If you’re looking for ways to cut your spending a good place to start is your local supermarket. On average my family drops a few hundred bucks a month on food expenses so I’m always looking for new ways to save money on groceries.
Here are all the tips I could find for saving money on groceries:
1. Shop alone. My wife and I are polar opposites when it comes to shopping. I like to get it, get what I need, and get the hell out as fast as possible. My wife prefers to walk up and down each aisle (spending money along the way). It drives me nuts. And if I bring the kids…oh boy.
2. Don’t shop when you’re hungry. I’m often guilty of breaking this rule and it always costs me in the end. Once my stomach starts growling cookies, Twinkies, and other snacks start magically appearing in the shopping cart.
3. Make a list and stick to it. Shopping off a list ensures you only buy what you need and it also saves you from making multiple trips to pick up things you forgot.
4. Take a calculator. It’s easy to spend more than you realize if you’re not paying close attention. Use a calculator to keep a running total so you’re not shocked when you get to the register.
5. Compare the price per unit. Is the 16 ounce bottle selling for $1.99 a better deal than the 22 ounce bottle for $2.79? The only way to know is to compare the price per ounce (the 16 ounce bottle is the better deal). Most stores include the price per unit right next to the price. If not, that calculator will come in handy!
6. Make one big shopping trip instead of a lot of little ones. The more often you walk into the store the more opportunities there will be to overspend. Plus, the more trips you make the more you’ll spend on gas, and it’s always wise to look for new ways to improve gas mileage.
7. Buy in bulk whenever possible. It’s usually cheaper…but don’t assume! Remember to check the price per unit to be sure you’re getting the best deal.
8. Look up and down. Supermarkets place the most expensive items at eye level, so if you want to find the best deals you’ll have to go looking for them.
9. Use coupons. Yes, it can be a pain in the butt to have to clip them and drag them with you to the store. but it can save you big at checkout.
10. Shop at stores that double or triple coupons. Why save 50 cents when you can save $1.50?
11. Shop at larger supermarkets. They usually have better deals than convenience stores that charge you a premium for the “convenience”.
12. Watch the cash register. Scanning errors happen all the time and if you keep a close eye you may catch one that keeps you from being overcharged.
13. Ask for a raincheck. If a popular item goes on sale and the store runs out, don’t just let the deal slip through your fingers. Go to customer service and ask for a raincheck so you can take advantage of the price at a later date.
There are probably many more ways to save money on groceries. What tips do you have?