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Sam’s Club: Try Sam’s Club without a membership this weekend (no upcharge)

This weekend only (August 6-8, 2010), you can try Sam’s Club out without having a membership.

I’m excited about this because we let our membership expire since we didn’t feel like we were saving money by having it. However, I’m going to jump at the opportunity to stock up on yeast — and possibly a few other baking supplies.

If you do quite a bit of baking and use yeast on a regular basis, you will save an arm and a leg by buying your yeast in bulk. Sam’s Club sells it for $6 per 2-lbs. last I checked and you can keep these in the freezer for at least two years. I just use the yeast straight out of the freezer when baking.

By the way, if you want to do a cost-comparison of Sam’s Club prices versus what you usually pay, they have all of their pries listed right on their website.

Thanks, The Gluten-Free Casein-Free Pantry!

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  1. flutemom says

    i keep my yeast in the freezer in its original wrapping and in a ziploc bag for extra protection. i’ve had it in for longer than 4 years….. (and it’s still good!!)

    • Jessica says

      @Betsy Durand,

      For people who don’t use coupons Sam’s Club or Costco would be a better deal for them. But I would never be able to find a good deal at either store on diapers unless they dropped their prices down to a $1-2 a pack, b/c that’s the most I will pay. I guess it really depends on the shopping habits of the one buying.

    • says

      @Betsy Durand,

      I used to buy diapers there, way back when, when I didn’t know better. I didn’t mind their brand and thought I was saving money.

      Now if I shop sales/rebates and combine with coupons, I am getting my brand name diapers MUCH cheaper than I was there.

  2. Staci says

    @ Jenae

    I think that’s why they mean when they say no upcharge. So hopefully not, because I’m definitely taking advantage of this!

  3. Jen says

    Other than yeast and rice, what else is worth stocking up on at Sam’s? I am like you, Crystal, did it for a year and didn’t feel like I saved the $40-$50 it cost for the membership.
    If we can get a list going of what other people stock up on from there, that would be great.

    • Melissa says

      @Jen, You can buy a large chunk of lunch meat (like they sell in the deli) and they will slice it free in the meat dept. It freezes well. I sometimes will buy a ham and have half of it sliced thin for sandwiches and the other half thick to chunk for casseroles, breakfast burritos and breakfast pizza.

  4. says

    I am also wondering what else is a true value at Sam’s Club. How about flour? I can buy a 5lb bag of whole wheat flour for, what, $3 at Walmart — what is the price for a jumbo scary Sam’s Club parcel?

  5. Martha says

    Try checking their website think the prices on they reflect your local store. And yes that no upcharge does away with the 10% charge.

    • Jenna says

      @Everything’s Coming Up Daffodils, Nope. Sam’s Club is part of the Wal-mart empire while Costco is a seperate, Seattle based entity. I like Costco better but I’ve never seen them do a free membership day. They do tell you, however, that they will refund your membership at anytime for any reason. So, you could try it for a few months and if it’s not worth it to you then cancel it.

      • Rae says

        @Jenna, I also heard that you can shop at Costco without a membership if you have a giftcard for them. So if you know somebody with a membership, they can buy you giftcards and you can use them.

  6. says

    I, too, dropped my membership because I can get better deals elsewhere. I will, however, be going this weekend since it’s free. I’ll be buying yeast and butter and maybe some other dairy products. I’m curious what others stock on on, too. I wish they carried big bags of unbleached flour — as I recall theirs is bleached and I’m picky about my flour.

  7. Melanie says

    Things that are cheaper than stores and/or are sometimes hard to find coupons for:

    milk ($2.65 a gallon – freezes well)
    half n half / whipping cream
    fresh spinach
    big bags of grated cheese ($2 /lb.)
    semi-sweet choc chips
    salmon – canned
    boneless skinless chicken (sale priced for most stores)
    10 lb clear tubs of lean burger – ($2.27 – $2.45 / lb.)
    cottage cheese
    10 lb potatoes
    wheat loaf bread (if you don’t make your own)

  8. liz says

    I’ve kept my Sam’s card for the fresh food. I buy:
    carrots (whole,not baby)
    celery hearts (really cheap!)
    salad (big bags of salad for under $3)
    chicken breasts (when they clearance it near it’s date, it’s 1.62/lb)

  9. Heather says

    In addition to what others have said:

    **e.v. olive oil
    **Italian sausage (good brand w/o BHT – usually $1.98 lb – divide up into Ziplocs and freeze- small amount can really stretch far in a pot of beans, on pizza, spaghetti, etc.)

