Does Costco Sell Dry Ice? Exploring Costco’s Selection and Alternatives

Dry ice has become an indispensable commodity in various industries, events, and everyday use, with its unique properties making it the go-to solution for an array of applications. From preserving food and shipping perishable items to creating mesmerizing special effects for parties and stage performances, dry ice is truly versatile.

As a result, the demand for dry ice has surged significantly in recent years. With Costco being a popular destination for bulk purchases and catering to diverse consumer needs, it’s natural for consumers to wonder if this wholesale giant offers dry ice as part of its extensive product lineup. 

In this blog post, we’ll delve into whether or not Costco sells dry ice, discuss some of the reasons behind their selection, and present alternative options for those in need of dry ice or other cold storage solutions. We’ll also touch on the importance of dry ice in today’s world and why it has gained such popularity. Join us as we dive into the fascinating world of dry ice and uncover Costco’s connection to it.

What is Dry Ice

Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide (CO2). It is a colorless and odorless substance that is extremely cold, with a temperature of -78.5°C (-109.3°F). Unlike regular ice, dry ice sublimates, meaning it transitions directly from a solid to a gas without passing through a liquid phase. It is produced by compressing and cooling carbon dioxide gas until it liquefies.

The liquid CO2 is then allowed to expand rapidly, causing a drop in temperature and turning it into solid dry ice. The resulting dry ice is usually formed into blocks, pellets, or slices for various applications.

Handling dry ice requires caution due to its extremely cold temperature. It can cause frostbite or cold burns if touched directly with bare skin. It’s crucial to use insulated gloves, goggles, and proper ventilation when working with dry ice to avoid injury and prevent the buildup of carbon dioxide gas. Dry ice is widely used to preserve perishable items like meats, dairy products, and frozen goods, maintaining their freshness during transportation or extended storage.

Many companies use dry ice to ship temperature-sensitive products ensuring that they arrive at their destination in optimal condition. Dry ice is popular for creating fog and other special effects in theatrical performances, concerts, and events, as well as for decorative purposes at parties and celebrations.

Does Costco Sell Dry Ice?

As a prominent warehouse retailer, Costco offers a wide range of products, from groceries and electronics to household items and more. However, after extensive research and reaching out to various Costco locations, it is evident that Costco does not sell dry ice at the majority of its stores. The primary reason behind this is the specialized handling and storage requirements for dry ice.

Due to its extremely low temperature and the need for proper ventilation, storing and handling dry ice can be challenging for retailers like Costco, which focuses on a diverse range of products. Although Costco may not be your go-to source for dry ice, there are alternative solutions and other retailers that cater to this specific need.

Where to Buy Dry Ice

dry ice

Local retailers

  • Common stores that sell dry ice: Many grocery stores, gas stations, and specialty ice suppliers offer dry ice for purchase. Some popular retail chains known to carry dry ice include Walmart, Safeway, Publix, and Kroger. Additionally, smaller local ice companies and suppliers may have dry ice available.
  • Tips for finding local suppliers: To locate nearby dry ice suppliers, use online search engines or directories, such as, which provide a list of businesses selling dry ice in your area. You can also contact local grocery stores or gas stations to inquire about their dry ice availability. Keep in mind that stock levels may vary, and some locations may require advance notice for large purchases.

Online options

  • Popular websites for ordering dry ice: Several online retailers specialize in dry ice sales, including Penguin Dry Ice, Airgas, and Continental Carbonic. These websites allow you to order dry ice in various quantities and forms, like pellets or blocks, depending on your specific needs.
  • Shipping considerations and delivery times: When ordering dry ice online, be aware of the shipping costs and delivery times. Dry ice evaporates quickly, so it’s crucial to choose expedited shipping to ensure that the dry ice arrives in a usable condition. Additionally, make sure someone is available to receive the shipment, as dry ice should not be left unattended.


Why doesn’t Costco sell dry ice in all its stores?

Costco doesn’t sell dry ice in most of their stores because of the challenges related to storing and handling such a product. Dry ice requires proper ventilation and has extremely low temperatures, making it difficult for a retailer like Costco, which focuses on a diverse range of products, to accommodate.

Where can I buy dry ice if not from Costco?

You can purchase dry ice from local grocery stores, gas stations, and specialty ice suppliers. Some popular retail chains known to carry dry ice include Walmart, Safeway, Publix, and Kroger. You can also order dry ice online from retailers like Penguin Dry Ice, Airgas, and Continental Carbonic.

How can I find local dry ice suppliers?

To find local dry ice suppliers, use online search engines or directories, such as Alternatively, you can contact local grocery stores or gas stations to inquire about their dry ice availability.

How should I handle and store dry ice?

When handling dry ice, always use insulated gloves or a cloth to avoid direct contact with your skin. Store dry ice in a well-ventilated area and never in an airtight container, as the pressure buildup can cause the container to explode.

To Sum Up

In this blog post, we have explored the availability of dry ice at Costco, shedding light on their product offerings and the reasons behind their selection. It’s essential for consumers to weigh their options and choose the most suitable solution for their specific requirements. We have also highlighted alternative sources for purchasing dry ice, both locally and online, as well as DIY solutions that can serve as a substitute in certain situations.

As you venture into the world of dry ice, remember to prioritize safety and follow proper handling guidelines. We hope this post has been informative and helpful. Feel free to share your own experiences, tips, and suggestions for finding and using dry ice in the comments section below. Together, we can continue to explore and discover the best ways to utilize this versatile and valuable resource.

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