man speaking about Costco memberships

Juan Llauro/Shutterstock @realjimlanahan/TikTok (Licensed)

‘That’s exactly why I signed up online’: Long-time Costco shopper says workers insisted on upselling membership when he tried to open a new account

‘The only day I hate more than tax day is the day my Costco membership expires.’


Rebekah Harding


A Costco customer says workers wouldn’t let it go when they tried to upsell him on his membership in a now-viral TikTok.

In the video posted by producer and life coach Jim Lanahan (@realjimlanahan) on Mar. 23, he says that he went to Costco to get a new Basic Gold card after the membership he shared with another person ended.

@realjimlanahan @costco should do better #costco #costcofinds #costcotiktok #costcobuys #costcomusthaves #costcomembership #palmdesert #palmdesertcalifornia #coachella #desertliving #desertlife #desert #customer #customerservice #csr #palmsprings #palmspringscalifonia #palmspringslife #driverslicense #photoid #id ♬ original sound – ✨Jim Lanahan✨

In the clip, Lanahan says he told the worker that he wasn’t technically a new member and wanted to keep his Basic Gold membership instead of opting for their Executive membership. But even after several attempts to dodge the worker’s expensive membership suggestion, they just wouldn’t let up.

“So I’m highly annoyed, but I kept calm,” he says. “In order for me to pay the difference between the Gold and the Executive, I’d need to spend $3,000 annually here.”

Lanahan says that the worker looked at him like he was “disgusting.”

“She was like, ‘Maybe you want to talk to someone else because you aren’t listening to me.’ And I was like, ‘No, I’m hearing every word you’re saying,’” he continues.

He says that another worker approached him and asked if they could help but once again launched into a long-winded sales pitch for the Executive membership.

“I said, ‘I’m going to stop being nice. I appreciate all the training you’ve gotten on the upsell, but I am not going to sign up for anything today except the Basic Gold,” he says in the clip.

He continues that she said she would open the Basic Gold membership but kept insisting that he download an app and provide a credit card to renew annually. Lanahan refused and was still able to get his new membership card.

“So that’s the story of Costco berating an existing customer for an upsell on a membership and then treating me horribly throughout the process,” he says at the end of the clip. “Thanks so much, Costco.”

@realjimlanahan @costco should do better #costco #costcofinds #costcotiktok #costcobuys #costcomusthaves #costcomembership #palmdesert #palmdesertcalifornia #coachella #desertliving #desertlife #desert #customer #customerservice #csr #palmsprings #palmspringscalifonia #palmspringslife #driverslicense #photoid #id ♬ original sound – ✨Jim Lanahan✨

The video has reached over 1.1 million views as of Mar. 27, with commenters criticizing the workers’ insistence on upselling even after Lanahan made his preference clear.

“Call them and complain! That is horrible customer service,” one user suggested.

“You handled this way more classier than I would have. I love your restraint,” another said.

Others shared their Costco membership horror stories.

“I went in to try to cancel the executive membership, and they literally told me no and said to try it again for another year before I decide,” a commenter wrote.

“The only day I hate more than tax day is the day my Costco membership expires and I get that unexpected cost at the register,” another said.

The Daily Dot reached out to Lanahan via email form and to Costco via media request form.

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