Costco Wholesale Corp. has restricted gasoline sales at its New Jersey locations to Costco members only, as gas prices in the state are hovering at about $5 per gallon.
On July 5, a gallon of regular unleaded gas at a Costco station in New Jersey cost $4.55, roughly 25 cents less than the statewide average. The policy was announced by the company in June.
Some customers were surprised at Costco’s new policy.
Costco tried to limit gas sales to members back in 2004. However, New Jersey officials ordered the company to keep its stations open to all citizens as the state deemed that the membership requirement violated its laws on fuel sales.
Summer PricingCostco’s decision comes as gas prices across the country have slightly eased since June. On July 6, the national average gas price was $4.779 per gallon, according to AAA. This is down from the $5.016 per gallon peak on June 14.
However, gas prices might rise again in the coming weeks with increased summer demand.
“July is typically the heaviest month for demand as more Americans hit the road, so this trend of easing prices could be short-lived,” Andrew Gross, AAA spokesperson, said in a statement.
“What that magical number is I don't know, because we are in unprecedented times in terms of having this build up of demand post-COVID at the same time because of stimulus and higher disposable income," Essner said.