Costco Book Return Policy: Ultimate Guide


While probably not the first place you’d shop to purchase your next book, Costco does stock a range of titles mainly for children with a number of cooking books for adults also in stock on their website.

If you’ve purchased a book from Costco but aren’t happy with it and want to make a return, then it’s essential to get up to speed with Costco’s return policy so you don’t miss any return deadline.

To help you there, we’ve looked at the return window, how to make a return, whether you can return books you’ve read, and much more.

Let’s take a look…

What is Costco’s Book Return Policy? The Short Answer

In short, you can return books to Costco at any time after purchase as part of its 100% guarantee policy which lets you return items for an exchange or full refund.

You can return books if:

  • It was a mistake order
  • Unwanted gift
  • Defective (e.g. pages missing or ripped)
  • Duplicate orders
  • Costco sent the wrong book
  • You find it unsuitable

Almost any reason will do.

Here is a simple way to check the return policy for individual items on Costco’s website.

  1. Go to
  2. Find the listing/item you want to purchase or already have purchased
  3. Click the item
  4. Click the shipping & returns tab (see below)

5. This will then show you the policy. As above, the 100% satisfaction guarantee promise is applied to books so you can return them at any time:

Can You Return Books You’ve already Read to Costco?

Technically nothing is stopping you from reading a book and taking it back to Costco for a full refund or exchange as their 100% guarantee policy is extremely flexible and permits you to return items at any time.

However, we’d advise against using the policy like this as repeated use of the policy will likely lead to your account being suspended if it’s clear you’re using Costco like a library.

We’d recommend only using the return policy when you have a genuine need for a return. This will ensure your Costco account isn’t flagged for misuse.

How to Return Books to Costco

If you want a refund super quick with no questions asked, then simply take your book back to any of Costco’s warehouses.

You can do this even if you ordered the book online.

There are over 2000 Costco’s throughout the US so you should have no issue finding one.

If you’d rather not attend a Costco warehouse then they do offer a mail-in return option which you can start on or using the app.

Unfortunately, you can’t return books purchased in-store using this process but for orders made online, you can do.

To initiate the mail-in return process do this:

  1. Log into your Costco account
  2. Find the Orders and Returns section
  3. Select your book
  4. Pick the returns option and complete the next steps
  5. You will be able to print off the USPS pre-paid return label
  6. Place the label on your item and leave it at your local USPS drop-off point

Can You Return Books to Costco For Free?


Yes, the USPS label is pre-paid so there are no return postage fees.

Costco does not charge a restocking fee on any of its items like some stores and they even refund the original postage and handling fees if you paid postage when ordering the goods.

Do You Need a Receipt to Return Books to Costco?

The great thing about Costco is that every item you purchase is tracked with your membership card so you shouldn’t ever need a receipt.

If you’ve ordered online (where you don’t always need a membership), you will have still been emailed an invoice upon purchase that you can rely on as proof if you return the book in-store.

Failing that, we’d advise checking your bank or credit card statements to identify the purchase that way.

How Does Costco’s Book Return Policy Compare to the Competition?

We have pulled up the policies of some of the other stores in the marketplace to see what their book returns policies look like.

Here is what we found:

StoreReturn Window
Target90 days
Walmart 90 days
Amazon30 days
CostcoReturn any time

Final Thoughts

Nothing can really beat Costco’s policy which allows book returns at any time.

We’ve even heard stories of people returning fish that have been in their freezers for years. Yup – kind of crazy!

However, this does not give you carte blanche to treat Costco like a library and we would advise only returning books when you have a genuine need to; such as if it’s an unwanted gift or mistaken order.

Unfortunately, Costco doesn’t have the best range of books on sale but they do offer a free and simple return process on the ones they do sell.

About the author

Oliver graduated from law school in 2008 and has practiced exclusively in the field of civil litigation for the last 10 years. He has a wealth of experience and expertise in litigation involving large financial losses and a special interest in consumer law. He has achieved numerous 7 figure settlements and has been involved in multi-billion dollar class-action consumer lawsuits against companies such as the Volkswagen Group. Away from the law, he is a consumer information and personal finance writer, having been featured in key publications such as Yahoo Finance, GO Banking Rates, NewsBreak, MEL Magazine, and many more.

-Chief Editor and Founder

Leave a Comment