5 Savvy Shopping Tips for the Grocery Store
I like to save money on just about everything, and I've gotten pretty inventive to get the best deal, but in this post I'll concentrate on 5 tips that will save you money at the regular grocery stores.
Use Store Rewards Cards, the Key Ring App, and Gas Points
I'm never without my free store reward cards from supermarket and pharmacy chains. The emphasis is on “free” – make sure you don't sign up for another credit card.
I also use a lot of coupons and try to only buy products I have coupons for when they are also on sale, which can add up to incredible savings. I have saved thousands of dollars by using reward cards and coupons over the years.
Don't want to lug around 10 or 20 different reward cards? Then you'll love the free Key Ring App. Just scan the barcodes on your cards and now you only have to show your smart phone when you're shopping.
And look out for other incentives to shop at one supermarket versus another one: Shop & Stop gives me points towards free gas, and we end up using them to fill up my husband's large diesel truck. In a good month, we can save $50, which offsets my costs of mostly buying organic products.
Use Manufacturer Coupons at Target
You can use manufacturer coupons at any store – so use them where the item is cheapest, not at the overpriced health food store.
A lot of people don’t know that Target takes coupons. They even let you stack coupons: they'll accept one of their coupons plus another manufacturer’s coupon per item.
Here is a link to the Target coupon site. Just pick the ones you need and print them out — instant gratification. And if you bring your own bags, they will reward you with a few cents for each one. Every little bit helps, plus you're being green.
Buy Generic Brands
Buying generic brands instead of the brand item is simply smart – they are usually made by the same company. Different package, same item inside.
But do look at the ingredients: if the brand vitamin is made with natural colors and the no-name brand includes unhealthy food dyes, you might want to buy the pricier product (at least I would).
Check out the Clearance and Dollar Aisle
I buy batteries from the Target dollar aisle or the dollar store — you can’t beat getting four for a buck. My son's electronic toys seem to need another battery every week — I’d be in the poorhouse by now if I bought batteries at their regular price.
Better yet, invest in re-chargeable batteries. And make sure you collect and recycle batteries; they do not belong in the trash.
Sometimes, the clearance aisle has staples, like beans, and that's when I stock up.
Forgo the Snacks and Buy Organic Fruits and Vegetables Instead
Did you grow up eating a lot of snacks in between meals? I didn't. Seems to me all those crackers, chips, and “fruit” bars are all just extra calories our kids and we don't need.
If you are wondering how to find the money for organic food: just buy less of the empty calories/processed food and drinks in the middle aisles of the supermarket and buy organic fruit and vegetables with the money you save.
These five savvy shopping tips should help you save quite a bit of money. What are your tips for savvy shopping? Do you already apply these tips?
Image via Dagmar Bleasdale