’s regularly advertised online. There are perks to shopping locally, and spending a few minutes doing the actual footwork may make a difference in how deep you have to reach into your pocket for change.

It’s also worth mentioning, but consider fit and capability as well as price. Some tired parents may be willing to sacrifice a few cents per change to buy the major brands if they work better on certain little body types:

  • Some might cause a rash that others don’t.
  • Some have a scent or feeling that’s more pleasant than the others.
  • Some move better on wiggly infants or crawlers.
  • Some are just more proficient at handling explosions or overnights, and that’s worth a lot more than cash!

Ultimately, there are many good options available to keep your baby clean and dry. Costco isn’t the cheapest place, but it does offer some decent savings. A little trial and error, and maybe the price of membership, and you’ll be happy to know that change is good (and can be economical too!)

Cost of a Costco membership

Costco Gold Star Membership (their basic package) is $60 a year, or you can upgrade to the Gold Star Executive membership for $120 a year.

Membership at Costco does come with perks. With over 760 locations in the U.S, the warehouse superstore offers lots of deals from automotive repair and inexpensive wine to numerous everyday bulk items. A major benefit of membership is free shipping and delivery for most items. And unlike other membership stores (like BJs or Sam’s Club), you can shop without buying a membership, just remember a 5% fee will be added when you check out.

Buying in bulk can often be more affordable in the long run. Plus, no one wants to suddenly run out of diapers (or wine)!

Basically, if you expect to spend more than $250 a month at Costco, investing in the basic membership is worth it.

How much do diapers cost at Costco?

You won’t be sneaking out the doors surreptitiously with just enough diapers to get you through the weekend here. Boxes are an investment, but that also means the cost per use decreases.

Let’s look at the basic breakdown for several major brands as compared to Costco’s store brand, Kirkland Signature.

Huggies

Size 1 – Huggies Size 1 diapers currently cost $39.99 for a box containing 180 diapers. This means that each diaper costs $0.21.

Size 2 – This box also costs $39.99, and contains 174 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.23.

Size 3 – This box costs $45.99, and contains 198 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.23.

Size 4 – This box costs $45.99, and contains 180 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.26.

Size 5 – This box costs $45.99, and contains 150 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.31.

Size 6 – This box costs $45.99, and contains 120 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.38.

Pampers

Unlike many major retailers, Costco does not carry Pampers brand diapers.

Luvs

Unlike many major retailers, Costco does not carry Luvs brand diapers.

Kirkland Signature

Size 1 – Kirkland Signature size 1 diapers currently cost $29.99 for a box containing 192 diapers. This means that each diaper costs $0.16.

Size 2 – This box also costs $29.99, and contains 174 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.17.

Size 3 – This box costs $35.99, and contains 198 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.18.

Size 4 – This box costs $35.99, and contains 180 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.20.

Size 5 – This box costs $35.99, and contains 150 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.24.

Size 6 – This box costs $35.99, and contains 120 diapers. Each diaper costs $0.30.

Is it cheaper to buy diapers at Costco than Target?

Target’s claim to consumers is slightly higher-end branding than other box stores, while still offering a great selection for a decent cost. As they’ve expanded, Target has been able to negotiate better deals on many staples, including diapers, however, it is not enough to compete with Costco’s bulk savings.

Huggies

Buying Huggies diapers at Costco will save you anywhere from $0.03 to $0.07 per diaper over Target.

It’s worth noting that Target often offers deals when you buy more than one package of the name brand diapers, which can significantly lower the cost in the long run.

Cost of Huggies Diapers - Costco vs. Target

SizeCostcoTarget
1$0.21
(pack of 180)
$0.24
(pack of 168)
2$0.23
(pack of 174)
$0.27
(pack of 148)
3$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.29
(pack of 136)
4$0.26
(pack of 180)
$0.33
(pack of 120)
5$0.31
(pack of 150)
$0.38
(pack of 104)
6$0.38
(pack of 120)
$0.45
(pack of 88)

Kirkland Signature vs. Up & Up

Target easily beats Costco prices with their store brand.

Cost of House-Brand Diapers - Costco vs. Target

SizeCostco
(Kirkland Signature)
Target
(Up & Up)
1$0.16
(pack of 192)
$0.11
(pack of 192
2$0.17
(pack of 174)
$0.12
(pack of 184)
3$0.18
(pack of 198)
$0.13
(pack of 228)
4$0.20
(pack of 180)
$0.15
(pack of 204)
5$0.24
(pack of 150)
$0.16
(pack of 186)
6$0.30
(pack of 120)
$0.18
(pack of 164)

Is it cheaper to buy diapers at Sam’s Club than Costco?

Similar to Costco, Sam’s Club sells to members at a discount. Their basic membership is $45 annually. Unlike Costco, you cannot shop without buying the membership, and the basic plan does not include free shipping (although the more expensive Plus plan does). There are more than 600 locations around the U.S, many in close proximity to their competition.

