Food shopping would appear to be one of the household tasks that people have the least amount of love for. It’s an obligatory chore and at the end of the day it’s a bill isn’t it?
We’re pretty confident that if you take these tips on board you’ll save yourself a decent chunk of change every week.
- Don’t go shopping when you are stressed, tired or hungry. This is prime territory for impulse purchases and arriving home without the things that you actually needed.
- On occasion try to do the shopping late in the evening. Chances are there will be a fridge full of meat products reduced in price because they are due to “go off” the next day. They are perfectly fine and can be stored in your freezer until you are ready to use them. Handy to stock-pile every couple of weeks.
- There is nothing wrong with own brand and chances are you won’t compromise on quality. Reach for own brand when it comes to basics like tins of beans and pulses. They’re probably made in the same factory as their expensive branded neighbours.
- Keep the “trolley” money in the glove compartment of your car. Better still, pick up a trolley key and know that it will always be on your set of keys. How many times have you been caught out requiring a note to be broken so you have the change. All those diet cokes and packets of chewing gums add up.
- Leave the shopping bags in the boot of the car. Chances are you forget them regularly and spend a couple of euro a month on bags when it’s totally avoidable.
- Embrace frozen fruit and vegetables. You can spend five euro on an unripe punnet of strawberries that have travelled from half way across the world or you can spent two euro on a frozen bag that can easily be defrosted or used in baking and smoothies.
- Sometimes an online shop is cheaper. You’ll pay a delivery fee but you can still set an exact limit. If you’re on a tight budget you simply won’t allow yourself to over-spend as you are in control of each purchase which appears and totals in the virtual basket.
- Wait until you’ve got a coupon or voucher to buy toiletries, cleaning products and adhoc things like tin foil. A “save ten when you spend 50” voucher will really take the sting out of those “extras” and make it seem like a regular weekly shop.
- Remember that something is only good value if you will actually use it. If it’s destined for an unused life in the press then it’s a waste of money, no matter how good the special offer is.
- Use the special offers and deals to menu and meal plan. You can often check the website to see which meats, fruit and vegetables are on offer. You can then see what you have in the fridge and freezer and plan your recipes in the most economical way possible.