Published On: May 18 2012 10:41:04 AM CDTUpdated On: Nov 24 2014 01:00:00 AM CST
Prepared foods may be convenient, but can be pricey. According to Bankrate, prepare meals at home, double a recipe and freeze the extra for another day.
As most dieters know, grocery shopping when you are hungry can lead to poor choices. Shopping when you aren't hungry will help keep those choices out of your cart.
Some retailers will guarantee that if a price rings incorrectly, you get a discount. Or, if no receipt is given, your purchases are free. Pay attention to the details that can give you additional discounts.
Check out coupon services on the Internet. They can save you money even if you incur a nominal fee.
Avoid buying non-grocery items. They will often be pricier in the grocery store.
Allow your eyes to travel above and below the high-priced items on the center shelves. Cheaper and generic brands often are at the bottom or top of shelving.
Make a shopping list and stick to it. Don't let those impulse items that you don't really need wind up in the cart.
Shop when you are well-rested. Being tired is similar to being hungry -- you are likely to buy more sweets and high-carbohydrate items.
Call the toll-free numbers on your favorite products' labels and tell the customer-service rep how much you enjoy them. Some reps will offer cents-off (or even free) coupons for the product itself; if not, ask.
Join a warehouse club where buying in bulk can save money in the long-term and also save you trips to the store.
Try to shop when you are by yourself. Children not only take more time but can also distract you with unwanted items that add to the grocery bill.
Bring a calculator with you to check and see if the unit price is cheaper on larger packaging and to keep track of your grocery total.
Don't be fooled by familiar products, such as cereal, that have decreased package sizes while keeping prices constant, the food industry's latest response to rising costs.
Shopping early can get you through the store faster and help you spend less.
Seek out supermarkets that will double -- some super stores even triple -- the face value of manufacturers' coupons.
Don't "crisis cook." Shopping after work for the day's dinner gets expensive. Plan a weekly menu before shopping and watch your grocery bill shrink.
Trim your food bill by as much as 19 percent simply by shopping at a couple of different stores.
Check your store for a small section where they discount products that aren't as popular as the manufacturer had hoped. This area can be a gold mine for bargains.
Know when your store marks down expired products such as beef and bread. These can easily be tossed in the freezer for use later.
Check out a local farmer's market for produce. It will be fresh, inexpensive and in season.