7 Shopping Tips to Reduce Your Grocery Bill

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April 5, 2017

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With rising prices, many Edmontonians are discovering their monthly grocery bill increasing. One of the best ways to improve your control over your finances as well as save money is to learn how to reduce your grocery bill.

These seven tips are a great way to learn how to potentially save a lot of money simply by reducing how much you spend at the grocery store.

1. Write Everything Down

You’ve probably heard this one before, but it definitely bears repeating. The simple act of recording how much you spend on food is a great first step to identifying areas in which you can save money. Whether you write it down using a pen and paper or prefer to use a computer or a grocery-tracking app, knowing where your money is going for groceries can help you determine where you can cut costs.

2. Make a Plan and Stick To It

The grocery store makes it easy for you to wind up purchasing a few items you had no intention of buying when you first entered the store. Before your shopping trip, write down a list of exactly what you need and be sure to stick to it. You’ll notice that most of your essentials are on the outer areas of the store. If you do see an item on sale or something that wasn’t on your list, promise yourself to not buy it in that moment.

3. Generic Brands

Sure, the generic brands don’t always have the fancy packaging of their name brand counterparts – but they are less expensive and, for the most part, taste exactly the same. Wherever possible, start swapping out name brand items for their generic versions. This can add up to several hundred dollars in savings throughout the course of the year.

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4. Buy More Fruits and Vegetables

It’s easy to be tempted to buy ready-to-eat meals and snacks, but if you increase the number of fruits and vegetables you buy during your grocery shop, you stand to gain a lot in both savings and health benefits. Fruits and vegetables, especially when purchased seasonally, are often less expensive than loading up on processed or packaged foods.

5. Coupons

Beyond the coupons you can find in your local paper or online, many manufacturers offer coupons directly. There is a catch, however, in that you need to request them. Email or call up your favourite brands and ask them to include you on their coupon mailing list. Over the course of a year, you can save hundreds of dollars.

6. Stock Up on Sales

Lots of groceries can be purchased in bulk when they’re on sale. Items like meat and non-perishable items can be frozen or stored for a long time. Your freezer is also a great place to store items like bread. Not only will you save when you buy, but having plenty of food on hand in the house will help encourage you to cook more meals at home instead of ordering in or going out to a restaurant.

7. Rotate Your Shopping

Many people think travelling around the city and shopping at multiple stores isn’t worth it because of all the extra time and expense. When you do it right, this method can help you save. Instead of hitting all the local stores during the same week, pick a different store each week and buy the best-priced items. Many grocery stores have circulars or websites that will help you plan out where to buy your favourite items at the best price.

Whether you’re looking to shave off a few dollars from your monthly expenses or need a more aggressive strategy to increase your savings, making smart decisions at the grocery store can add up to some significant savings!

Before you head to the store, always have a plan in mind and keep careful track of how much you spend. Before you know it, your wallet will thank you, and, best of all, you can still enjoy delicious meals without sacrificing on quality, taste, or flavour.

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Photo credit: couple, receipts




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