Here are a few techniques on how to save money grocery shopping without resorting to extreme couponing.
Food is an essential expense, so learning how to save money grocery shopping can save a significant amount of money. You might have even seen or heard about “extreme couponers” who can get hundreds of dollars of groceries for only a few bucks, or even completely free. But that takes a tremendous amount of work and is a job all by itself. Without resorting to such time-consuming work, there are a few other things you can do to save money while grocery shopping.
Join a Grocery Store’s Loyalty Program
Many grocery stores have special programs for loyal customers. In return for your name, address and phone number, the grocery store will offer you exclusive discounts. These programs don’t cost anything to join.
Keep an Accurate Inventory of Your Food Supply
Ideally, you only want to buy an item if it is on sale. Even with careful planning, you may occasionally run out of an item you immediately need and have to buy it at a time when it’s not on sale. To help keep this from happening, keep an accurate inventory of your food supply so you can anticipate when you will run out of an item well in advance and therefore have a larger window of time to stock up on items that are on sale.
Plan Meals around Weekly Ads
Every week, a grocery store will have certain items on sale. When this happens, take advantage of the sales and plan your meals around the items you’re able to purchase at a discount.
Generic foods cost less than name brand food, but most of the time, you can’t taste the difference between the two. And in the few instances when you can, the taste difference is very subtle, or the generic actually tastes better!
Buy in Bulk
As a general rule, purchasing anything in bulk saves money. Food is no different. Whenever possible, buy items you know you’ll use in the largest packaging available. But make sure you’ll actually use everything you purchase. By wasting some of it, you lose the cost savings of buying in bulk.
Learn Market Prices for Commonly Purchased Groceries
Sometimes there will be a promotion for an item you didn’t expect. But before you buy it, is it really a good deal? If you know what the item normally sells for and what its usual sale price is, you can accurately determine if the current promotion is worth the cash.
Ask for a Rain Check to Save Money Grocery Shopping
Especially great deals will go fast. By the time you show up at the grocery store, they may be out of the item you planned on purchasing. If this happens, don’t worry. Most grocery stores will offer a rain check, so when the item is back in stock, you can purchase it at the promotional price.
Join a Grocery Kickback Program
There are a variety of apps that will offer points or cash for buying certain grocery items. They usually require you to provide proof of purchase by taking a picture of a receipt and uploading it. Only then can you receive your reward. This is a great tip for saving money grocery shopping for items you’ll be purchasing anyway, and is easy to use.
Don’t Shop When Hungry
You’ve probably heard it before, but it’s true: Shopping when hungry makes it more likely you’ll buy more food than you originally intended. Plan your shopping excursions right after breakfast or lunch to avoid impulse buys.
Avoid Processed Foods
Many of the processed foods available aren’t the most healthy or nutritious, although they are extremely convenient. If you’re able to go without the added processing, you can buy fresh ingredients and make the dish yourself. It will take time, but it will save money (and it’s better for you!).
Visit your nearest Title Tree store for more tips on spending less and on how to save money grocery shopping – or if you need a little help making ends meet right about now.