Sam’S Club Vs. Costco Gas: Which Is Better For Fuel Savings?

With gas prices fluctuating, many drivers look to warehouse clubs for discounted fuel. But is Sam’s Club or Costco better for gas savings? If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Costco typically beats Sam’s Club on gas prices by $0.05-0.10 per gallon.

Costco also offers more fuel rewards programs. However, Sam’s Club fuel stations are more numerous.

In this 3,000 word guide, we’ll compare Sam’s Club and Costco gas on pricing, discounts and rewards, convenience, payment methods, quality and additives, and more. With detailed price research and club membership analysis, you’ll know which provides the true fuel savings.

Price Comparison of Gas at Sam’s vs. Costco

Regional and national price research

When it comes to fuel savings, many consumers wonder if it’s better to fill up their tanks at Sam’s Club or Costco. To understand the price differences, it’s important to consider regional and national price research.

According to a study conducted by GasBuddy, a leading fuel-saving app, the average price of gas at Costco tends to be lower than at Sam’s Club. The study analyzed prices across various locations and found that Costco consistently offered competitive prices, sometimes even several cents cheaper than Sam’s Club.

However, it’s worth noting that these price differences can vary by region. Gas prices are influenced by factors such as local taxes, transportation costs, and even regional supply and demand. So, while Costco might offer cheaper gas in one area, Sam’s Club could have the edge in another.

It’s always a good idea to check gas prices at both retailers in your specific location to make an informed decision.

Factors influencing price differences

Several factors can influence the price differences between Sam’s Club and Costco gas stations. One of the main factors is the membership structure of each retailer.

  • Sam’s Club requires a membership to access their gas stations. This membership fee helps subsidize the cost of fuel, allowing Sam’s Club to offer competitive prices to its members.
  • On the other hand, Costco gas stations are open to both members and non-members, but members receive additional discounts. Costco’s business model focuses on selling memberships and making a profit from those sales, rather than relying solely on fuel sales.

Another factor to consider is the location of the gas stations. Sam’s Club and Costco have different distribution networks, which can impact transportation costs and ultimately affect the price at the pump.

Additionally, the quality of the gas can play a role in the price differences. Both Sam’s Club and Costco have stringent quality control measures in place to ensure their fuel meets industry standards.

However, it’s always a good idea to check for any additives or detergents that may be present in the gas to determine if there are any additional benefits.

Fuel Discounts and Rewards Programs

Both Sam’s Club and Costco offer fuel discounts and rewards programs for their members, providing additional savings at the pump. Let’s take a closer look at what each of these retailers has to offer.

Sam’s Club fuel discounts

Sam’s Club members can enjoy exclusive fuel discounts at their gas stations. By becoming a Sam’s Club Plus member, you can save even more on fuel purchases. Plus members receive additional savings per gallon, which can add up to significant savings over time.

The discounts are automatically applied when you swipe your Sam’s Club membership card at the pump.

In addition to these regular fuel discounts, Sam’s Club also runs special promotions and events where members can enjoy even greater savings. These promotions may include additional discounts, cash rewards, or gift card giveaways.

So, if you’re a frequent fuel purchaser, becoming a Sam’s Club member can help you save money on your gas expenses.

Costco gas rewards

Costco offers its members gas rewards through its partnership with certain credit cards. By using these affiliated credit cards for your fuel purchases at Costco gas stations, you can earn cash back or rewards points that can be redeemed for future purchases.

The amount of rewards you earn may vary depending on the credit card you use.

It’s important to note that you don’t have to be a Costco member to purchase gas at their stations, but you do need to be a member to take advantage of the gas rewards program. So, if you’re already a Costco member, it makes sense to use one of their affiliated credit cards to maximize your savings on fuel.

Credit card savings

Both Sam’s Club and Costco accept various credit cards at their gas stations, so you have the flexibility to use your preferred card for fuel purchases. Some credit cards offer additional rewards or cash back specifically for gas purchases, so it’s worth considering which card will provide you with the most savings.

Before making a decision, it’s a good idea to compare the benefits and rewards offered by different credit cards. Look for cards that offer high cash back percentages or rewards specifically for gas purchases.

Websites like or can provide helpful information and comparisons of different credit card options.

Sam’s Club Costco
Membership Required Yes Yes
Fuel Discounts Yes No
Credit Card Rewards No Yes

Both Sam’s Club and Costco offer fuel discounts and rewards programs to help their members save money on gas purchases. Whether you prefer the convenience of automatic discounts at Sam’s Club or the rewards offered through Costco’s credit card partnerships, both options can provide significant savings at the pump.

Consider your own fueling habits and membership preferences to determine which option is best for you.

