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Costco Is Getting Rid Of This Specific Member Perk

The warehouse is taking another step forward in the journey back to "normal."

One by one, pandemic-era rules have slowly become things of the past not only at Costco but also at other popular grocery stores. Now, the warehouse chain is taking another step forward in the journey back to "normal."

Rumors first began swirling last month that one long-standing rule from the pandemic would finally end in July, thanks to a post by Reddit user @Downtown-Dance8132. They shared a photograph of a sign with the official Costco logo posted to a corkboard. It said regular store hours would return, and special operating hours would no longer be offered. (For more information on what not to pick up on your next trip to the warehouse, here are the Costco Foods You Should Always Avoid, According to Nutritionists.)

Costco has officially confirmed this rumor.

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According to the Updates and Coronavirus Response page on Costco's website, "senior operating hours will end and Costco warehouses will resume regular operating hours" on July 26.

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The perk was set up in March 2020 for specific members.

Costco shoppers
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Special operating hours lasted more than a year, and they were only available to those members over 60 years old, those with disabilities, and those who were immunocompromised. They were established in order to allow specific members to bypass the huge lines and crowds that were forming amid demand for toilet paper and other quarantine essentials.

At first, the special operating hours were only available twice a week. Costco later extended them to three times a week, and then eventually to Monday through Friday in May 2020, according to USA Today.

Special operating hours were supposed to end in July 2020.

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It took an entire year for the special operating hours at Costco to officially come to an end. Last July, the warehouse announced that they would be reduced to two days a week. After COVID-19 cases started to spike, Costco ended up leaving them in place "until further notice."

Related: Costco Now Has a Mini Version of This Beloved Bakery Item

Another pandemic rule that's quietly disappearing? Social distancing.

Lindsey Nicholson/Education Images/Universal Images Group/ Getty Images

Samples and indoor seating are back at the warehouse, and masks aren't required for members who are vaccinated. But there's another pandemic safety rule that's quietly disappearing from Costco stores. Reddit user @YYCDavid recently posted a picture of the floor at their local Costco in Canada—and it was noticeably lacking social distancing stickers. There's no official word on whether or not this change is making its way south to the U.S. just yet.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the month when special shopping hours began. They began in March 2020, not July 2020.

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Amanda McDonald
Amanda has a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University and a bachelor's degree in digital journalism from Loyola University Chicago. Read more about Amanda