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American Costco Shoppers Are Jealous of the Canadian Food Court—Here's Why

Hint: cheese curds and gravy are involved.

Oh, Canada! Americans have long coveted your hockey skills and universal health care. Now, there's another object of our envy: your Costco food courts.

U.S. shoppers have grown loyal to the warehouse chain's plethora of food court offerings, from sandwiches to pizza to desserts. Although Costco's most iconic combo—the $1.50 hot dog and soda—was recently one-upped by Sam's Club cutting the price of its own frank-and-fizz deal to $1.38, the low-cost wholesaler is still much admired by its members.

That is, until folks saw what Costco food courts are serving up in the Great White North.

Popular fan account @costcobuys took a trip down Maple Lane to show followers what they've been missing here in the states.

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In addition to hot dogs, the Canadian menu offers chicken strips, several ice cream choices and, yes, poutine—the très populaire French-Canadian dish of french fries topped with cheese curds and brown gravy.

The reactions online bring new meaning to the term American exceptionalism. "Costco hates us in the USA," wrote one disgruntled user. Another pondered, "Why does every country have a better food court than the ones in the US?"

It's a question that apparently even puzzles some of Costco's U.S.-based employees. One self-described staffer wrote, "I've worked for Costco for 33 yrs and feel like the U.S. Costcos are the ugly unwanted stepchild of the company when compared to our international locations. It's a total head scratcher."

The new cross-border rivalry comes at a time of increasing criticism about Costco's much-ballyhooed food courts, with many claiming the pizza, churros, hot dogs, and chicken bakes are totally overrated.

Some commenters begged for the U.S. locations to incorporate the chicken strips and poutine, while others called for a change in the "same old" food court menu.

One follower even suggested that the wholesaler start an "international month where they serve or carry items from Costco's around the world."

That would be something: if you thought the Canadian food court fare was exotic, just imagine what the food at Costco locations in Iceland or China is like!

Olivia Bria
Olivia has a bachelor’s degree in communications and political science from the University of Connecticut. She is a foodie, traveler, journalist, and celebrity interviewer. Read more about Olivia