How to Save Money at the Grocery Store
Saving money at the grocery store is one of the easiest ways to make your limited budget stretch further. Seniors can save money at the grocery store by applying a variety of cost saving tricks and tips that only take a few minutes to do.
1. Make a Grocery List
I’m always so surprised to see the number of people strolling around with their grocery carts without a list in hand. Make a list and use it.
In fact, before you even head out to the grocery store, take a quick inventory of the items that you already have on hand and the ones that you need to get. This will help you buy the things that you need and avoid buying extra items that were not on your list.
Once you’ve taken inventory of your pantry and fridge, make another list of meals that you can currently make with the items on hand. Being able to use what you currently have in stock will save you more money as you’re using up what you already have instead of buying more items.
2. Use Loyalty Cards and Coupons
Once you’ve created the list of items that you need for the week, cross-reference store ads and online coupons for extra savings. If you need some more laundry detergent, chances are it’s easy to find coupon online for that. You can stack up the store’s ad on the laundry detergent with extra savings from the manufacturer.
3. Switch to Generic Items
Making the switch from branded items to generic items is also a great way to save. Store branded items often have the same or better quality than the branded items.
Personal favorites of generic items include: sliced breads, cereal, and toilet paper. The Wal-Mart Raisin Bran cereal actually has more fiber and less sugar than some of the branded cereals. Costco’s Kirkland Signature toilet paper is a great buy and is very strong and absorbent. Go ahead. Compare the ingredients side by side. You’ll be impressed that you’re not only saving money but you are making a better health purchase.
4. Avoid the Crowds
Use being a retiree to your advantage while grocery shopping. Shop while others are at work. Shopping when the grocery store is half-empty allows you to purchase the items that you actually need; while shopping when the grocery store is full of people causes you to purchase extra items that you didn’t intend on getting. Call this a scarcity mentality, but when you shop while there are a lot of people at the grocery store, you’ll find yourself adding extra items to the cart even if they weren’t on your list.
5. Shop on Certain Days of the Week
Buy meats on Wednesday when most of the markdowns on meat are made. You can expect an average savings of 25% simply by purchasing meat on Wednesday.
6. Get a Rain Check
Did the store offer a fantastic deal that quickly sold out? Talk with the cashier or store manager and get a rain check for the item. Just because you cannot purchase the item right away does not mean you cannot come back and pick it up at a later time.
There are a myriad of ways to save money and even more ways to spend money at the grocery store. Some deals may not be such a great deal if you compare the price per ounce or if you buy more than you’ll be able to use up. By applying the above helpful tips and tricks, you’ll walk away with more money left in your wallet.
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