15 Things You Didn’t Know About Sam’s Club Slideshow

This Walmart-owned warehouse club gives Costco and BJ’s a run for their money
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Photo Modified: Flickr / Dean Hochman / CC BY 4.0

15 Things You Didn’t Know About Sam’s Club

15 Things You Didn’t Know About Sam’s Club

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Americans love their Walmart and their big-box warehouse stores, and Sam’s Club, which is owned and operated by Walmart and named after its founder, Sam Walton, combines the best of both worlds. But even if you shop at your local Sam’s Club every week, we bet that there are still some things that you don’t know about this mega-chain.

There was Briefly a “Mas Club” in Houston

There was Briefly a “Mas Club” in Houston

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Geared toward the Hispanic population, Mas Club (mas meaning "more" in Spanish) opened in Houston in August 2009, with a separate membership from Sam’s Club. It closed in February 2014.

You Don’t Need a Membership to Access the Café and Pharmacy

You Don’t Need a Membership to Access the Café and Pharmacy
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If you want to buy a snack or pick up prescription drugs and don’t have a membership, nobody will stop you; selling drugs to members only is prohibited by federal law, as is the case with liquor and gasoline in some states.

They Don’t Accept Visa or American Express

They Don’t Accept Visa or American Express

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Don’t try to pay with Visa or American Express; there are plenty of accepted payment methods (including SNAP and Sam’s Club Credit), but due to high processing fees, those two cards aren’t accepted.

Non-Members Can Shop There with a One-Day Pass

Non-Members Can Shop There With a One-Day Pass

Photo Modified: Flickr / Dean HochmanCC BY 4.0

If you really need to shop at Sam’s Club but don’t have a membership, you can print out a one-day pass here. Just be prepared to pay 10 percent more than members do.

You Can Rent a Car from Them

You Can Rent a Car from Them
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You can book flights, cruises, hotels, and even rental cars through Sam’s Club Travel.

You Can Request Items

You Can Request Items
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Is there something that they don’t stock that you wish they did? Just send them a note and they’ll be in touch about your request.

Some Stores Will Let You Park Your RV in Their Lot Overnight

Some Stores Will Let You Park Your RV in Their Lot Overnight

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If you’re looking for a place to park your RV for a night, Sam’s Club might let you park yours there if local zoning restrictions allow it.

The Largest Sam's Club is in Pineville, North Carolina

The Largest Sam's Club is in Pineville, North Carolina
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Formerly an Incredible Universe electronics superstore, the largest store is 185,000 square feet. 

They’ll Revoke Your Membership if You Curse at an Associate

They’ll Revoke Your Membership If You Curse at an Associate

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Sam’s Club “reserves the right to accept, refuse, or revoke Membership without cause,” according to their website, and your membership can be cancelled for everything from writing bad checks to shoplifting to using profanity toward an employee to “questionable returns.”

Every Food Product Gets a Blind Taste Test at Corporate Headquarters

Every Food Product Gets a Blind Taste Test at Corporate Headquarters

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A team of 65 to 100 professional tasters at the “Sensory Lab” inside the company’s Bentonville, Ark. headquarters tastes four different food items every day. The team rates each product according to criteria like texture and sweetness and then reports back to the corporate chef. About 1,700 items are tasted each year, and only 15 percent of items tasted make it to the club.

There Are Only Three States With No Sam’s Clubs

There Are Only Three States With No Sam’s Clubs
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Oregon and Vermont have no Sam’s Clubs, and the only Rhode Island location closed in February 2016. There are no Washington, D.C., locations, either.

A Houston ‘Sam’s Business Center’ Only Lasted a Year and a Half

A Houston ‘Sam’s Business Center’ Only Lasted a Year and a Half
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An attempt to build on the success of Costco’s Business Centers (where office supplies and the like are sold) fizzled out, as the first location, in Houston, opened in August 2008 and closed in January 2010.

You Can Use a Mobile App to Check Out

You Can Use a Mobile App to Check Out
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In 2016, an app was introduced that allows shoppers at all U.S. locations to scan items while they shop and skip the checkout line entirely; purchases are automatically charged to a credit card on file. It can be downloaded here.

Items Can Be Shipped to Your Nearest Store for Free

Items Can Be Shipped to Your Nearest Store for Free
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If you don’t want to roam around the store looking for specific items, you can order them online and have them shipped to your nearest store for free. Then when you’re notified, you can just drive over and pick them up — no line, no fuss. We wonder if they’ll ever offer home-delivery service, like their competition.

You Can Find Plenty of Deals on Groupon

You Can Find Plenty of Deals on Groupon
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If you’re not a member yet, you can save a ton of money by signing up through Groupon.