These Are The Only States Without Costco Locations

Costco has come a long way since the opening of its first-ever warehouse in Seattle, Washington, in 1983. As of March 2024, the wholesaler has brought its bulk-sized goods and $1.50 hot dog and soda combos to an impressive 876 locations across 14 countries worldwide. A majority of those stores — 604 to be exact — are in the United States and Puerto Rico, with California being home to the largest number of warehouses with 137 (though, believe it or not, none of them are the biggest Costco in the world). Yet, even with nearly two-thirds of the world's Costcos operating in the U.S. and its territories, there are three states where the chain has absolutely no presence at all.

Hawaii and Alaska might be your first guesses as to which states are Costco-less, but the noncontiguous parts of the country actually have 13 warehouses between them. So, which states have the unfortunate honor of being completely void of the big box retailer? Wyoming, West Virginia, and Rhode Island.

Up until recently, this club also included a fourth member: Maine. However, as of November 17, 2023, the Pine Tree State officially got itself off of the list with the opening of its first-ever Costco store in the town of Scarborough. Will Wyoming, West Virginia, and Rhode Island ever be able to do the same?

This state might be next in line to get its first Costco

Naturally, you're probably wondering why Costco hasn't broken ground in Wyoming, West Virginia, or Rhode Island. It's not because these states have something against wholesale clubs; Wyoming and West Virginia are home to Sam's Club warehouses, while Rhode Island has several BJ's Wholesale Club stores throughout the state. Rather, the lower population densities of these states may play a major factor, as it ultimately doesn't promise as much sales and profit. Yet, despite this, one state might be close to breaking free from Costco's exile.

In April 2023, Cranston, Rhode Island mayor Ken Hopkins revealed to WPRI that the corporation was looking to bring the first Costco warehouse to the city. In January 2024, however, it was announced that Costco had actually pulled its permit applications the previous August, effectively putting Costco's Rhode Island debut at a standstill.

In the time since, several other towns have offered space for the big box retailer to move in, though there does not appear to have been any development on Costco's end to move forward with the project. Until there is, Rhode Islanders, as well as residents of West Virginia and Wyoming, can get an online membership and shop the cult-favorite grocer through its website. You can also shop online without a membership, though there is a 5% surcharge for non-members.