Groceries can be one of our biggest expenses1 each month. While we may set a chunk of our budget aside for them, it can be easy to get off track. Luckily, there are ways to save at the grocery store. Read on for seven ideas you can try on your next trip.
Make a list
Grocery stores are often designed in ways to persuade you to spend more money than you may want to. Impulse purchases happen,2 but it’s best to avoid them. Stick to only buying what you need by creating a list before you head out the door. When you get to the grocery store, focus on finding only what’s on your list. Another tip – make your list for the entire week, that way you only need to go to the store once.
The classic way to save money at the grocery store is to use coupons.3 Sort through mailers to find coupons for products you use frequently. You can buy or make your own coupon book to keep them organized for future use. Another good idea is to search online for coupons or sales going on at your local store.
Skip name brand products
With many name brand products, you’re paying partially for the name attached to it.4 This causes a lot of products to be overpriced, and we may not even realize it! Instead, try purchasing store brand or generic versions of things you need. Most of the time there isn’t a difference in quality, but there is a difference in the price. And it’s a difference your wallet will like!
Avoid overly packaged foods
Society these days is fast-paced, and we are busy all the time. To save time, we might think it is a good idea to get packaged food at the store. It may seem convenient to buy fruits and vegetables already washed and cut, but these products also usually come with a higher price tag. Instead, buy whole fruits and veggies and dedicate one day to prep them for the rest of the week. That way, you can save time and money.
Try discount supermarkets
Large supermarket chains don’t always have the best deals on the essentials. A good budget-friendly option would be to try discount supermarkets.5 Stores like Aldi® have become popular in recent years, so if you have one near you, it would be worth checking out. You can get similar products you could find at larger chains for a fraction of the price.
Mix in meatless meals
Meat is often one of the more expensive items on our shopping list. While it does go on sale from time to time, another way to save is to work one or two meatless meals into your plan each week. Meatless Monday is a trend for a reason! You’ll see a difference at check out by scaling down on your meat. You’ll also get the chance to try new recipes!
Sign up for loyalty cards
Many grocery stores now offer loyalty programs. By signing up to be a member, you might receive special coupons and discounts on items around the store. Most large grocery chains offer special sales each week to card holders. You can also often earn points towards saving on gas at their fuel stations, which is just another bonus!
The views expressed by the articles and sites linked in this post do not necessarily reflect the opinions and policies of Cash Central or Community Choice Financial® .
1Schwahn, Lauren. (2022, Apr 25). Retrieved from: https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/finance/how-much-should-i-spend-on-groceries
2Dickler, Jessica. (2022, Aug 20). Retrieved from: https://www.cnbc.com/2022/08/20/shoppers-spend-over-300-a-month-on-impulse-purchases-despite-recession-fears.html
3Barroso, Amanda and Neidel, Courtney. (2022, Jul 13). Retrieved from: https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/finance/how-to-coupon
4Vachon, Pamela. (2023, Apr 28). Retrieved from: https://www.cnet.com/home/kitchen-and-household/heres-how-much-buying-store-brand-groceries-will-save-you/
5Newbery, Emma. (2022, Sep 2). Retrieved from: https://www.fool.com/the-ascent/personal-finance/articles/6-best-grocery-stores-to-save-you-money/