If you HATE coupons, don’t dismay! Coupons are not where we get our biggest savings on groceries anyway. Grocery Gamers save an average of 67%, but only about 17% of that is coupon savings. Yep, that means that if you shop smart, you can still save about half without even using a pair of scissors!
Stop living by your shopping list! If you make a list of what you’ve run out of every week, you’ll pay full price for most of what you put on your list, because most of what you need every week is not on sale every single week. By contrast, if you learn to buy just a little more of what you usually need when you see it on sale, that weekly list of expensive “need items” will get shorter and shorter, because you were smart and “invested” at the right time!. Think about it… you can “invest” in everything except for fresh produce.
Be a monster date checker and invest accordingly. Why buy one package of butter when it’s on a killer sale. Check the date, and stock up on however much you use between now and then. I just bought six half gallons of orange juice for $1.50 each, even though we only drink about one a week. I reached in the back and found dates good for five weeks (got one more for good measure). What a score! Do the same with center store packages. Most good sales come around about once every twelve weeks. So if a package is good for a year, you only need to invest in a few months’ worth, unless it’s a seasonal find, like holiday baking goods.
A sale with a “limit” is usually a good indicator of the lowest possible sale, and may even be close to a loss for the store. I know you don’t need four jars of peanut butter now, but if it’s “limit 4” at 99 cents each, you do!
BOGO sales, “buy one get one free” are no brainers. That’s half off, and you know what to do!
Open your eyes to more than groceries at the grocery store. Drugstores have some great sales on cereal, canned foods, frozen foods, milk, eggs, and more. And if you pass by a convenience market or gas station and see a sign for a great deal on milk or eggs, stop in and grab some. There are often great “loss leaders” in these places, but stay away from other groceries, as the prices are jacked up!
Get to know your butcher and baker, and ask when they mark down packages with today’s date (usually in the morning). Plan your future trips accordingly. Buy only what was already on sale, AND marked down for quick sale. Pop them into the freezer, then repeat these words, “I’m a smart investor.”
Plan meals around the fresh produce sales, and use what you already have in your pantry, fridge and freezer.
And… PLEASE don’t ever pay full price!
Got any tricks we should know about? Let us know!
Check out more from Teri at TheGroceryGame.com