    **Spices like chili powder are cheaper and of better quality than getting it our local Mennonite store.

    **Whipping cream is half the price of reg. store. I can make a LOT of homemade ice cream with that and the half and half! So good, and no filler junk in it.

    Wish they carried unbleached flour.

  10. Courtney says

    I don’t shop at Sam’s as much since we’ve been eating mostly organic produce, dairy and meat – wish they had more organic items! But we still find the following things to be a bargain there:

    brown sugar
    baking soda
    chocolate chips
    frozen veggies
    oil (canola, olive)
    onions & garlic
    mixed nuts
    kitty litter
    cetaphil moisturizer
    boca burgers

  11. says

    I keep my membership up with Sam’s Club. Because I work full time and am a single (t-ball, soccer, swimming, [insert after school activity here] mom, I unfortunately have to depend on alot of convenience type foods. I get chicken nuggets, fish sticks, hot dogs, cheese sticks, frozen waffels,etc.. Juice (large jugs)come in 2 packs and is less than $4. Syrup also come in large size 2 packs. It’s also great for snack foods because they are bulk packages and last a long time. Between working full time, and all the sport activities…it’s always grab and go at this house.

    You do have to watch the prices, because sometimes you can get better deals at Walmart. If you are a frequent shopper you become familiar with pricing and know where the best deals are. I often buy Sams Club memberships for Christmas gifts and everyone seems thrilled. It’s the gift that keeps giving for a whole year. :-)

  12. Marla says

    We’re very fortunate to have a Costco very close to us and I go there all the time.I get all the basics like you all, but what I really love is that Costco will send us a store coupon packet every few months.I may only use one or two coupons but I’ve gotten some great deals.

  13. elizabeth says

    I have a Sam’s and Costco card , and to me the benefit is that I am in the regular store less frequently and for a shorter trip each time. For example, at Sam’s I purchase laundry detergent and bleach 2-3 times a year, and forget about it. Same with foil pans. For me Sam’s is better for household/cleaning stuff and costco is better for food, bc they have more organic. I do not go there every week or even every month, but just a few times a year to stock up. Then I fill in the gaps with my coupon items at Publix, just quick trips. My contact lenses at Sam’s club are WAAAAYYYY cheaper then anywhere else, even online.

  14. says

    we get several things at Sam’s that are cheaper: taco seasoning, seasoning salt, milk, bread, chips(yea, not healthy but a once a month treat), bagels, muffins(when its too hot to bake), produce, cheese(especially if you like specialty cheeses), ice cream, boneless skinless chicken breasts(i usually find them for $1.97/lb vs. $3.xx at Walmart), minute maid juice boxes($0.50 per pack cheaper, sold with 4 packs), salad, evoo, and shrimp are some of our usual purchases.

    I even get vegetable oil out there(wesson gallon is usually about $1 cheaper than the great value brand gallon)

    as long as you know your price per unit, you can find some good deals!

  15. Marie says

    The main items we buy at Sam’s Club is Acuvue contacts and tires. They had the BEST price on both that we could find anywhere. Sams club offers warranty on tires that if you get a nail in it, etc, they will replace it, and thats hard to find anywhere anymore. Also, real vanilla, extra virgin olive oil, bulk spices, etc. You have to know your prices, but they have great prices on some items. Tires alone, we saved $120 off the nearest competitions price. However, these were mud tires for hubbys jeep. Contacts, I searched all over and saved a good amt of money buying them from Sam’s.

