Here are 6 Ways to Save Money at the Grocery Store to keep you from overspending. They include tips and tricks to avoid sales gimmicks and impulse buys.
It’s one of the most common pieces of advice on savings at the grocery store; Don’t eat when you’re hungry. I have found it to be absolutely vital to my wallet to follow this advice. On trips to the store where I don’t eat beforehand, I spend on average 30% more.
After examining other sneaky ways that get me to spend, I found that there were other things I could do to prevent it by simply making a few changes in how I shop. Here are 6 Ways to Save Money at the Grocery Store that I do from now on.
6 Ways to Save Money at the Grocery Store
Don’t shop when you are hungry. Eat a meal before you go shopping. Always. If you can’t do that, at least eat a snack to stave off the hunger monster. Things like donuts, junk food and even fruit that wasn’t on your list looks amazing when we are hungry.
Shop alone if you can. I hardly ever bring my kids when I shop. I find that there isn’t a bunch of things that end up in my cart I hadn’t planned for this way. The same goes for my husband. If I do bring him, we make a pact that the amount spent on stuff not on the list will have a monetary limit. Plus, when I shop alone I tend to get in and out much quicker so I am less likely to be impulsive in my buys.
Don’t buy something just because it’s on sale. It may surprise you to know that sales don’t always mean something is the best price, but many store’s sale prices are everyday prices for another store. Plus, I think we tend to think that a sale means we should get it right now. If it isn’t something on your list and you aren’t sure it will be eaten up in a reasonable amount of time (meaning you don’t have a plan for it now or it isn’t something you buy frequently, such as monthly), it isn’t a good deal. Wasted food is wasted money.
Shop at discount stores first. If you are lucky like I am to have stores like Grocery Outlet near you, go there first. Make your list and go there to see if it’s in the store. I save hundreds of dollars a year doing this. I often find that I can get almost half my grocery list there for half the cost.
Make fewer trips to the store. Every time you go to the store, you are setting yourself up for impulse buys. Make fewer trips to the store and there is less chance for that to happen. If you do need to go frequently because you like to buy produce fresh a few times a week, then go to that section of the store and put your invisible horse blinders on until you get to the checkout.
Don’t assume that the ‘cheap stores’ always have the best prices. Places like Walmart, ALDI, and WinCo are usually regarded as the cheap stores and many people think of them like the end all be all to frugal grocery shopping. The problem with this thinking is that they can creep their prices up and you would have no idea. Before you know it, you are spending more than the other stores in your area are charging. Occasionally thumb through the circulars of other stores and check out their prices. You might be shocked.