Guns at Walmart: The Good and the Bad

Arma Borealis has a post up on buying a gun at Walmart. He’s from Alaska, and I’ve heard that Walmart even sells pistols up in Alaskan stores. He complains about being escorted out with the gun. That’s something even Cabelas does. I’m guessing it’s an insurance issue more than a shoplifting issue. He also mentions Walmart’s deal with MAIG, which is why I’ll never buy a gun there.

15 thoughts on “Guns at Walmart: The Good and the Bad”

  1. Not only should you not buy a gun a Walmart because of the MAIG deal, you shouldn’t buy anything. Hard to avoid in a smaller place but you should try. I complained to Walmart back when they did it and basically got blown off. Surprise.

  2. “He also mentions Walmart’s deal with MAIG, which is why I’ll never buy a gun there.”

    I quit buying anything gun and hunting related from Walmart.
    I also contacted them about the MAIG deal and heard nothing back.

  3. Thanks for the link; had it not been for them carrying the 10/22 CRR (compact version) I would have purchased elsewhere. Shipping to Alaska and dealing with an FFL transfer elsewhere would have run >$100, and I’d feel silly jacking the price of a basic 10/22 to over three hundred bucks based on shipping/fees. So it was sort of a “grit your teeth and deal with it” transaction.

    Good to know it isn’t just Walmart that escorts you out. I’ve never had that experience up here with any other store, whether it be a small local place or a larger chain, so maybe it is an insurance thing. What really got my attention was the store manager suggesting that I might somehow shoot the place up with my new purchase. She should have just said nothing, or explained that it was due to insurance requirements.

    They do sell a wide variety of pistols up here. More of a focus on the big bore revolvers, but they also stock some Ruger .22s and a few semiautos. We have plenty of stores that sell those though, so I see no reason to go to Walmart. Heck, even Fred Meyers has equivalent prices and better corporate policy.

  4. I hate Wal-Mart for many reasons and I would never buy a gun there, but as long as they continue to carry and sell ammo for reasonable prices I will buy it from them.

  5. It’s nice to know some Walmarts still sell firearms. The ones in the Richmond area have basicallystopped sellin shotguns and rifles and now only sell blackpowder rifles (and apparently only sell them during hunting season). Not that I purchased firearms from them anyway but for many, their prices were what made firearms affordable.

  6. This is why I won’t shop there for anything. I will pay a dollar more to support my local gun stores to ensure they are still around when Wal-mart decides to stop carrying ammo too.

  7. Ammo at Wally World *is* that more reasonable around here. As in, $10/50 for 9mm as opposed to $15/50 (and if you buy 5-6 boxes at a time, that adds up quick).

    As for the escort, I don’t know root cause, but at those retailers and at the larger and smaller shops here in the ATL, I’ve experienced that. Of course, at the smaller, the counter is actually at the door, so that wasn’t a big deal. I could see it as a validation step to avoid theft as well, but someone might as well ask a retailer to find out.

  8. I picked up a rifle from Fleet Farm a couple weeks ago, and the employee had to carry it up to the front register. Same thing at most other big box places I’ve ever got a gun at, except Gander Mountain, but they have registers at the gun counter. They did have to zip-tie the case closed though. Insurance reasons I’m sure.

    What’s funny about it is that the last two times I’ve gotten guns from those places, I was open carrying.

  9. I tend to buy from smaller, local shops, but I second the idea of Sportsman’s Warehouse over Wal-Mart. In fact, I’d buy from them before I bought from any big-chain retailer. Their prices are better than Cabela’s or Bass Pro and their staff (at least at the one near me) is helpful and knows their stuff.

    1. I loved the Sportsman’s Warehouse near my mom’s. Unfortunately, it closed along with a good majority of their operations.

  10. Luckily the SW in Anchorage is their #1 most profitable store. They’ve been having trouble special ordering stuff lately because the chain is going through a lot of troubles but I don’t think we’ll be losing them anytime soon. Generally a great place to shop!

  11. I was in SW last week buying some .380 ammo and was surprised that the shelves were no longer bare, especially for reloading stuff.

    Apparently the Anchorage store is getting the remainders from the stores that are closing in the lower 48, though per the gun guy they are about done with the round of closings and that supply will dry up.

    Ammo shipping to AK is a pain with the tighter regs on how much (little, really) can be in any container in any shipment on any barge. Put me down as a supporter of connecting to the Canadian railroad system.

  12. The nicest rifle I ever saw being sold at Walmart was a stainless steel Ruger Mini-14 in East Stroudsburg PA. This was about three years ago. The price was about 600 some bucks then, and the employee behind the counter told me that this Mini-14 and all the other guns inside the carousel display case were soon going to be removed from the East Stroudsburg store’s inventory when the entire sporting goods section of the store got renovated. I asked her why such a thing would have to happen, and she said something about Walmart deciding that selling firearms had become too complicated for the sake of profitability.

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