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Costco Shopper Says He Never Shows Receipt at Exit—Here's Why

He says he has a workaround to avoid presenting the physical copy.

If you shop at a wholesale store like Costco, chances are you've been asked to show your receipt while walking out with your purchases. Retailers have these policies in place to ensure shoppers pay for what's in their cart—and for the most part, it's easy enough to flash your receipt and be on your way. But one Costco shopper says he always avoids showing his receipt when leaving the warehouse. Read on to find out why, and what he does instead.

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A Costco shopper doesn't show receipts unless he has to.


You will have to pry my sales receipt out from my cold unalived hands. #LossPrevention #Costco #Receipt #OCR #Scanner #infosec #cybersecurity #socialengineering #kerneldump @@CryptoKnight

♬ original sound – KernelDump


In a video posted last week, TikTok user @KernelDump discussed the policy of showing receipts at stores and why he doesn't like handing over his physical copy.

The TikToker—whose bio states that he creates content about network, systems, cloud, and security engineering—explains that he is "that guy" for employees because he won't show his receipts.

"I get it, they're trying to do their loss prevention," he said, noting that he likes to scan and store his receipts when he gets home. "I hate when I go to one of these supermarkets or one of these clubs and they take a Sharpie and they just write all over my receipt, because it messes up my ability to scan it."

At other major retailers' stores, @KernelDump says he simply tells employees "no, thank you" when they ask for his receipt at the exit. However, this tactic doesn't work at Costco.

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Costco's website outlines their "standard practice" of verifying receipts.

Shopping cart in the parking lot of Costco.
Jonathan Weiss / Shutterstock

The TikToker points to Costco's membership terms and conditions, which are spelled out online.

"It is standard practice at all our warehouse locations to verify purchase receipts when customers exit our buildings," Costco's website reads. "We do this to double-check that the items purchased have been correctly processed by our cashiers. It's our most effective method of maintaining accuracy in inventory control, and it's also a good way to ensure that our members have been charged properly for their purchases."

Discussing these rules, @KernelDump said it "eats me up inside because I still don't want to do it, on principle."

To combat this, he said he found a workaround.

RELATED: Costco's New Policy Is Cracking Down on Membership Sharing.

He shows them a digital copy.


The TikToker explained that he uses an app called Scanner Pro, which allows him to present a digital version of his receipt on his smartphone.

"What I'll do now is, as soon as I finish checking out at Costco, I'll lay out my receipt, and I'll use Scanner Pro and scan the whole thing, and then I'll rip up the receipt, and I'll just throw it in the trash," he explains. "When I'm walking out, yeah, I'll show them the scanned copy of my receipt."

@KernelDump adds that he allows the employee to look at the "totally valid receipt," which shows his transaction. If he gets pushback, he contends that employees should look up his purchase in Costco's system.

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Some TikTokers argued about how efficient this practice really is.

A close up of a shopping cart inside a Costco Warehouse Store
Shutterstock / a katz

In the comment section, fellow shoppers supported @KernelDump's decision not to show his receipt, noting that sometimes it's a hassle to wait in line to leave the store. But others argued that this extra effort might not be worth it.

"Your issue with Costco is they mark on the receipt, but you already scanned it….so whats the issue with them checking/marking the receipt after?" one TikToker commented.

Several others said that showing your receipt can actually be beneficial for shoppers, too, as checkers may notice an error. "Costco has caught some accidental duplicate charges for me," a comment reads.

Multiple commenters insisted that if you're a Costco member, you should simply adhere to the rules. "I could see if like we were forced to shop at Costco but [they're] Costco rules if you don't follow them don't shop at Costco," one wrote.

In response, however, @KernelDump commented to say that he doesn't shop at Costco anymore. In a follow-up video, the TikToker elaborated on his stance, stating that the process is really just a "spot check" and "not actually thorough enough to be considered security at all."

Abby Reinhard
Abby Reinhard is a Senior Editor at Best Life, covering daily news and keeping readers up to date on the latest style advice, travel destinations, and Hollywood happenings. Read more
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