More on Costco
Memberships are $55 yearly for households, $55 for businesses and $110 for an executive membership, which brings cash-back rewards program and other incentives.
Hours at the Fort Wayne Costco -- and other Costcos as well -- are 10 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Monday-Friday; 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday; and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday.
An exception in that schedule is opening day Oct. 16 in Fort Wayne, when the store will open at 8 a.m.
More information about Costco is available at www.costco.com.
This must be the kind of problem a retailer relishes: More than a week before Fort Wayne's first Costco opens, prospective customers are outside, signing up for membership cards.
Costco isn't the first warehouse-club store in Fort Wayne. A Sam's Club store has been in Fort Wayne for years, and nationally, that's the biggest competitor to Costco. But interest in the new arrival in town is so strong that a few of the 160 workers who staff the Fort Wayne Costco are stationed outside the store off Lima Road from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. each day, signing up new members.
Warehouse Manager Melanie Crysler said Tuesday that new members will be signed up -- at a cost that begins at $55 per year -- through the public opening of the store at 8 a.m. Oct. 16. People won't need membership cards to browse the store, but they will need cards to purchase anything. To help attract customers in the first few days the store is open for business, Costco is stocking some big-ticket specials for the opening.
Don't bother asking for prices, though. Front-end Manager Israel Martinez said Tuesday that prices won't be added to the 4,000 or so different items in stock until early Tuesday, just before the store opens. Competition is the reason for the secrecy, Martinez said. They don't want competitors to get an early read on their prices.
The 4,000 different items stocked at any one time may sound like a lot, but it's many fewer choices than are available even in a typical good-sized grocery store, which might have 30,000 items in stock.
Martinez said that the frequently shifting inventory creates a “treasure hunt” feeling among serious fans of Costco. Thirty to 35 percent of its stock are steady staples that remain constant, but the rest changes frequently.
The Fort Wayne Costco also will include a pharmacy, a food court, a bakery, a meat department, a hearing-aid center and a vision center.