Anyone who shops at Costco knows the joy that is the $1.50 hot dog soda combo. The food court staple has been $1.50 since its debut in 1985, and Costco has promised that the price will never go higher than that — but it might need to go lower to stay competitive. Sam’s Club is coming for the best hot dog deal crown, as the major discount retailer is offering their own combo for 12 cents less than Costco.
Sam’s Club, which is owned by Walmart, revealed that they were lowering their hot dog combo — which consists of a 1/4 pound frank and a 30-ounce refillable soda — from $1.50 to $1.38.
The move comes in time for the holidays and also as shoppers across the United States are struggling to keep budgets in check despite inflation.
“The members’ dollars are going further at Sam’s Club, too … we’re also making the everyday shopping trip better by lowering the price of the cafe hotdog combo by nearly 10% to $1.38,” said Walmart CEO Doug McMillon to investors during a third quarter earnings call. “Around the world, our teams have this type of mindset.”
Sam’s Club is making a big deal about this hot dog combo price cut, too. The discount chain’s blog post titled “It’s 12 cents. So what?!” outlined how they are continuously looking to cut prices for customers.
“A dime and two pennies might not seem like much and we tend to agree – when it comes to one transaction on one hotdog combo. But there’s a bigger story at play here. This is a signal. It’s indicative of the journey we’re on – to make the Sam’s Club membership the most valuable subscription you have. And in this case, that means working it twelve cents at a time.”
Both stores are likely losing money on their flaming hot dog deals — the meal acts as an incentive for people to choose the store in the first place. And shoppers often also stay for longer and make extra purchases if they stop at the food court.
Both stores offer very similar items in their food court, including pizza, salads, churros, and ice cream. There are a couple of differences, though. Costo offers a hot turkey sandwich, and Sam’s deals out prezels and pizza pretzels.
Sam’s Club also has a final competitive edge over Costco in the wiener wars, as shoppers do not need to be a Sam’s Club member in order to access the food court. Costco used to function similarly, but made their food court members only at the beginning of 2020.
Your move, Costco.