Costco is right to set new gasoline rule in NJ. But here’s how to get around it (Opinion)
Starting July 5, Costco will be requiring people who buy their cheaper gas to become members in order to continue doing so. Apparently, New Jersey is only one of two states where they were forced to sell their gas to everyone based on a policy that has been in place since 2004.
But upon further review, they couldn't find a law prohibiting them from requiring memberships. They even reached out to Sal Risalvato, executive director of the New Jersey Gasoline, C-Store, and Automotive Association, who told New Jersey 101.5 that Costco has figured out a way around that rule.
Risalvato said that the state Division of Consumer Affairs has also had difficulty finding the law and has called him looking for help to identify it. Good luck with that.
Personally, I agree with Costco here. They're in the business of selling memberships. In order to do that they need to provide in-demand items cheaper than anywhere else, such as gas.
If you need a membership to buy a lawn mower at Costco why shouldn't the same requirement apply to the purchase of gasoline? Why should Costco's members who pay for the privilege have to wait in long crowded lines with others who have not paid for membership?
I talked about this for over two hours on New Jersey 101.5, which you can hear on demand, and my first caller Trish talked about she avoids membership by using Costco gift cards. Others talked about how they use their Costco credit card and along with saving money at the pump, get a yearly rebate check.
I polled my audience and here's what they think as well as some more opinion.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
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Red flags for someone who claims to be from New Jersey