Going grocery shopping can quickly add up at the register if you’re not careful. At least it’s better than eating out every meal, which could be the cost of an extra mortgage payment a month in what you spend to have someone cook, serve, and cleanup after you. Sure, it’s nice to be able to someone take care of the cooking without having to clean up the mess, but it gets expensive very quickly. From grabbing coffee in the morning on the way to work, to going out to lunch, even grabbing snacks or a drink at the gas station can add up if you do it often enough. While sure, it’s nice to go out to eat on special occasions, going grocery shopping is big savings, and you can save even more at the register if you’re careful.
Eat a Full Meal Before Shopping
If you’ve ever gone to the grocery store when you are hungry, you know that not only do you stock up on any free samples that may be around, but also fill up the cart with whatever looks good at the time. By the time you get home and eat and come back to your senses you will wonder why you spent all that extra money on junk that is unhealthy and probably threw off your food budget.
Never Leave Home Without a List
Not only is eating important before you leave the house, but also, it’s a good idea to take inventory and make a list of everything you need, so that way you aren’t left to be walking aimlessly around the store throwing extra items into the cart while you’re looking for items on your list. It’s also a good idea what when making your list, if you could organize by section of the store so that way you don’t have to keep skipping over items on your list and putting yourself at risk of missing an item of importance, realizing when you finally get home.
Stick to the Perimeter of the Store
My wife said one time that it’s a good idea to stick to the perimeter if the store, and I didn’t realize at the time, but it’s actually a good tip not only to save the register, but also on the waistline as well. Around the perimeter of the store is where you will find the fresh produce, meats, dairy, as well as the frozen items, which can be good for buying veggies to use at a later date. It’s when you start going up and down the aisles are when you can start loading up on impulse purchases.
Clipping Coupons Can Be Replaced
It’s sort of sad that the days of getting the Sunday paper, spreading out the sale papers, and sit down to clip the coupons for the weekly grocery shopping. While newspaper subscriptions may be on the decline, that doesn’t mean that coupons will go away, in fact we just have to look another way to save money. If you go on your grocery store’s website, you can actually load digital coupons onto your shopper rewards card that will come off at the register. The only trick is that you have to remember which coupons you loaded on there, so you may have to print out a list before you go.
Shop at Off-Peak Times
Trying to go to the grocery store on a Saturday or Sunday is just a nightmare. Not only are the parking lots slammed, but so are the aisles, risking frustration yourself and taking it out by knocking carts out of the way, trying to get through. If you go during the week, not only will you find less of a crowd, in fact if you go after dinner mid-week, you may not even see anyone in the aisle, but you can also take advantage of in-store sales that expire by the time the busy weekend crowd arrives.
Stock Up on Fuel Points
Not only is using your rewards card great to take off the coupons and in-store sales at the register, but it can also add up the fuel points so that you can save at the gas pump as well. By building up points you can save at least ten cents a gallon at the pump, but stock up your points and you could have even larger savings, which depending on the size of your gas tank, could be huge savings compared to otherwise paying full price to fill up your gas tank.