Those who live for the thrill of a good Costco return: Be warned. The superstore may put a stop to the madness.
Arguably one of the best perks of having a Costco membership is its welcoming return policy. With the exception of a few straightforward time limits on products, such as 90 days to return electronics and 48 hours to return diamonds, Costco is devoted to its shoppers' satisfaction and will refund purchases on most anything. But this leniency can also invite over-returners and earlier this month, one customer in Fairfax, Virginia actually got her membership revoked for that very reason.
It's not the first time stories of outlandish returns have circulated the Internet. On Reddit, Costco employee described a myriad of bizarre customer service attempts. One woman tried to return an empty bottle of wine because it "gave her a headache." Another person returned a safe that wreaked of marijuana.
"The police were called," the employee wrote.
Other successfully returned items included a 13-year-old fish that had been forgotten in the freezer, play sets no longer used by the children they were purchased for, half-eaten cakes and a roughly $200 steak that was brought to customer service in a cooked container of only bones and fat.
It's hard not to laugh. But on Aug. 17, Maryam Nicksolat told Business Insider her 12-year membership was revoked after she tried to return a printer from 2012. Nicksolat claimed the printer, which is exempt from Costco's list of 90-day return technology products, had issues initially but she never got the chance to bring it back. A manager presented Nicksolat with a list of her previous returns and said she'd reached her limit.
After following up with customer service, Costco's senior Vice President of Northeast operations Jeff Long told Nicksolat that Costco was canceling her membership but would refund her the one-year membership fee as well as the printer and ink she had requested to return.
In a letter confirming the revocation, Long wrote, "It is apparent from a review of your membership account that you are not happy with the products you have purchased from Costco, and we are unable to satisfy you as a member."
While Costco's member privileges and conditions do not limit the amount of returns a customer can make, a customer service representative told TODAY Food that returns should be in reason, and it's up to the discretion of individual stores to make a judgment call whether a customer is abusing the already lenient policy.