Explainer: Everything you need to know about New Zealand's new Costco store

New Zealand's first Costco store is finally due to open after several months of waiting.

The west Auckland megastore will open on September 28 after staffing shortages and COVID-19 held up the highly anticipated opening.

Thousands of Kiwis have already bought memberships with many more expected to in the coming days.

Here's everything you need to know about Costco:

Where can I collect my membership card?

Membership cards can be collected from Costco's temporary office at 15 Kakano Rd Westgate, Auckland. They can also be bought online. 

Memberships will only begin once the store opens so Kiwis who sign up early won't be missing out. 

How do I sign up?

You can sign up online at Costco's membership registration page or in-store.

What types of payment does Costco accept?

Costco accepts cash, EFTPOS, Mastercard Credit or Mastercard Debit Cards.

Can I bring guests?

People with a membership can bring two guests into the store but the guests cannot buy anything without a membership. Children are allowed into the store with cardholders and aren't counted as guests.

Do I have to show my membership card at the entrance?

Yes, Costco only allows members to shop at their stores. The card has a picture and can only be used by the owner.

What is the difference between Business and Gold Star memberships?

Costco is primarily a wholesaler. Business is the basic membership and costs $55 per year.

This entitles you to make two separate transactions at the register, one for business (to produce a tax receipt) and one for your personal shopping.

Gold Star, which costs $60 per year, means other people can join and shop at wholesale prices. Gold Star members are only able to make one individual transaction per shop. 

Both membership types include a free household card.

Can I get a refund for my membership if I am unhappy?

Membership can be refunded in full at any time for any reason.