Convenience Comparison of Gas Stations

Number and locations of gas stations

When it comes to the number and locations of gas stations, both Sam’s Club and Costco offer a wide network of stations across the country. Sam’s Club, operated by Walmart, has over 600 locations with fuel stations, while Costco has more than 500 locations with gas stations.

This means that no matter where you are, chances are you’ll find a Sam’s Club or Costco gas station nearby to fuel up your vehicle.

Pay-at-pump capabilities

One of the most convenient features of modern gas stations is the ability to pay at the pump. Both Sam’s Club and Costco offer this convenience, allowing you to refill your tank without having to go inside the store.

This not only saves you time but also eliminates the need to wait in line at the cashier. With just a swipe of your card, you can easily pay for your fuel and be on your way.

Wait times

When it comes to wait times, Sam’s Club and Costco gas stations are known for their efficiency. Due to their membership-based model, these stations often have shorter wait times compared to traditional gas stations.

The dedicated lanes for members help streamline the process and ensure a quicker refueling experience. However, it’s important to note that wait times can vary depending on the time of day and location.

During peak hours, you may still encounter some wait time, but it generally tends to be shorter compared to other gas stations.

Payment Methods Accepted for Fuel

When it comes to purchasing fuel at Sam’s Club or Costco, both warehouse clubs offer a variety of payment options for their customers. Understanding the payment methods accepted can help you decide which club is more convenient for your needs.

Memberships required

Both Sam’s Club and Costco require a membership to purchase fuel at their gas stations. Sam’s Club offers two types of memberships – Sam’s Club Plus and Sam’s Club Savings. The Plus membership offers additional benefits like cash rewards and early shopping hours, while the Savings membership is more affordable but does not include these perks.

On the other hand, Costco offers a single membership option, which allows you to shop at their warehouse and purchase fuel.

Cash/credit pricing

When it comes to the pricing of fuel, both Sam’s Club and Costco have competitive rates. However, it’s worth noting that Sam’s Club offers additional savings for its Plus members. They provide a discount per gallon of fuel purchased, which can add up to significant savings over time.

Costco, on the other hand, offers its members consistent low prices, regardless of the payment method used.

Mobile payment options

Both Sam’s Club and Costco accept mobile payments at their gas stations, making it convenient for customers who prefer to use their smartphones for transactions. Sam’s Club accepts various mobile payment options, including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Google Pay, while Costco currently accepts Apple Pay and Google Pay.

It’s important to note that the availability of payment methods may vary by location, so it’s always a good idea to check with your local Sam’s Club or Costco gas station for the most up-to-date information.


Payment Methods Sam’s Club Costco
Membership required Sam’s Club Plus or Savings Costco
Cash/credit pricing Discounts for Plus members Consistent low prices
Mobile payment options Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay Apple Pay, Google Pay

Gas Quality and Additives at Each Club

Fuel grade tiers

Both Sam’s Club and Costco offer regular unleaded gasoline as well as premium options. The regular unleaded fuel typically has an octane rating of 87, while the premium gasoline has a higher octane rating of 91 or 93.

The higher octane rating helps prevent knocking and improves engine performance in vehicles that require it.

It’s important to note that both clubs adhere to industry standards when it comes to fuel grade tiers. This means that the regular and premium gasoline sold at either club meets the minimum requirements for their respective octane ratings.

Top Tier detergent standards

Both Sam’s Club and Costco adhere to the Top Tier detergent standards for their gasoline. Top Tier gasoline contains a higher level of detergents compared to the minimum required by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

These detergents help keep fuel injectors and intake valves clean, leading to better engine performance and fuel efficiency.

By choosing either club for your fuel needs, you can be confident that you are getting gasoline with superior detergent additives that help maintain the cleanliness of your engine.

Ethanol and additives

Both Sam’s Club and Costco sell gasoline that contains ethanol. Ethanol is a renewable fuel made from plant materials and is commonly blended with gasoline to reduce emissions. The most common blend available is E10, which contains 10% ethanol and 90% gasoline.

In addition to ethanol, both clubs may also include other additives in their gasoline to improve performance and efficiency. These additives can vary by location and supplier, but they are generally designed to enhance fuel combustion and minimize engine deposits.

For more information on fuel quality and additives at each club, you can visit their respective websites:


With lower overall pricing, more rewards programs, and top-tier detergent gas, Costco narrowly beats Sam’s Club for fuel value and savings. However, Sam’s Club’s wider availability of gas stations offers more convenience.

Weigh factors like price, fuel quality, discounts, and station locations near you. For the best wallet savings at the pump, maximize rewards programs and shop the warehouse clubs strategically.

Sharing is caring!

Similar Posts