  16. Chipy says

    I did a complete comparison to our local prices and Sam’s prices for just about everything on our montly menu plan. Took me a long time and quite the spreadsheet but now I know which things I can get for a better price per ounce or unit at which place. Guessing most people don’t want to do that but if you are going there for free this weekend, take a pen and paper with you and write down the prices and the units (ounces). Then you can start to compare things to what you usually pay and be able to tell if it is really worth it. I figured we save about $40 a month if we shop there and stock up on things. And you will be surprised that some things are cheaper at the local store…not everything there is deals be careful!

    Some things I find big savings on (over a $1):
    Sticks of butter
    Diet Coke (cans)
    Lunch Meat (Deli Fresh)
    Pudding (individuals)
    Ritz Crackers
    Digirono Pizzas
    Packs of Gun (Wrigleys)
    Oscar Myer Hot Dogs
    ***Chocolate Chips
    Cheese (big bags of shredded, string, & slices)
    Spaghetti Noodles
    Spaghetti Sause
    Swiss Mix (Hot Chocoloate packs)

    I am sure there are a lot more but those are the big things that we frequently buy.

    ***This is almost a $5 savings and since my husband eats the by the handful all the time we go through one bag a month (72 ounces!)

  17. Mar says

    I’m actually defrosting my big upright freezer as I type because I’m taking this opportunity to shop at Sam’s since I don’t have a membership – doesn’t seem quite worth it for two people. My daughter is super excited because we are going to stock up on frozen grilled chicken sandwiches, presuming they still carry them and have them in stock. I’m also going to buy yeast. The store closest to me has 2 pounds for $4.38 and a store a few miles away has it for $3.68 (per the website). We’ll also get lots of Gatorade and other drinks for school lunches and hopefully they have a decent price on Apple Jacks, my daughter’s favorite cereal (I know, I know…). I’ll be going up and down all the aisles to see what they have.

  18. Nicole says

    Ditto on the yeast for me! Got excited as soon as I saw the Sam’s flyer. Thanks for the reminder about the tomato sauce~I have a great recipe that uses the 6lb. cans. Might get some vanilla depends on what the price is right now. And dh’s all time fave: rotisserie chickens!

  19. Sarah says

    Just got back from my Sam’s trip here in AZ. It was great…nothing needed at the door or checking out. There was no upcharge (no 10 or 5 % added!)

    Check for the clearance in the back corner of the store…never know what your store may have. Mine had lots of spices on clearance and they were good until 2013! It was just the packaging had changed! (an answer to a specific prayer this morning since my Costco no longer sells Basil and I wanted to find a decent bulk deal…thank you, Lord!)

    I also found a clothing table with clearance items. Got two cute Carter’s 9-month 1-piece outfits (nicer and cuter than onesies) for only $2.79 each!

    I got several spices for a lot cheaper as well as Hershey’s Baking Cocoa and a huge bag of frozen Broccoli Florets. My yeast was only $4.38 for 2lbs! YAY!

  20. Virginia says

    I just feel I have to put a plug in for Sam’s and it’s customer-friendly service. Our MOPS group (near Indianapolis, Indiana) recently hosted a Touch-a-Truck event that was not well-attended due to a torrential downpour and unseasonably cool temps. We had purchased hot dogs, buns, chips, cookies, and drinks from Sam’s Club and ended up with A LOT left over. The worst part was that even though the packages were unopened, they had gotten very wet and smashed when the rain hit. Sam’s Club took them back and refunded our money with no hassles at all! They were great!!!!!!!

  21. Emily says

    Argh. Successful visit this morning. At ours, you could go in the store during the early (premium?) hours. Very helpful. BUT they didn’t accept my VISA credit card. ARGH! I had to leave my groceries and run to the bank to get some more cash for my purchase!!!

  22. says

    We went tonight and bought:
    milk – $1.88/gallon
    bananas – $.89/3 pounds
    yeast – $4.38/2 pounds
    whole wheat bread – $2.98/2 loaves

    And we enjoyed the free samples and “splurged” on hot dogs for dinner. 😉 I got 12 pounds of bananas, and plan on freezing those we don’t use up right away. Everything I bought was better than what I can get at the grocery store, so I’m happy. :) We don’t have a membership, won’t be getting one either…but it was nice to get in and be able to take advantage of their prices on the above items.

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