Saving on groceries

I am really tired of "advice" that promises far more effect than it delivers. I had the radio on WCBS news when a person said she had the solution to buying groceries  without breaking your budget at a time when food prices have escalated. No coupons. No suggestions of buying in bulk. No suggestions of buying seasonal produce. No suggestions of planning your menus around what is on sale at your local store, so that you incorporate blueberries when they are $1.50 a pint and not when they are $4 a pint.

 Her suggestion was to buy meat labeled "round" or "loin" b/c it's cheaper and less fatty than other cuts. Oh, yes, what a big help that is! The other suggestions were to shop only once a week b/c the assumption is that more trips to the store mean more likelihood of impulse buys. The fact is that shopping at only one place once a week is more efficient in terms of gas and time expenditure. But it does not really save you money on groceries. On the contrary, it prevents you from being able to take advantage at specials at more than one store, which is, supposedly, what some of her other advice consisted of.

She recommended an app that allows you to scan an item to alert you if other stores in the area offer it at a cheaper price. Another high-tech recommendation that is completely useless in terms of saving on items is hand-held scanners in some supermarkets that let you know the running total. You could really do that yourself anyway with a calculator or even an old fashioned pencil and paper. And, though, that might prevent you from spending more than you intended in that trip, it won't really save you money on the purchases you make.

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Ezzie said…
The apps to compare to other stores are extremely useful.
Ariella said…
Yes, but then you have to be willing to go to one store, which rather contradicts the piece of advice of only going making once a week to one place. The prices fluctuate all the time, so you can't just decide to skip the flour at this store and wait until next week's shopping trip to get it at the other store. That week, it may be a higher price. I like to check circular prices before going to stores -- almost all are now accessible online.

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