Every brand has its devotees, but Costco fanatics are on another level.
When Costco opened its first store in China last month, overwhelming crowds forced the store to be shut down on opening day. A similar situation happened in Iceland in 2017, when search-and-rescue teams were employed to manage the crowds on opening day.
Admittedly, it isn't hard to love the warehouse store that is estimated to have over 90 million card-holding members. Costco offers an exclusive shopping experience for its members, which includes anything you could ever need to live comfortably — and it's all in bulk.
Selling everything from engagement rings to groceries, Costco is the master at giving shoppers the best bang for their buck. Plus, its in-house Kirkland Signature brand drives prices down even more, which further endears the company in the hearts of its shoppers.
But for many Costco frequenters, the store is more than a place to pick up value products.
"I think all of the people who have weird attachments to Costco have a pretty similar story," said Max Ellinger, a Costco loyalist who lives on the West Coast. He loves Costco so much he got a tattoo of the Kirkland Signature logo on his arm.
Ellinger says he frequents Costco about three times a week and even had his birthday party in a Costco food court in 2015.
He's a Gold Star Executive member, a higher tier of membership which is double what a regular Gold Star membership costs at $120 a year. It offers 2% cash back on purchases, as well as special deals on some Costco services.
Ellinger is in good company when it comes to Costco appreciation. There are websites and blogs solely devoted to people talking about the warehouse. One website, Costco Insider, has hundreds of thousands of monthly users. The founder started the website out of a love for Costco almost 10 years ago and as a way to tell people about the deals the store.
Business Insider talked to six Costco lovers and discovered five main reasons that people fall in love with the warehouse store. Some names and surnames have been withheld at members' request to protect their identity.