With the amount of money we spend on car payments, rent, insurance, and credit card bills, it simply makes sense to cut corners when and where we can. One area in which we can save is on grocery bills. With a little bit of planning and patience, cutting costs at the grocery store is no trouble at all. All the knowledge you need is listed here, so check out these extremely easy ways to save on groceries!
10. Don’t Shop Hungry
Shopping hungry can be a dangerous game. People headed to the grocery store on an empty stomach tend to buy anything and everything that looks appetizing, whether it is a necessary purchase or not. Eat a snack before your excursion and stick to the shopping list – your wallet will thank you.
9. Plan Your Meals
By setting yourself a menu for the week, you can accurately plan what ingredients you will need to purchase. This streamlines the process and cuts down on food that might be grabbed impulsively and wasted. It also allows you to plan to buy foods that can possibly be used in multiple recipes. Check your pantry for items you may already have available, and be sure not to double up. Meal planning is the thriftiest way to shop.
8. Shop in Bulk
For items such as rice, beans, and grains, hit the bulk bin aisle for some excellent savings. By avoiding name brands and over-priced labels, you can save big time. Bulk bins can also be helpful because they allow you to buy the exact amount of product you need – saving you money and the hassle of having to throw out unused food.
7. Mind the Price Per Ounce Label
This is a relatively unknown grocery store hack. If you look closely at the store label beneath your item, it lists the price of the product per ounce. This number allows the comparison of similar products that may differ in size. If you are willing to deviate from your favorite brands, the savings will begin to add up.
6. Look High and Low
Did you know that grocery stores attempt to deceive you by placing expensive and well known brands directly at eye level? Many shoppers just grab the products they are familiar with and move on. The smart shopper, however, will take the extra time to look around and compare prices, ensuring they will get the best deal for the same item.
5. Buy in Season
The price of certain produce can skyrocket when it is not in season locally. Trucking in fruits and vegetables from other areas of the country – and world – drives up prices considerably. Wait to enjoy those items when you see their prices dip.
4. Do Your Own Chopping
Another way that chains justify charging exponentially higher prices is by offering their products pre-chopped, shredded, or otherwise prepared. Produce, cheeses, and meats are likely offenders. Buy your products whole and spend a little extra time in the kitchen – you won’t believe the difference this makes!
3. Try the Farmers Market Before Closing
Hours after the crowds have passed through, but before they close up and leave, farmers are willing to make a deal. Offer to buy their products at a reduced price – you’d be surprised how many of them do not want to bring back unsold produce. You’ll walk out with the freshest fruits and veggies at a fraction of the price!
2. Shop the Perimeter
Perhaps it’s a myth, but it is a common theory that the most unhealthy and unnecessary items, such as snacks, candies, and sodas are found at the center of most grocery stores. Foods such as produce, breads, dairy, and meats are typically found on the perimeter of the store. By avoiding the areas of those tempting – but expensive – snack items, you are able to get in and out with your shopping list intact.
1. Coupons, Weekly Ads, Membership Cards
Get familiar with your local grocery store! Sign up for their membership cards, keep their coupons, and peruse their weekly ads. Buy items that are on sale and have a long shelf life. By learning the ins-and-outs of your favorite market, you will save, save, save!
Planning and budgeting is important in every aspect of your finances, and grocery shopping should be no different. By adopting a new way of shopping, you should see a difference in your bank account in no time. Spending your money wisely will feel great, and you will never want to revert back to your wasteful ways. Happy shopping!