All Costco Photo Centers Will Close Permanently This Month

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costco photo department in-store sign

Costco is discontinuing one of its popular in-store services! 😱

The rumors are true – Costco will be closing all of its photo centers companywide effective February 14, 2021. Photo center employees were informed of this news on Monday, and we’re hearing that they will be reassigned to other areas of the warehouse where they’re currently employed. Thankfully, it doesn’t look like this decision will result in anyone losing their job.

A number of Costco photo labs were closed in March and April of 2020 due to low demand. Despite people taking more photos than ever, the need to have them printed seems to be on a steady decline. There’s no word yet on how Costco plans to repurpose the floor space currently occupied by its photo centers, which are normally located near the club’s optical centers.


holding up before and after costco photo repair

In addition to being a convenient place for members to pick up some inexpensive prints, Costco’s photo center was loved for its high-quality holiday cards, affordable ink refills, $5.99 passport photos, and photo repair services.

Costco Photo Center Closing

The good news is that some of Costco’s photo services will continue to be available for members online – prints, photo gifts, and greeting cards included.

What will you miss about Costco’s in-store photo center?


Take advantage of Costco’s awesome photo restoration service while you can!

Join The Discussion

Comments 60

  1. Deb

    You can probably find photo restoration services in your town, but where I live, they charge a fortune. Consider checking out photo restoration on Fiverr. I’ve had a couple of photos that I found amongst my late parents’ things restored for as little as $5-10. One of the photos, once restored, showed me in the background, as a baby (I wasn’t visible in the photo as more than a dark blob before)!

    • Brent and Erin Cramer

      Come try us and if you need to ship or mail us the image we can turn around and do the same. RR custom Color lab. We will give it our best effort to give you exactly what you are looking for. Spokane, WA.

  2. DealGetterRN

    Noooooo we LOVE their ink refills!!! Any insight anyone on a GOOD affordable ink refill service/method?!?

    • animity

      Go to the Epsom Ecotank

    • tmi0604

      I have loved the HP Instant Ink feature on select HP printers. If you print less than 50 pages per month, it is only $2.99/mo. (there are different plans depending on your usage) They ship you ink refills for free when you get low, and they give you postage-paid envelopes to recycle old cartridges. It has saved me tons over the years. Their printers aren’t the absolute best (a little glitchy now & then), but I just bough a 2nd one for $39 (came with 6 months free instant ink on their largest plan – they have offers all the time if you buy certain printers). Good luck!

    • Mary Wilson

      HP Instant Ink – requires an HP Printer – if you print 15 or less per month it’s free. Otherwise, The pricing starts @ $2.99 for your 1st 50 prints per month. Rollover prints – cannot exceed a total of 150 in my plan – they upped the limit 🙂 Here’s a link: http://try.hpinstantink.com/tCbg2

      • Val

        Thanks for the tip. Just checked out the plans — 15 or less pages is now .99/mo. (not free 😞).>

    • Paul in NJ

      When Costco shut their photo & ink-refill services down during the pandemic, I bought a 20-pack of virgin ink cartridges on Amazon for under $20. They work just fine. Costco was getting, what, two or three bucks per cartridge. I haven’t looked back.

    • Pat

      If you have an HP Printer, I use their monthly plan. Small monthly fee, they monitor your ink and mail cartridges before you run out.

  3. Chris

    That’s sad to hear, no one really comes close to the price and quality you get at their photo center.

  4. Heather

    I never even knew Costco had a photo service.. our Local store in IN never had one that I know of… would of been nice though … for sure!!

  5. Yazzay

    Nooooooo!! I’m devastated!! I’ve been a devout Costco photo center customer for years! 😭

    • natd22

      Me too! I am SO sad!

      • Sharon Weisman Breger

        Me too!!! I am so upset!

  6. LittleBird

    I just got a bunch of photos printed in December! I usually get our Christmas cards there, too. I’ll miss them!!!

    • Kelly Clark

      No worries! You can still get everything done online. I had to reread it to understand! Just the in store photo centers are closing😉

      • Rach

        Not everything just some things… that is what the article states.

  7. JoAnna

    Hopefully regular photos, cards…..can stick around with their online service 🙂 Thankfully no one is losing their job!!

  8. Ron Gage

    Well, you can always shop local (or even shop small) and find a small service provider – like mine.

  9. Melissa

    Their luster prints are awesome! I hope they are available online.

    • Kelly Clark

      Still available online! That’s not changing!

  10. Lexy

    THNAKS for the fair warning ⚠️ I need to go take my passport photo ASAP

  11. molly

    Loved their holiday cards, but their prints were always too dark (no matter how much we researched and fiddled with settings). Only printed photos there in a pinch. Hope we can still order photo cards online!

