‘I actually returned a rotisserie chicken’: Viewers share wildest Costco returns

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Costco’s generous return policy is the stuff of internet legend. Remember the viral video about a woman who returned a whole couch to the big-box retailer? After a popular TikTok creator recently had a little fun with the policy in a new video, viewers are sharing their wildest return stories.

Comedian Brian Herzog (@herzy1000)’s comedy skit about the Costco return policy has 6.5 million views and 366,000 likes.

“I saw a video about someone who returned a couch without a receipt, after having it for years. The comment section said that Costco will return anything,” Herzog captioned the video. “I made this video cause I thought it was funny and needed to make something that day. I’ve only been to a Costco one time, so it’s possible this is entirely made up.”

In the skit, a “customer” (Herzog in a costume) returns a nonstick pan because “it’s sticky now.” Another person returns a 7-year-old couch without a receipt just because they don’t like it anymore. Life imitates art. The only thing that gives the video’s faux-Costco worker pause: a customer returning a day-old rotisserie chicken. But the refund still happens.

@herzy1000 Costco’s Strong Return Policy – I saw a video about someone who returned a couch without a receipt, after having it for years. The comment section said that Costco will return anything. I made this video cause I thought it was funny and needed to make something that day. I’ve only been to a Costco one time, so it’s possible this is entirely made up. 😬 – #comedy #Costco #relatable #funny #funnyvideos #shopping #costcofinds #costcotiktok #costcoreturns ♬ original sound – Herzy1000

Viewers rushed to the comments section, including Costco workers testifying that such scenarios really happen.

“I’ve been a refund cashier at Costco for 25 years and this is true,” one person commented.

“Costco employee here,” another person wrote. “The worst is when someone returns a bunch of unopened food like meat [and says], ‘we bought too much,’ and we have to throw it away.”

“Former employee here: we took back a sectional sofa with bed bugs. And a pile of scrap wood claimed to be a playground set,” one viewer commented.

“Worked at costco, a lady returned an empty wine bottle because it gave her a headache,” another comment read.

“I worked at Costco—someone brought back a plant they killed months later,” a viewer chimed in.

More unbelievable return stories came in from folks, like a person who wrote, “a lady returned a Christmas tree at Costco… after Christmas. it had decorations left [over].”

“I returned a open bag of coffee beans cuz I didnt like it. I only used beans for 1 brew, I had my receipt but was SO nervous,” one viewer remembered.

“We have Canadians that come down to Montana for the summer buy kayaks for the summer then return them before they head back,” someone commented.

Another person wrote, “seen someone return a mattress after 7 years and get a refund, they really do take anything back.”

“Just returned a grill we had for 4.5 years and was VERY used. No questions asked,” a comment read.

“I returned a package of peppers after eating 2 out of three. I wanted one third of my money back cause one was rotten. They gave me all of it back,” one commenter offered.

“I was returning a shirt because it didn’t fit. The lady ahead of me was returning a steak (cooked, in a [plastic] container) because she said they were tough. Full refund. They told her to take the steak,” another viewer wrote.

“My dad returned something he bought 20 years earlier when it broke. They offered him a swap for a like product or a refund. He just swapped it!” a commenter said.

And then a viewer claimed that the craziest part of Herzog’s video actually happened to them, more or less: “I actually returned a rotisserie chicken because it was all raw inside.”

A few viewers urged caution, writing that people who abuse the return policy may find their memberships canceled.

Costco’s website provides details about its “Risk-Free 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.” According to the company, “We guarantee your satisfaction on every product we sell, and will refund your purchase price.” 

The chain reserves a few exceptions to the policy, according to the Costco website, including electronics (which have a 90-day return window), diamonds (which have additional return requirements), cigarettes, alcohol, and products like batteries and tires.

When it comes to returning food, the short answer is: You can probably do that. According to personal finance outlet The Ascent, Costco will take back food with a clear quality issue or if the customer didn’t like the taste, though there should be a “reasonable portion” left. 

And it’s true that you don’t need a receipt. According to U.S. News & World Report, Costco keeps track of purchases due to its membership model. A retail consultant told the outlet that the “membership system offsets losses from returns processing and encourages good relations between the store and consumers, which is a win for everyone.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Herzog and Costco via email.

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