Whenever I talk to someone back in the States and I mention that I went to Sam’s Club, they often stop me mid-sentence and respond with something like: “You have Sam’s Club in Mexico? Wow, I never knew that!”
For some reason, the presence of chain stores in Mexico comes as a huge surprise to some people.
When I follow up by telling them that we have Costco, Home Depot, Sears etc., that really blows their mind.
Once they get over the initial shock that we don’t only shop at tiny stores and open markets, most people ask me follow-up questions like: Can I use my U.S. Sam’s Club card in Mexico? How much is a membership there?
I’ve been asked these two questions so often that I decided to do a quick post on the blog to answer them for everyone.
I’ll start by answering the first one. Yes, you can use your Sam’s Club card or Costco card internationally, and that includes in Mexico. I’m sure you will rest easy knowing that you can still buy toilet paper in bulk when traveling abroad.
Now let’s move on to the second question about membership fees.
Most things are less expensive in Mexico and shopping club memberships are no exception. In fact, the memberships are roughly half the price. Let’s take a look at a comparison:
Standard Membership– USA: $45 USD (plus sales tax); MEX $500 pesos* ($27.02 USD)
* The Sam’s Club Mexico website often shows the membership on sale for $400 pesos ($21.62 USD)
Standard Membership (Gold Star)- USA $60 USD (plus tax); MEX $500 Pesos ($27.02 USD)
Executive Membership: USA $120 USD (plus tax); MEX $1,100 pesos ($59.45 USD)
A Note About Sales Tax
In the comparison above, you may have noticed that after the U.S. prices, I included ‘(plus tax)’ but I didn’t do it after the Mexican prices. That’s because federal law in Mexico requires the displayed price to already include all taxes, fees, and/or commissions. In other words, the price you see, is the price you pay.
I really like that about Mexico.
Let’s Wrap This Up
When we lived in the U.S., I was too cheap to get a membership to Sam’s Club or Costco. The membership fees seemed excessive to me and I couldn’t imagine buying enough products in bulk to make it worth my while.
However, now that we are in Mexico, I have finally become a member of a shopping club for the first time in my life. I can stomach paying less than $30 USD a year, especially now that we’re saving money on almost everything else and have more disposable income.
An added bonus is that I will be able to use the card when I return to the U.S. for my annual Proof of Life Tour.