  12. Dale Rogerson

    This totally blows. I love having my images blown up and used as art. sigh.

  13. Margaux

    I didn’t know Costco…took passport photos?! I have been going to AAA and paying DOUBLE! Will have to stop by the counter and have a few more taken before they close.

    • Lisa

      I believe certain AAA offices do the Passport Photos for free (again, certain ones) as long as you are a member.

      • Deb

        Around here, you can go to the public library and get your passport photos (not free) and apply for a passport at the same time.

      • queen62

        Not free for all. AAA memberships vary. Only free to plus members.

  14. acgold

    They were great for passport, visa and ID photos. Fast, cheap, easy.

  15. Evelyn

    I’ve been ordering my Christmas cards online from Costco for years. I’d imagine that Costco will continue the popular services online (as referenced in the post). With many people uploading their photos, I wouldn’t be surprised if they offer the prints to be shipped similar to Shutterfly along with other photo items. They probably feel they’ll get better return on premium floor space with something else.

  16. aml

    No! I just started converting VHS tapes to DVDS, too.

    • Sara

      Sam’s Club still does it.

    • Stephanie

      Try FOREVER! Excellent quality and service for digitalization!

  17. David

    HUGE disappointment. Ours is always very busy. I get my printer ink cartridges refilled there and will miss that service.

  18. SamShops

    So sad! I loved how affordable reprints and enlargements were 😪

  19. Debbie

    Our photo center has been closed for months, maybe longer.

  20. Stacy Bowden

    The FotoShoppenc.com is a small business in North Carolina that does things like Costco has done and more. I highly recommend

  21. nldaadmin

    Does Costco photo currently convert VHS to DVD ? If so, I’d better make tracks to get a few VHS tapes over there!

  22. Cynthia

    I just got passport photos there last week and they beat EVERYONE in the area on price. Sorry to see it close. If anyone knows any other place to get passport photos at this price, please shout out!

  23. Gigi

    Mine closed a couple of years ago and I really have missed the convenience!

  24. Robin

    Nooooo I do all my business prints through Costco – they have best prices and quality – they are officially ending that portion of my business too 🙁

  25. TThomas

    there cvs store and check out Shutterfly ( on line).

  26. Susan Foltz

    What a huge mistake to close this amazing service. It serves no purpose to close it. I’m very upset.

  27. Tia

    Where is the news source for this?

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Hi Tia! It seems that locations have posted this update at their photo centers, as show in the image above. Hoping that helps!

  28. val

    crushing sad decision. heartbreaking actually. they are my no fail go to. pretty soon we will never need to leave our couch apparently.

  29. Vince

    While the online products may still be available, it’s so great to be able to take a photo, upload it today and get a poster print tomorrow. It takes more than a week to get one delivered online. I’m going to Costco today to pick-up photos… and probably purchase other things that I had no intention of purchasing. That’s what photo centers are — a little like Costco chicken — a bit of a loss leader to get people into the store.

    I think right now, there are fewer photos being taken and fewer people going to the stores, but as vaccinations ramp up and we get closer to a state of normalacy, we’ll see things move back.

  30. Vince

    I just chatted with Costco. This is an unsubstantiated rumor.

    • Vince

      Disregard. Costco Customer Service is not aware of the change.

  31. Lori

    A friend had a Costco employee confirm this.

  32. Vince

    Just received an email from Costco confirming it now too. (Seems like they didn’t let their customer service people know of the change).

  33. Iris Lopez

    This is so sad, I love their one hour services. I truly believe they’re making a huge mistake by eliminating this service inside their stores.

  34. Kath

    I have used Costco for years but started to use Persnickity Prints for mail service when I did not have a local Costco. Love Persnickity, great quality, archival photo prints, super customer service and fast. Prints are out the door usually in a day or less. They have actually called me to discuss an issue with a print order to ensure they are doing what I want, ie questioning the type of paper I selected to suggest a different paper would make a better print. There was a bit of a learning curve when you want to order a mix of sizes but I climbed that hill. Huge choice in print sizes. You can order print credits when they are on sale and with credits a 12×12 photo print is $1.75, that seems to be their cheapest price point for sizes, others not quite as cheap but good deals over all. Never ordered their books, so can’t comment on price and quality and no ink service.

    • Jennifer (Hip Sidekick)

      That you for that awesome info, Kath! We sure appreciate and found it really helpful!

  35. Laura

    Will they still offer online/ship to home services?

  36. Joy

    I bet they are going to use the space for curb side pick up.

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