10 Tips on How To Save Money on Groceries

How to Save Money When Grocery Shopping - Top 10 Ways to Save

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Regardless if you are shopping just for yourself or for the whole family, the amount you spend for your groceries usually take a big chunk out of your paycheck. However, there are measures that you can do to keep your grocery costs under control. Here are some simple tips on how you can save some pounds off your grocery shopping bill.

#1 Plan your meals diligently

Take note of the items that you already have on hand and create a list of meals that you can make using the ingredients that you have. Chances are, you already have options based on what you’ve already got on your pantry. Try your best to make use of items you already have to save money and avoid food from going to waste. If you’re lacking culinary inspiration, we highly recommend the site Supercook which allows you to search for recipes based on items that you already have at home.  

#2 Don’t go shopping without a list

You can save yourself a small fortune when you are armed with a list of the things that you need to buy. It is very easy to wind up with items that you have no use for if you don’t have a grocery list that you can stick rigidly to. It also prevents you from lingering on the alleys and buying items on impulse. Make the trip quick and easy: just tick the items off your list, make your purchase and leave the store immediately.  

#3 Check for the sales

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Check the promotional flyers or websites of grocery stores for any sales. If you see a good deal, try to create a meal plan around the item. A note on discount sales: not because it's cheap means you have to buy it. Bulk sales, for example, are great for saving money but only when you are purchasing non-perishable items that you use often. Skip the bulk discounts if you aren’t sure that you can use the items before they expire or if you don’t have room at all to freeze them.

#4 Shop alone

It could be fun to make a day trip out of supermarket shopping with the whole family, but if at all possible, leave your children or spouse at home. Avoiding impulse purchases could be a feat when you are shopping with different family members. Do you know that families in the UK spend an excess of £85 a week on food shopping? Sometimes the kids, or even your partner, will sneak things to the shopping cart, leading you to spend more money than you have initially planned. Shopping alone makes it easier to stick to your list and budget.

#5 Do the math

Most of the major supermarkets show price per unit or price per 100g which makes it easier to check if you are getting the best value for your money. For instance, buying multipack seem to cost less than purchasing individual unit but it may not always be the case. The same goes with big family/jumbo packs. To make sure that you are getting the best available price for your items, whip out your calculator and crunch some numbers.

#6 Put in a little elbow grease

Buying pre-cooked or pre-sliced items are certainly tempting and convenient but they often cost more because you are paying for the extra preparation process. Instead of purchasing diced cheeses, fruits and veggies, for instance, buy them in their whole state and do the chopping yourself.  You can also save money by buying your chicken whole instead of buying them precut. The same goes with cooking your own food instead of buying precooked meals. Not only is it more economical, but you also get more control of the nutritional value and freshness from what you eat. 

#7 Scope the shelves

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Nothing is coincidental in how your supermarket is set up. Do you know that you are more likely to see the more expensive items at eye level, front and center, while cheaper brands are kept mostly at higher or lower shelves? To make sure that you save money when doing your grocery shopping, make sure to check all the shelves for hidden deals.

#8 Listen to upbeat music while you shop

Ever noticed why many supermarkets play slow music? This is to trick you into moving slowly through the aisles - and buying 29 percent more! Outsmart your supermarket on your next trip by wearing your headphones and playing some catchy upbeat, mix as you shop. 

#9 Consider a meatless day

Meat is the the most expensive item on the average food bill. If you can incorporate a meatless day for even at least once a week, you can save significant money. By having a staple vegetarian meal for day or starting your Meatless Monday habit, (or whichever day works for you),  you can easily save as much as £30 a month.

#10 Don’t be a brand snob

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If you want to save money on your grocery shopping, it may be wise to consider buying your store’s own-brand products. Store brands are usually much cheaper than the branded options, you would be hard pressed to discern any difference in taste or quality. To check out how thousands of own-brand products fare against branded rival, the website supermarketownbrandguide.co.uk offers very helpful tips and verdicts. There is also no reason to turn your nose up on cheap supermarkets like Aldi, Iceland or Lidl where you can find cheaper but just as good products without the popular logos.