COSTCO Japan Online Shopping Service

If you don’t have a car, dislike shopping in a crowd or live outside Hiroshima city center, COSTCO Japan offers online shopping!

COSTCO currently has 26 warehouses across Japan and there are items in some stores which are not available, sold-out, or temporarily missing in others which makes member access to an online store more appealing. The COSTCO online shop is bilingual and offers free, quick shipping to anywhere across Japan. When I trialed the service, the products I ordered arrived within 2 days which was fantastic!

Our takkyubin delivery driver, however, looked less than pleased realizing that he will now be regularly asked to carry heavy COSTCO boxes up our narrow road. I hope he brings someone to help if we buy a sofa or larger items from the online store 😉

How to Use the Online Store

The first step is to create an account to use the online store. If you are a costco member, it is an easy process to create an online account using your existing Costco membership number. If you have a lapsed membership or are not yet a member, you can also sign-up for a membership on this page.

Once logged in, you can check on your membership settings, then shop and collect items into your cart. Once finished, check all of the items in your cart and notice that 10% tax is often included, or will be clearly added. Shipping is free even for large appliances and furniture.

When finished shopping, you can choose your own, or a different shipping address for gift deliveries, and then add your credit card details. Using the same system as shopping at a Costco warehouse, only Mastercard credit cards are accepted for online shopping.

Easy Access to Dry Goods

As a COSTCO shopper who often can’t find favorite items when they disappear or move to a new area of the warehouse, I find the online store a lot easier to navigate. Although the online shop does not have any of the bakery items, fresh fruit, vegetables, seafood, meat or any other frozen, chilled or fresh items. It does, however, offer greater access to dry-goods, electronics, and other non-perishable products.

There is a good-sized section to shop for the Kirkland COSTCO Own Brand, What’s New and customers can also use the online store to Pre-order party food platters and cakes to be picked up at a local warehouse.

Search Function Limitations

The search function still needs improvement as a search in English or Japanese for Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten-Free, Halal, or allergy-free does not currently produce any results. If searching by brand or product title, shoppers are able to find soy or almond milk, beans, nuts, juices and other items that are vegan and vegetarian. Also, if you search Gluten-Free, nothing appears, however, if you find the Skippy Peanut Butter listing it clearly states that it is gluten-free. As it is a new system, I hope the search function will improve and more products become available over time.

The Hot Buys section listing discounted items is also worth a look as many items offer significant savings.

COSTCO as Equal-Opportunity Japan Employer

There are plans to open 50 more stores across Japan in the next ten years, it seems that the Costco model is working well in the Japanese market.

There are over 9,500 employees working at COSTCO Japan and the company has a good reputation for equal pay and equal access to promotions and career opportunities. The company has a 50/50 gender equality policy and has won awards in Japan for promoting working women and supporting working mothers in Japan. The online shop also offers access to their recruitment pages in both English and Japanese for new graduates as well as mid-career hires if you are looking for part-time (20+ hours/week) or full-time work (40+ hours/week).


Costco first opened next to the Carp baseball stadium in Hiroshima city in 2013 and has become part of Hiroshima city’s culture for businesses as well as residents. It’s great to learn that COSTCO has a clear CSR mission engaging with the community and includes collaborating with charities such as Second Harvest to decrease food waste and has been transparent as an equal opportunity employer in Japan.

Costco is transparent about the environmentally-friendly policies it uses in operations and it would be great to see more of Costco’s environmentally-products available at the online store. For example, the Residential Solar Panel and Battery systems are not online, only available at the warehouse, but residential solar systems are sold on their US website.

One benefit of shopping bulk at Costco is that only reusable bags or the reuse of boxes are available at the check-out. It would be great to see further improvements to decreasing the amount of plastic packaging waste sold by increasing product lines which have more easily recyclable containers such as paper, metal, and glass instead of plastic. Costco has been clear about their efforts to improve their packaging to include more recycled materials. Adding reusable trays, plates, cups, straws, lids, and utensils to the food court as well as creating reusable containers for the in-house sold baked goods would significantly reduce plastic waste at the Hiroshima store.

