The grocery store is like a second home to most Americans spending a lot of time, and money, on items that could actually be found at a lower prices in a different stores. According to CBS News.com, a survey by the government reveals the cost of providing healthy meals for a family of four ranges from $131 a week and only increases for the “elite” who spend an average of $299 each week on their family members. These prices can easily be reduced if we stay away from overpriced items at the grocery store and buy those specialty items only at their specific stores.
Unfortunately prices of specialty products in grocery stores are more expensive than items at their specialty store, but don’t fault the grocery store because they are just doing their job, and doing it well. As far as your job and your money, if you plan on “coupon clipping” then use these deals on items you would regularly purchase and stay away from items just because they are on sale. Another way to save at the grocery store is to avoid the impulse section at the checkout. These items are conveniently here for you to look over while waiting in line, having time to consider the unnecessary purchase and addition to your bill.
Avoid those items and take notes on the following items that can be found at lower prices in supermarkets and convenient stores, saving you money on your weekly grocery bill.
Those colorful bouquets of flowers look amazing at the grocery store, but they aren’t worth the cost. “I find that the pre-made grocery store bouquets are often less fresh,” writes Faith Durand on the Apartment Therapy site. “They seem to wilt faster. Also, they are usually padded with a great deal of unnecessary greenery.”
This doesn’t mean you need to skip grocery store flowers altogether, however. Durand recommends just buying single varieties of flowers, looking for the freshest bunch with buds that aren’t fully opened yet. Make your own arrangement, or just display a single flower in a small vase for an elegant look.
It’s painful to buy greeting cards for $3 or $4 knowing that they could end up in the trash bin within days. In many cases, there’s a better alternative that costs pennies.
Amazon sells a 50-pack of colorful cards and envelopes for a bit more than $10. That works out to around 21 cents a card. They’re blank cards — but you can fill them with a hand-written note that the recipient will love more than a bland message from Hallmark.
How did spices at the grocery store get so expensive? Even basics like cinnamon and garlic powder seem to get pricier all the time — forget about the fancy stuff like saffron and whole vanilla beans.
Consumer Reports ran a blind taste test using pricey name-brand spices versus cheaper generic versions in different recipes, and asked tasters to compare them. For the most part, the tasters couldn’t tell them apart. “You don’t need to spend more unless the spice is the main attraction,” Consumer Reports said in this video.
Here’s a better idea: Skip the grocery store spices completely and head to the nearest health-food store where spices are sold in bulk. Buy just a small amount at a time — it’s much cheaper and keeps your spices fresher. Another option is to grow your own herbs and have a supply of fresh basil, oregano and thyme always on hand.
Grocery stores hit batteries with a steep markup and for good reason: When you need batteries, you often need them fast.
One of the best places to get batteries is in bulk at Costco or other warehouse clubs. Amazon can have some pretty good deals as well.
The grocery markup on diapers is hefty because, like with batteries, when you need them, you really need them. But if parents can do enough smart planning, there really is no reason to buy diapers from the supermarket.
Warehouse clubs such as Costco sell monster boxes of diapers at decent prices. You can find good deals on diapers at drugstores, too, but only when they have great sales, the WiseBread site reports. And Amazon has diaper discounts through its Amazon Mom program.
So the next time you are at the grocery store remember to stay away from these overpriced items and the additional charges to your weekly grocery bill.
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