Every Thursday is our grocery shopping day. Thursday in my area, is when the new Publix ad is released (Some stores’ new ad starts on Wednesday. You’ll have to ask your store). Shopping on Thursday gives me more of a chance of making sure my deals are in the store. I already have my list and coupons rubberbanded to my coupon carrier, ready to go. We make it a family outting. We usually go after dinner when there’s less of a crowd. And if my little boy was good at dinner, we get him one of those free sugar cookies from the bakery.
Here’s my secrets to a successful grocery shop!
The key thing is to STICK TO THE LIST! You went through all of the trouble to plan out the list and stick to budget. You don’t want to run up your bill with the frivolous impulse buys. This may be a hard rule to stick by if you’re new to saving. If you’re a newbie, start out slow. If you are prone to impulse buys, give yourself a limit for the extra stuff you HAVE to have, say $10. Each week slowly take away $1 or 2 and challenge yourself to stay to your list. That leads me to my next point!
And the other key thing is to never go to the grocery store on an empty belly! You won’t believe how many times I had to put down the chocolate chip cookies, due to my grumbling tummy. It will also help keep you away from the impulse buys!
On the way in, I always grab any new coupon books. They’re usually by the weekly ad display or over by the BOGOs (buy one, get ones) in a cardboard display of their own. ALWAYS GET 2! You never know when an item might end up BOGO and would need 2 coupons!
Always check out the clearance rack before you head to the checkout line. This is why I take my coupon carrier with me to the store. You never know what is going to be on clearance at your store. For instance, today Chocolate Chip Instant Quaker Oatmeal was on clearance from $3.91 to $2.74. I happened to have $1 off coupon in my carrier, snagging the oatmeal for only $1.74!
If the item you wanted is out of stock, ask about rain checks. Lots of stores allow you to buy the item at the price you wanted when the item is out, then you can come back at your leisure to pick it up when it’s back on the shelves. Publix as well as Target does this. Check your local store.
Pick your checkout person carefully! There are some cashiers that are “happier” taking your coupons than others. The more organized you are with having your coupons ready, the more willing they are to smoothly assist you with your checkout.
Lastly, check out your bill! I always give my coupons last, slowly watching the total come down $20-30. Then I always compare the amount I spent to the amount I saved. Give yourself a pat on the back for the savings you have accomplished! Even saving $5 gives you an extra $5 in your pocket!
Whoo-hoo! Was that Saving Said Simply? If you missed it, check out My Couponing Life….In a Nutshell for a quick summary of how to start couponing!