Grocery shopping is something we all have to do, but with the number of stores and products available, it can be a challenge to save money. And more, the world of credit cards and online shopping often doesn’t help. Here’s a list of seven simple things you can do to save money on your groceries today.
1. Make a list
It’s always a good idea to make a shopping list so that you only get what you need. If you’ve ever gone into a store without one, you’ll know how tempting it can be just to wander around the aisles, picking out whatever takes your fancy. If you make a list, your wallet will thank you.
2. Shop with a calculator
It’s easy to stay within a set budget these days because practically everyone has a calculator on their phone. Shopping with a calculator helps you keep track of how much you’re spending, and if you start going over your limit, you can set aside non-essential items and focus on what you need.
3. Bring cash only
This one is tough in an increasingly cashless world, but if you’re determined to stick to a budget then bringing cash only will help. After all, it’s impossible to spend more than you want if you can’t charge it to your card, right?
4. Shop around
It’s something that all savvy consumers should do, but too often just forget. Shopping around is probably the most straightforward way to make savings. Check your regular store’s competitors to see what offers they have and take advantage of them.
5. Lentils instead of meat
A good way to save is to find alternatives to meat, and lentils are an ideal way both to get your required allowance of protein and spend less in stores. Relatively cheap and versatile, there are hundreds of delicious recipes you can find for using lentils creatively. And if they’re really not your thing, go for mushrooms instead.
6. Lots of veg
Generally speaking, vegetables are cheaper than meat or ready meals, so if you’re interested in saving money it’s a good idea to buy lots of them. Although it might mean more work in the kitchen the savings can be immense, and your overall health will benefit too.
7. Buy store brands
It can be controversial to say this, but the difference between big-name brands and off-brands is, in many ways, just psychological. Just ask yourself, is that big-name toilet paper really better than the generic store version? Have a careful think about which products mean the least to you in terms of branding and go for the generic store alternatives. You’ll see an almost immediate difference in your weekly spend.
Whatever method you choose to try and save money on your groceries, it’s important to stick to the plan over time. Budget carefully, focus on the essentials and try not to go off-script unless it’s absolutely necessary. While you might only see small savings week to week, the extra money can be significant in the long run.