Planning a wedding? Wholesale clubs can help
HOUSTON Wholesale clubs can help you plan on a budget. They can print your photos, design your flowers, you can even pick up your wedding bands. Whether you shop Sam's or Costco, we found you can expect to save 40 percent off the retail price. They have cakes, rings and flowers; you can even get your pictures printed for a fraction of the retail price. "I think it's a smart consumer," shopper Barbara Cohen said. And at wholesale clubs like Sam's or Costco, it is a bargain compared to the specialty shops. Take for example flowers. At Costco, mixed bouquets are $14.99 and two dozen roses are $16.99. Floral designer Dennis Kutoch is shocked by the price and the quality of flowers at Costco. "They are a bargain, if you want fast flowers, you want a fast hostess present, perfect place to gohe said. Where else can you walk into a house with a $15 bouquet that looks like $50?" And because it's wedding season, the wholesale giant has a floral designer at the Richmond Avenue location that can help you with flowers for your big day or any other event for that matter. "You are getting the flowers at a wholesale price to begin with and we incorporate that into our price," floral designer Roberto Lopez said. Lopez says his floral designs are at least half off the price of your local flower shop. Take for example a bridal bouquet with two dozen roses. The Costco price is $50. The flower shop price is about $150. A large bouquet in a vase is $39.99; retail the price would be about $80. Over at Sam's club, the store has a dozen roses for $11.97 and they can also help design your flowers. A huge arrangement can be found for $116.40. When it comes to photos, don't spend money on the prints at a photo shop. Instead check out Costco photo center. They have hard-bound photo books that start at $39.99. Barbara and Jerome Cohen were surprised at the price for photos on canvas after their family just spent a small fortune. "He paid about $1,000," Jerome Cohen said. Photos on canvas range in price from $34.99 up to $72.99. They also have deals on sheet cakes. At Costco the price for sheet cakes were $17.99 but at Sam's club, the price was more expensive at 20.48, but the store also can design wedding cakes. When it comes to diamonds, you can spend more than $160,000 on one ring at Costco, but most prices on diamonds whether you shop at Costco or Sam's start several hundred dollars. Skip the liquor store for champagne. You can pick up a 1.5 liter for just $6.98 at Sam's. The bottom line, if you shop at the wholesale clubs, be sure to shop and compare the prices between the two. As we mentioned we found the price of a dozen roses cheaper at Costco as well as the price of cake. Keep in mind, you must be a member to shop wholesale, it's usually $40 or $50 to join. Wholesale clubs don't yet sell wedding dresses, but Costco recently did have a traveling wedding gown show at its Richmond location. Depending on how successful the event was, it might happen again.