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Costco reverses decision, will continue senior shopping hours as COVID-19 cases rise

The announcement comes after the retailer had said it would be ending senior shopping hours on July 26.
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The special shopping hour is reserved for anyone over age 60, and those with disabilities and anyone who is immunocompromised.Chris Hondros / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

Costco is switching course and will continue its senior shopping hours indefinitely the company announced Monday. Previously, Costco had said senior shopping hours would end July 26, but in the wake of increasing COVID-19 cases due to vaccine hesitancy and the delta variant, the retailer will offer a designated shopping hour twice a week, instead of five days a week, beginning July 26. This shopping hour is reserved for anyone over age 60, and those with disabilities and anyone who is immunocompromised.

The designated time will be 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at warehouses in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Other guests will not be admitted at this time, though Costco members who are health care workers (which includes pharmacists and all hospital employees with a hospital ID) and first responders (police officers, EMTs and firefighters) may enter the warehouse during this hour, as well as during regular operating hours.

There are several U.S. locations with different hours:

  • Culver City, CA: 8:00 a.m. to 9 a.m., Monday through Friday.
  • Los Angeles, CA locations in Los Feliz, Northridge, Pacoima, Van Nuys, and Woodland Hills: 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Sunday through Friday, and 8:30 on Saturdays.
  • Richmond, CA: 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., Monday through Friday.
  • Iwilei (Honolulu), HI: 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., Monday through Friday.

The decision comes as new infections and hospitalizations have increased in all 50 states according to data from Johns Hopkins University coronavirus resource center.

Costco began its designated shopping hours in March 2020 and increased the number of days from two times a week to three times a week for its most at-risk customers. Then, in May 2020, the retailer resumed its normal operating hours and offered the designated shopping hour all weekday mornings at most locations.

Other retailers including Target, Walmart, BJ's and Aldi are continuing to promote senior shopping hours to their guests.