Weenier, weenier… Costco deenier.

Hot dogs. Probably not the healthiest thing to eat. But if you’re feeling poor and want a quick fix, you’re likely heading to your local Costco, am I right?

I was recently having a hot dog with my mom at the local Costco. And not only is it one of my favorite memories of doing groceries as a kid at Costco (Price Club, back in the day), but knowing it’s been a fixture there for the last 27 years helps jog other fond memories – like in high school when we’d grab some before a bonfire and re-roast them or when we’d go for work lunches and order a hot dog and the entire Costco food court menu spending upwards of $10 total.

At a quarter-pound dog served inside a slightly sweet yet simple bun, it doesn’t come with controversy. In 2009, Costco switched from Hebrew National to Kirkland Signature hot dogs causing an uproar including letters to corporate, despite the newer dog being slightly bigger than the old, kosher one.

But, why a $1.50, though? It’s so cheap. And, its been that price forever.

There is a thought that the hot dog acts as a carrot – lead magnet of some sorts. Most people (me, included 99% of the time), don’t just go to Costco, walk around, and don’t buy a bunch of over-bulked items and come out $400 later. The hot dog acts as a “reward sticker”… something for a low price finally at the end of your trip. It creates a habit in essence, which we as humans find utterly satisfying – like Costco didn’t win all my wallet – but they really did.

P.S.  You can also say something about that $4.99 rotisserie chicken in the back of the warehouse. A whole chicken that could feed your family for dinner, or feed you for a week if you’re single. Did Costco just double-bait you?

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