The reality of food shopping is just never going to match the ideal, is it? The ideal situation would be to read the fliers, clip coupons, and shop around at 5 or 6 different stores to get the best prices. But this takes a lot of time, and one can argue that time is money, too.
There’s a grocery store that’s very conveniently located about a half-mile from me, but the prices aren’t always the best on some of the items that I normally buy.
Now I’ve been trying to get the most for my dollar. Especially so when it comes to grocery shopping. I know, what a novel idea. No one has ever thought of that before. (!) But in all seriousness, groceries aren’t fixed expenditures. Meaning, there is a little bit of flexibility in terms of how much you spend, unlike a mortgage or car payment.
What it really boils down to, then, is what matters more, money or time? What will prevail, the desire to save money, or weariness?
For me, there has to be a compromise. The fact is, I am weary. Like many other working mothers, there just isn’t enough time in a week, and the weekend is a precious commodity. I like spending quality time with my children and cooking, and there is always some catching up on housework to do. Maybe, just maybe, I can even squeeze in 30 sacred minutes of quiet time for myself.
The last thing I want to do is fill up my weekend with food shopping. Yet food shopping must be done.
So I’ve been frequenting my local grocer, and making sure to buy what’s on sale (I have a store card). If I need cleaning products and they aren’t on sale, I go to Target. This particular grocery store offers gas points as a bonus, so when they add up, I can save at least .10/gallon at a participating gas station. (I think you can save up to .60/gallon.). As a commuter, this is no small thing.
What do you do to save money grocery shopping? Do you have any less-than-obvious tips for cutting costs?
P.S. Don't forget to vote! It's the most important thing you can do today!