Cutting costs on groceries is a great way to put that extra change back into your pocket for a vacation or other special need that you may have. It really is just a matter of learning and putting into practice a few techniques that that can become a pleasant routine each time you shop.
Here are 11 tips that can save you at least $10 on your next trip to the grocery store
Forget the Brand Names.
Are you the type of shopper that goes for brand names, thinking you’re getting the highest quality you’re paying for? You would be surprised at some of the store brands that taste very similar to name brands but are available at a fraction of the cost you pay now. Many smaller companies have products equally as good or even better tasting than the name brand ones on the shelves. Remember that stores pay to have their products placed on store shelves, and the little guys may not have the means to do so. Check it out.
Can’t Give Up Name Brands?
If you are dead convinced that your name brand foods are the cat’s meow, start shopping in the superstores. In today’s bad times, many people have returned to stores like Wal-Mart for name brands and they find them at prices at least 20% less.
Watch Luring Gimmick Sales
Comparing grocery items can be almost as much fun as a good garage sale. Learn to make those special gimmick sales that are aimed at luring you in to buy more other items with raised prices.
Every day should be a situation as if you’re a contestant on The Price is Right when you visit the grocery store. Know what the general pricing is at other competitive stores so that you don’t end up paying too much on other food items that are not on special.
Demand Integrity of Storeowners.
Almost always, the store will run out of the advertised special. Do not be embarrassed to ask for a rain check on those items. Remember the expiration date so you can buy that item before the date expires.
If you are told that no rain checks are given, be suspicious of false advertising and report this to the better business bureau.
Oops – the Customer Grabbed the Wrong Item!
When cutting costs on groceries, be aware of grocery store tricks. One trick that some grocery stores use is to advertise an item on sale and place an almost identical item right beside it at a much higher price. For example a brand name Chile with beans was advertised on sale at $.99, but an inattentive customer might pick up the name brand Chile with no beans by mistake at the price of $2.25 per can. If that person never checks his receipt, he will never discover the mistake. This is one way shoppers help give grocers extra profits!
Price Tag Discrepancy.
Be alert at the checkout counter. Watch the prices of items as they ring up and check your receipt before leaving the checkout stand.
If you find an item at a great markdown price on a shelf but are charged the original price at the checkout stand, do not hesitate to call the discounted price to the attention of the cashier. By law, they must sell you the item at the special discounted price.
Know your cuts of meat. For instance a round steak contains three cuts of beef that are cut off and sold separately at much higher prices: eye of round steak, top round also sold as Château Breand, and cube steak, which is round steak that has been put through the meat tenderizer.
When you see a good sale on chuck roast, which also includes cross-rib roast, ask the butcher in the eat department to take that meat and cut it up for you. There’s no extra charge for this. Your special cuts might include ground beef, stir-fry strips, carne asada, beef stew cuts, chuck steak, and more.
Buy Meat in Quantity, Never Individual Cuts.
You can buy a whole filet mignon at a fraction of the cost of individual cuts. The same goes for pork. Buy the boneless loin roasts, boneless and have it cut into pork chops.
Take a Stance.
Help to bring prices down by refusing to buy items that are unreasonably priced until the manufacturer backs down. The power of the people as a whole is great.
Support Local Farmers.
If you live in an area that offers a farmers market, you will find it cheaper to buy fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds and sometimes eggs. You’ll save money, get it farm-fresh, and feel better because of a higher vitamins and mineral content. Plus it should stay fresher longer!
11. Consolidate Trips to the Grocer.
Make one or two trips to the grocery store a week, eliminating the need to go daily. You’ll save gas, time and decrease your stress level.