Plastic waste is a problem for Japan in general, and I live in hope that international chains such as Costco can have a positive effect on the retail industry by implementing these changes. For example, it’s great to see biodegradable (compostable) food containers sold at the online store which I hope will soon be adopted in eateries across Japan. Seeing more compostable package options like this alongside more reusables at the Costco food-courts would be a welcome change.

Customer Feedback

Customer feedback is an important aspect of the COSTCO model, so if you have a suggestion or concern, make sure you fill in a customer feedback form at the warehouse or via the customer service portal online.

I hope this information has been useful. How do you find shopping at Costco in Hiroshima? Feel free to leave your comments in the section below. 


Writing about Hiroshima for over twenty years. Co-founded GetHiroshima in 1999 and founded the sustainability-focused InboundAmbassador business in 2019. Monthly CleanUp and Seeking Sustainability event organizer, guide workshop facilitator, online content creator and tourism destination consultant. Passionate about promoting solutions in Japan for people and the planet.

10 thoughts on “COSTCO Japan Online Shopping Service

  • August 30, 2020 at 6:25 pm

    I am very exited and want buy from this online Costco but am still worried about the shipping cost, I use to to work for a business and they only delivered for free if we bought more then 30000yen, is it included meaning the prices are more ? How many items can I buy for it to be free ? Thanks

    • August 31, 2020 at 11:30 am

      Actually many items have free shipping or very low shipping costs in my experience, but as you can switch the shop interface to english, it’s easy to see how much once you collect things in your cart- enjoy!

      • May 7, 2021 at 11:52 am

        Hello jjwalsh,
        Good article about Costco Online. When it comes to shipping there is usually a minimum order amount for “free shipping” ¥5,000. Recently they have a promotion that cut that in half to ¥2,500 minimum order. I also notice the prices are more too. For example Kirkland Organic Tortilla Chips are usually about ¥768 per 1.13 kg or 2.5 lb bag in the warehouse but online they cost about ¥1,138 per the same bag. Amazon Japan is even worse they charge about ¥1,568 per bag. So they do mark up the products and do charge for shipping (with built in minimums) at least in my online experience. I am still happy to have the online store now. The reason I stumbled on your website is that I was looking for Ken Terio not sure if that is spelled right it is from Katakana (President of Costco Japan). I just purchased over ¥33,000 of product, and they sent me Nabisco Ritz Crackers with a best eat by date 2021/06 and it already May. I just went to my local warehouset this last February and bought the same box and those didn’t expire until 2021/07. So I brought this issue up through their contact form, and they said they don’t exchange and I would have to return through Kuronekko Delivery Company (at their expense) but wait one to two months for a refund on my credit card after it arrived at the depot. I find this ridiculous, and I am an executive member! What do you think? Is this fair? Have a great day. If anyone has an email address for Ken and his correct spelling of his name send it my way. Have a great day. I do love Costco most of the time. But, this issue doesn’t sit right with me and I have a feeling if I was dealing with Costco in the US this wouldn’t happen.

        • May 18, 2021 at 1:53 pm

          hi Jim,
          thanks for commenting and adding that information about shipping discounts, good to know. I don’t have any connection with the management, sorry but I have had responses to questions I have asked through the website (although hit and miss) and actually had better luck contacting the US branch about an issue in Japan if that helps. I am not sure sell by dates is a dealbreaker for me, but one of the greatest benefits of buying from Costco is the refund policy if anything doesn’t measure up to the quality it should be. I’ve taken food and products back for a full refund many times.
          Hope that helps,

      • September 1, 2021 at 8:15 pm

        Since being in Hiroshima 30+ years.
        I remember outsideR before get Hiroshima 🥸

        • September 2, 2021 at 10:29 am

          The good ole days 😉

  • December 22, 2020 at 7:40 am

    I have a Costco account in the US and I would like to order some items for my brother who lives in Tokyo. Would that be possible?

    • May 18, 2021 at 1:59 pm

      that is a very good question patsy,
      I would contact a costco customer service in the US about that since you have your card there (and they are much more responsive via customer relations).

  • February 23, 2021 at 9:18 am

    This is great to know!
    But I do wonder…if you dont have a Mastercard, what methods of payment are accepted? Convenience store payment?

    • May 18, 2021 at 1:55 pm

      they have an ATM at the registers if you don’t have an approved credit card 🙂 cash still is king in Japan


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