Sam's Club raising annual membership fee for first time in 9 years
Consumers feeling the pinch from soaring inflation will soon have to pay more in annual fees for a Sam's Club membership.
Starting Oct. 17, the annual membership fee will be $50 for Club members and $110 for Plus members, up from $45 and $100, respectively. The move marks the first hike for its Club membership in nine years and the first Plus membership increase since its introduction in 1999.
"We are mindful of the financial pressure on wallets right now. So, this year’s renewal is on us," Sam's Club CEO Kath McLay said in a notice to customers. "We’re giving back $5 in Sam’s Cash to Club members and $10 in Sam’s Cash to Plus members shortly after renewal."
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In the second quarter of 2022, Sam’s Club reported $21.9 billion in net sales, including a 25% growth in e-commerce. Comparable sales increased 17.5% overall and 9.5% excluding fuel.
The number of comparable transactions grew 9.8% while the average ticket fell 0.2%. Membership income increased 8.9% as its total memberships hit an all-time high.
Shoppers stock up on merchandise at a Sam's Club store on January 12, 2018 in Streamwood, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Walmart operates a total of approximately 600 Sam's Club locations.
Sam's Club rival Costco last raised its annual membership fee in 2017. Costco charges $60 per year for its basic "Gold Star" membership and $120 for its Gold Star Executive membership. Analysts have said the company, which typically increases its fee every 5-1/2 years, could delay it this time as consumers cut spending.
Costco did not immediately return FOX Business' request for comment.
Reuters contributed to this report.