Three weeks ago, NTUC FairPrice opened its Warehouse Club which is Singapore’s first membership-based retail warehouse for fresh & frozen food, groceries, household products and general merchandise. The mega warehouse occupies Levels 2 & 3 of the FairPrice Hub and spans over 80,000 square feet with an impressive product range of more than 4,000 items. It is modelled after Costco, the largest membership warehouse club chain in the US which also has outlets in UK, Canada, Australia, South Korea, Japan and more.
The warehouse is open to all but to purchase something, you’d first need to sign up for an annual membership just like how Costco works. The membership fee is S$35 per year for NTUC Union members and S$50 per year for non-Union members. There is a membership counter at the Level 2 entrance of the warehouse where you can sign up on the spot.
Over the weekend, I travelled to the West just to check out the Warehouse Club to see what was in store.
The FairPrice Hub is just located directly opposite Joo Koon MRT Station. Besides the Warehouse Club, the building also houses other tenants (mostly F&B outlets) like Foodfare, Subway, Burger King, Popeyes, KFC, Thai Express, House of Seafood and F&B kiosks like Jollibean & Gong Cha. The rest (including non-food related ones) have yet to open for business.
One unique feature about the Warehouse Club is that the products come in larger than normal sizes such as this Heinz Mayonnaise 3KG bucket. The same brand of mayo could cost anywhere from S$3.95 & up for a 420g bottle which means this super-sized bucket would give us a cost saving of up to 35%.
There is also a huge range of dried herbs and spices that are available in big bottles which will probably last you for a longer time if you use a lot of spices in your cooking.
And this is Costco’s most popular housebrand, Kirkland that does food products and non-food products too.
If you’re planning for a party or stocking up for festivities, this is a good place to start with because all the snacks come in humongous sizes that you don’t see in other supermarkets or minimarts.
Chips and crackers come in multi-packs too that offer greater value for money. And if you’re hosting a party, it’s just so easy to hand everyone an individual pack of chips rather than having them to share.
Just like a supermarket, the warehouse has chillers for frozen products too. Here, we can see bulk packs of ice creams and other sweet treats.
Milk and juices come in multi-packs of 2, 3 or 4 cartons. For example, for the Meiji brand of fresh milk, it is normally priced at S$5.95 per carton. Over here, it’s S$9.95 for two which means we save about 16%.
What caught my eye was this chiller of different sausages in bulk packets priced from S$9.25 & up. Pretty worth it.
But not everything was cheaper here. This Johnsonville brand of bratwurst sausages cost S$19.80 for a twin pack but I bought them at S$7.90 per pack from Foodie Market Place @ Tiong Bahru which means over here, it is 25% more expensive. Wow.
Now that Carrefour no longer exists in Singapore, you can still purchase their housebrand range of products here.
Here also carries frozen packet soups from Fassler Gourmet, my favourite salmon factory. These soups that come in triple packs are a few cents cheaper than buying them individually from Fassler directly.
I also explored the non-food sections which were pretty much normal like the same in FairPrice hypermarkets. Didn’t really see anything exciting that’s worth mentioning.
After a tour of the entire warehouse, I didn’t feel compelled to sign up for a membership as I wasn’t wowed by the low percentage of savings by buying the brands or products I want in bulk. If you are an avid shopper who knows your numbers really well, you’d agree that many of the products here aren’t exactly that cheap too. Plus the location is really out of the way for people living in the opposite ends of Singapore so I don’t see myself coming back often to make purchases especially when I don’t drive. And even if I do, I wouldn’t be buying loads as it’s just myself and my husband in our household.
Having said that, I think this Warehouse Club concept still appeals to many families who will likely benefit from the savings in the long run.
Reasons to get the membership:
1. To buy groceries and household consumables in bulk for large families
2. To buy ingredients in bulk for home-based food business
3. To stock up essential ingredients for your F&B outlets
4. If you live in the West (and near Joo Koon) and intend to visit Warehouse Club regularly for grocery & food shopping for convenience sake
5. To purchase Kirkland’s (Costco’s housebrand) brand of products and of other brands not available in other supermarkets
6. To buy products in larger portion sizes so it minimises the hassle and helps save time to replenish them on a regular basis when they run out
7. If you host parties and meals at home very often
8. If you snack a lot, lol. An ex-colleague of mine used to buy big packets of roasted almonds and M&Ms from Costco when she travels to US so she could munch on them in the office.
9. If you prefer to shop in a less crowded & less chaotic environment on the weekend
If you haven’t been to Warehouse Club, why not go check it out and see if you might spot any good buys?
1 Joo Koon Circle
Levels 2 & 3, FairPrice Hub
Tel: 6552 2722
10.00am to 9.00pm (Mon-Fri)
9.00am to 9.30pm (Sat-Sun)
Barely weeks after the Warehouse Club was launched, Big Box Megastore at Jurong East also opened for business. A brand new lifestyle retail mall that is a one stop shop for almost everything and anything. Click on the link to read more.