The competition may be fierce for other types of merchandise, but when it comes to diapers, a visit to Sam’s Club offers cheaper boxes than Costco on all brands including their own.

Huggies

Overall, Huggies diapers are about 2 cents less per diaper at Costco than at Sam’s Club.

Cost of Huggies Diapers - Costco vs. Sam's Club

SizeCostcoSam's Club
1$0.21
(pack of 192)
$0.19
(pack of 180)
2$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.21
(pack of 162)
3$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.22
(pack of 180)
4$0.26
(pack of 180)
$0.24
(pack of 160)
5$0.31
(pack of 150)
$0.29
(pack of 136)
6$0.38
(pack of 120)
$0.35
(pack of 112)

Kirkland Signature vs. Member’s Mark

Member’s Mark diapers at Sam’s Club are consistently 3-4 cents per diaper cheaper than the Kirkland Signature diapers available at Costco. That kind of savings can really add up!

Cost of Store-Brand Diapers - Costco vs. Sam's Club

SizeCostco
(Kirkland Signature)
Sam's Club
(Member's Mark)
1$0.16
(pack of 192)
$0.12
(pack of 176)
2$0.17
(pack of 174)
$0.14
(pack of 196)
3$0.18
(pack of 198)
$0.15
(pack of 234)
4$0.20
(pack of 180)
$0.17
(pack of 210)
5$0.24
(pack of 150)
$0.21
(pack of 168)
6$0.30
(pack of 120)
$0.23
(pack of 150)

Is it cheaper to buy diapers at Costco than Walmart?

Walmart is known for its low prices, but it’s not necessarily the best place to buy diapers.

Huggies

If you have a Costo membership, you can save at least three cents (and up to ten cents!) per diaper on Huggies.

Cost of Huggies Diapers - Costco vs. Walmart

SizeCostcoWalmart
1$0.21
(pack of 192)
$0.24
(pack of 168)
2$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.26
(pack of 180)
3$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.29
(pack of 136)
4$0.26
(pack of 180)
$0.33
(pack of 140)
5$0.31
(pack of 150)
$0.38
(pack of 120)
6$0.38
(pack of 120)
$0.48
(pack of 50)

Kirkland Signature vs. Parent’s Choice

Walmart’s Parent’s Choice diapers are consistently significantly less per diaper than Costco’s Kirkland Signature brands.

Cost of Store-Brand Diapers - Costco vs. Walmart

SizeCostco
(Kirkland Signature)
Walmart
(Parent's Choice)
1$0.16
(pack of 192)
$0.09
(pack of 416)
2$0.17
(pack of 174)
$0.10
(pack of 228)
3$0.18
(pack of 198)
$0.11
(pack of 210)
4$0.20
(pack of 180)
$0.17
(pack of 210)
5$0.24
(pack of 150)
$0.16
(pack of 108)
6$0.30
(pack of 120)
$0.19
(pack of 92)

Is it cheaper to buy diapers on Amazon or Costco?

Amazon has risen through the ranks to provide major competition with brick and mortar stores even for mundane purchases like dry goods.

Membership isn’t required to shop and order online through the giant virtual company, but Amazon does offer Prime Membership at an annual cost of $119 (you can sign up here for a free 30-day trial). Hundreds of items qualify for 2-day free shipping under this fee.

If you choose to sign up for Subscribe and Save, you can save 5% or even 20% on your diaper purchases.

Huggies

If you compare by the per-diaper cost, Costco is cheaper than Amazon for all sizes of Huggies diapers. That being said, Amazon offers additional discounts based on how much and what else you order. You may need to crunch the numbers to find out which one is better for your family’s budget and lifestyle.

Cost of Huggies Diapers - Costco vs. Amazon

SizeCostcoAmazon
1$0.21
(pack of 192)
$0.24
(pack of 198)
2$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.26
(pack of 180)
3$0.23
(pack of 198)
$0.29
(pack of 156)
4$0.26
(pack of 180)
$0.33
(pack of 140)
5$0.31
(pack of 150)
$0.38
(pack of 120)
6$0.38
(pack of 120)
$0.49
(pack of 96)

Kirkland Signature vs. Mama Bear

Amazon wins this one hands down. Even without subscription discounts, Amazon’s Mama Bear brand comes in 3-4 cents under Costco’s Kirkland Signature per diaper.

Cost of House-Brand Diapers - Costco vs. Amazon

SizeCostco
(Kirkland Signature)
Amazon
(Mama Bear)
1$0.16
(pack of 192)
$0.12
(pack of 49)
2$0.17
(pack of 174)
$0.13
(pack of 46)
3$0.18
(pack of 198)
$0.15
(pack of 42)
4$0.20
(pack of 180)
$0.17
(pack of 37)
5$0.24
(pack of 150)
$0.20
(pack of 33)
6$0.30
(pack of 120)
$0.24
(pack of 27)

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