The Average American Costco Shopper May Surprise You

How do you compare to the average Costco shopper? If you plan your trip to Costco on a weekend and shop there every two to three weeks, you're solidly average. But if you think you can pick your average Costco shopper out of a crowd, new data that Numerator calculated for Insider might surprise you.

Even during the pandemic, Costco prospered. According to its annual fiscal year report for 2020, net sales totaled $163 billion, representing a 9 percent increase compared with 2019. The stats tell you what Kris Jenner knows in her soul. "Costco is a passion," the reality star told Cosmopolitan. "Costco is like a massage." Kris Jenner — and other impossibly rich millionaires like her — aren't your run-of-the-mill Costco customers. Nor is the average Costco customer likely to hang out in the surfboard section of the store, like Jenner proclaims to do. At the same time, at least according to Insider, your typical Costco customer isn't exactly scrambling to make ends meet, either. On the contrary, they earn more than $125,000 a year, putting them solidly in the middle-upper class wealth bracket depending on household size (via CNBC).

How much does the average Costco shopper spend per trip?

Want some more deets on Costco's average Jane? As per Insider, your standard shopper is likely to be Asian American, female-bodied, and between the ages of 35 to 44. They'll also probably have tied the knot with a special someone and have at least a four-year degree. Oh, and they're likely to be living in the pacific northwest. 

What are they buying? Chances are they're picking up a rotisserie chicken, according to a recent Mashed survey. But who are we kidding — you knew that already. Rotisserie chicken is Costco's raison d'être. Of course, they'll go to the discount shopping chain for more than just pre-prepared dinner food. According to Insider, the average Costco shopper spends about $114 on an average of nine items per trip. Make no mistake about it — these are the shoppers who know to go straight to the middle of the store for the chain's best deals.

What's the takeaway? Really, whatever you want it to be. But also — if Costco is planning on hiking its membership fees by 8%, as Stifel predicts (via Market Watch), the steeper fees will doubtless not affect their average customer. With an average income totaling $10,000 per month or over, a $130 annual Executive membership is a downright bargain.