Costco Pays Employees Double What Other Companies Do

I’m a big fan of Costco and in the past I’ve written to argue about the merits of Costco membership and  to point out that Costco prices are far better than their competitors.

A recent article over at CNNMoney compares the average wages of Costco employees to workers at Wendy’s and Wal-Mart.  They showed that typical employees holding similar positions would earn very different rates from one store to the other.

The Costco employee earns $22.80 an hour, while the Wal-Mart employee earns $9.40 and the Wendy’s worker just $7.35.

Since the Costco worker earns more than twice what the other two earn, he can also afford health benefits and even 401(k) contributions.  Medical insurance and retirement savings are important benefits that give workers piece of mind and add to employee satisfaction.

While most companies focus solely on the bottom line and keep labor costs as low as possible, Costco chooses to pay their employees a fair wage.

“That’s the reason why I’ve been here for so long,” says Costco employee Cesar Martinez. “The company gives you a decent wage and treats you with respect and takes care of you. That’s why we all give 100%.”

Happy employees are productive employees so it’s no surprise that Costco’s policy of treating workers with respect has paid off.  Sales have grown an average of 13 percent annually since 2009, and profits have risen 15 percent.  The stock (COST) has more than doubled since 2009.

Costco’s policies are in stark contrast to other companies like McDonald’s who recently made a tone-deaf effort to help their employees create a budget that would let them live on their meager earnings.  Their utterly absurd sample budget caused quite an uproar when it was noticed it included completely unrealistic monthly expenses and left off “luxuries” such as food.

Perhaps if more companies paid their employees as well as Costco the middle class wouldn’t be suffering so much.

The following two tabs change content below.
Mike is a freelance writer and blogger who specializes in finance and parenting topics. He is a dedicated husband and father of three who is obsessed with creating multiple streams of income and building wealth so he can achieve true financial freedom for his family. Like what you're reading? Subscribe to our free RSS feed and follow us on Twitter.

Latest posts by Mike Collins (see all)


  1. says

    Love Costco. I bought a suitcase there two years ago that recently broke. Went out there last night and they exchanged it for a new one, no questions asked.

    I think a lot of the reason they have such great customer service is that they pay their employees better and keep the top talent.


  2. says

    I had a friend who worked there over the summer ~11 years ago that made $10 an hour pulling carts. It was awesome pay at the time, plus you got a free workout and tan! I think they really take care of their employees there and value long term retention.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge