We’ve all noticed, groceries are getting more expensive each year and it’s getting harder and harder to keep up. It can be a shock to walk out of the supermarket with nothing but some chicken, celery and a carton of milk and get charged $20 at the counter. The only option is to adopt and adapt. We’ve got 10 tips to help you save and come out on top when you leave the supermarket.
If you just pop into the store without a list and buy things as you see them, you will surely end up spending more than if you come in with a concise list of what you need. Not only that, but it’s likely you will end up with items you didn’t really need and forget some essentials. You might leave the store thinking that you are under budget when in reality, you have come home with some unnecessary items and you might need to return to the store again later.
It can be tempting to purchase food items at convenience stores or specialty shops as this can often be quicker. They might also have certain items that you won’t find at the grocery store or supermarket. The downside is that the food at these places will almost always be more expensive. That’s fine if you really want that specialty item but leave these shops for those purchases only and go do the rest of your shopping at a grocery store or supermarket so that you don’t spend too much on overpriced items
Always keep an eye out for sales. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t purchase things that aren’t on sale, but you should still always be looking for sales. If there are 2 similar items for sale of equal quality and one of them is 30% off, it would be foolish to miss out just because you weren’t paying attention. You can also check out fliers and sales on the supermarket websites to give you an idea of what to look for before you go.
Coupons are still a thing! You can also find these in flyers and online on the supermarket websites. It can take a bit of time to do this before you go food shopping but people are still doing this because there is cash to be saved by using coupons.
Classic advice but still applicable! There’s no better way to leave the grocery store with a bunch of items you don’t need than to come in without having eaten and purchase random items just because they look good at the time.
Okay, so there are some items that you might be a bit picky on and maybe you just don’t like the store brand soda, but for a vast selection of food items, the store brand is just as good as the name brand and is sold for a fraction of the cost. Did you know that sometimes (often the case for items such as cookies, bread and chips), the store brand version is actually made with the same process and even in the same factory as the name brand? In these cases, all you’re paying for with the name brand is the branding.
Always check expiry and best before dates on perishable items before purchasing. There’s nothing worse than buying an expensive cheese only to realize that you only have a day to eat it. Letting items die in your fridge is a great way to waste money and this can be easily avoided with some planning and alertness.
For items that are sold in different unit
sizes, check and compare. You might find that for 50 cents more, you can get
twice the ketchup by going up one size. You might spend 15 minutes in the
toilet paper aisle making these comparisons but at least you’ll get the best
bang for your buck!
- Buy in season and check ripeness
Fruits and vegetables are of course less expensive when they are in season. You might find yourself spending an unseemly amount on corn on the cob if you decide to buy a batch of these in December. There’s almost always something in season so if you’re not too picky and are willing to wait, there’s ways to save money here. If there’s a fruit or veggie that you really want or need for a recipe and it’s not in season, consider purchasing frozen or canned instead.
Think about ripeness as well when purchasing produce. Buying a dozen ripe bananas or a 5 ripe avocados at the same time will surely end up with waste. Try to select them at different levels of ripeness to make sure you don’t have to throw anything out. It’s always a shame to waste a good avocado!
We live in a day and age where everybody
carries a calculator in their pocket, so use it! In between texts to your
significant other to make sure you are purchasing the right items, keep count
of your purchases on your phone’s calculator. This is easy to do and will avoid
any surprises when you arrive at the checkout counter.