Is Walmart the Same as Sam's Club

What Makes Walmart and Sam’s Club Unique?

Is Walmart the same as Sam’s Club? Have you ever questioned whether Walmart and Sam’s Club are shopping as siblings or more like strangers? All right, let’s buckle up for an exciting shopping tour of these retail giants.

Is Walmart the Same as Sam's Club

Just think of Walmart as the nice guy with shops on every corner, that is open 24 hours a day and sells just a little bit of everything.

On the contrary, Sam’s Club is reminiscent of a private, membership club, famous for good deals when you shop in bulk and receive some special benefits.

However, are they alike or are they very different?

Let’s move to the details and discover whether Walmart and Sam’s Club are merely different features of the same retail shop or if each one brings a unique style to the party.

Is Walmart the Same as Sam’s Club?

Indeed, Sam’s Club belongs to the Walmart family. The two of them are members of the Walton family.

Walmart is a global retail chain of stores whereas Sam’s Club is a membership-based warehouse format that provides discounts on products.

Walmart was established in 1962 by Sam Walton, whereas in 1983, he also created Sam’s Club. Therefore, Sam’s Club has always been a Walmart.

So, both Walmart and Sam’s Club offer diverse products including foods and electronics at lower prices, and only members of the latter can purchase their items.

In 2023, Walmart is not only the owner of its regular stores such as Walmart Neighborhood Market and Walmart.Com but also several other online stores.

Beyond the common names such as Sam’s Club and Vudu, they own a group of others that include ModCloth,, Asda, Flipkart, Bonobos, and many more.

All these twenty brands belong to Walmart. The Walton family, the founders of Walmart, continues to own both Walmart and Sam’s Club.

Although these organizations operate independently, they often collaborate and pool resources when it is appropriate to do so.

Therefore, there’s much more to Walmart than the big store that you see everywhere.

Can You Use Your Sam’s Club Membership at Walmart?

Is Walmart the Same as Sam's Club

Your Sam’s Club membership is only good at Sam’s Club and on their website,

Typically, you need a membership to shop there, except for a 24-hour Guest Membership that lets you shop without an annual Club or Plus Membership.

Walmart can offer low prices because it’s enormous and sells a lot, allowing them to buy products in bulk. They’ve also invested heavily in technology to make operations more efficient.

Walmart is a huge company, making over 640 billion U.S. dollars in revenue, and it’s the world’s largest company based on the number of employees, with around 2.3 million worldwide.

Walmart competes with companies like Costco, Amazon, Rakuten, Target, and Sears Holdings Corporation.

Over the past 15 years, Sam’s Club has been changing its approach because its stores haven’t been doing as well.

They had layoffs in 2010 and 2014, shutting down all Sam’s Club Canada locations before 2010.

In 2018, they closed 63 warehouse locations in the U.S. And it seems no new Sam’s Club locations have opened in the U.S. for over a decade.

Sam’s Club is not its own independent company; it’s a part of Walmart Inc., which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Interestingly, Sam’s Club doesn’t have a policy against hiring former Walmart employees, whether they quit or were let go.

The Differences Between Walmart & Sam’s Club

Walmart and Sam’s Club may share a parent company, but they provide different shopping experiences:

1. Walmart’s Widespread Presence

Walmart is the biggest retail brand globally, with thousands of stores worldwide, while Sam’s Club has around 600 stores in four countries.

If you’re looking for convenience and accessibility, Walmart is the clear choice.

2. Store Hours Favor Walmart

Most Sam’s Club locations are open from 10 AM to 8 PM, whereas Walmart typically stays open longer, from 6 AM to 11 PM.

In general, Walmart offers more extended operating hours.

3. Pricing Differences

According to, Sam’s Club is often more economical.

Sam’s Club is popular for bulk groceries and household items, while Walmart offers a broader range, including clothing and electronics.

4. Membership Requirement for Sam’s Club

Sam’s Club is a members-only store, requiring a yearly fee starting at $45. Without a membership, you can’t even enter.

However, members enjoy everyday savings, making the membership worthwhile. Walmart, though not members-only, offers memberships like Walmart Plus for extra benefits at a cost.

5. Distinct Discount Approaches

Sam’s Club provides everyday savings and an Instant Savings Program for members.

Walmart, on the other hand, uses traditional methods like coupons and frequent clearance sales to offer discounted prices, including sporadic “rollback” events where certain items see temporary price reductions.

Why is Walmart More Popular?

Is Walmart the Same as Sam's Club

Walmart has consistently performed better than Sam’s Club, despite being pricier.

One reason could be that Sam’s Club’s main rival isn’t Walmart; it’s Costco, which is the most popular members-only wholesaler globally.

People seeking a members-only wholesale experience often choose Costco for its widespread locations, organic choices, and locally sourced products.

Sam’s Club faces a tough sell among Walmart shoppers because it demands a membership fee.

Stores like this tend to do well in wealthier communities, but Sam’s Club is mostly in states with lower average incomes.

So, even though Walmart is more expensive, it attracts a broader range of shoppers, while Sam’s Club faces stiff competition from the likes of Costco.

While Walmart and Sam’s Club are part of the same family, they’re like siblings with different personalities.

Walmart is the big brother, found everywhere, open long hours, and offering a wide range of items.

Sam’s Club, on the other hand, is the members-only sibling, a bit more exclusive, with a focus on bulk deals.

Walmart’s success comes from its massive size, allowing it to buy in bulk and invest in smart technology.

So, while they share a parent company and some similarities, these two siblings cater to different shopping tastes.

Whether you prefer the convenience of Walmart or the exclusive deals at Sam’s Club depends on what kind of shopping adventure you’re looking for.

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