Costco Wholesale Club will now offer three senior shopping hours a week amid the coronavirus pandemic and is allowing “those with physical impairments” to also participate.
After originally starting the special hours March 24 as a twice-weekly event for members 60 and up on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Costco quietly added Wednesdays as the third day.
The retailer edited its March 21 Facebook post announcing the special temporary senior hours Friday to note the change and updated its website Saturday about the special operating hours.
“On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, Costco warehouses will open from 8 to 9 a.m. for members ages 60 and older, and for those with physical impairments,” Costco’s website notes.
Store pharmacies also will be open earlier but food courts will maintain normal hours, according to the website. The hours apply to all stores except for the company's Business Center locations, which will remain open during regular hours.
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In responding to comments on its Facebook page, Costco said only members meeting the criteria "will be allowed to enter the warehouse and guests will not be admitted.”
Starting March 30, Costco is temporarily cutting weekday hours and stores will close at 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and gas stations will close at 7 p.m.
Costco’s website update on Saturday notes other changes such as a limited food court menu and new return restrictions. Warehouses are not accepting returns of toilet paper, bottled water, sanitizing wipes, paper towels, rice and disinfecting spray.
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Acknowledging that older adults and persons with underlying health conditions are more susceptible to COVID-19, a growing number of stores have been dedicating time or opening earlier for senior shoppers and other at-risk groups.
Because of panic shopping, which has left store shelves empty in many places across the country, at-risk groups including seniors have had difficulty getting supplies.