Polycart | Visual Hunt

16 Hacks To Save Money And Sanity While Grocery Shopping

Diply 23 Mar 2018

I hate grocery shopping. The stores are crowded and designed to make you spend more money than you have.

I do my best to get in, get what I need, and get out as quickly as possible and with minimal human interaction. But I'm always looking for ways to make the whole chore less painful.

1. When you don't need a lot, skip the cart and grab a basket.

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Many people default to a cart regardless of the length of their list, but a basket forces you to stick to it.And you'll shop faster, if only to not have to carry it once it gets heavy.

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2. Avoid shopping on the weekend. 

Flickr | Christopher Blizzard

If you can fit it into your schedule, hit the shops on Monday or Tuesday. They'll be less crowded and you'll be able to get it all done much faster. The aisles will be clear of carts and the lines at the checkout will be shorter.

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3. Make a list!

Instagram | @coachjesslewis

It seems simple, but making a list and sticking to it can have a huge impact on your final receipt. If you struggle to make one all at once, use a whiteboard to add things as you run out and snap a pic on your way out the door.

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4. Even better: Create a weekly meal plan. 

Sublime Reflection | Sublime Reflection

By planning ahead, you can make sure you're only buying what you will actually need for the week and can better utilize your pantry and freezer.

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5. Don't fight for a spot close to the store.

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Instead, aim for a space farther back and near a cart corral. Sure, you'll walk a bit farther, but you'll be able to put your cart away quickly and avoid the most traffic as you leave.

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6. Make smart use of your freezer. 

Instagram | @kelleb_llc

Buy expensive staples like butter or meat in bulk when they're on sale and freeze them. You can even cook some before freezing and save money on convenience items like pre-cooked and sliced chicken.

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7. Shop from the highest and lowest shelves. 

Instagram | @photos.honey

Most stores place the higher cost items on the center shelves, so don't forget to look up and down to see if you can get something just as good for cheaper.

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8. Unsurprisingly, there are a lot of hacks trying to solve the problem of multiple trips to the car.

Princess Pinky Girl | Princess Pinky Girl

I like this one that uses laundry baskets. Some grocery stores even sell similar baskets that you can shop with, skipping the bags entirely.

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9. Buy fruits and vegetables locally and when they're in season.

Instagram | @crueltyfreechika

Seasonal produce doesn't need to be shipped thousands of miles, meaning travel and preservation aren't included in the price. Plus, it'll taste better.

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10. Save space in the cart by hanging cases of pop along the sides. 

Reddit | Braincain007

You'll have more room for other groceries and won't have to bend down into the cart to lift the heavy pop.

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11. A padded carabiner can be used to cut down on the number of trips required to bring the groceries inside. 

Reddit | nothingcorporate

Then all you're limited to is how much weight you can carry in one go.

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12. Don't have a carabiner handy? A spare bag can help.

Reddit | AlexFreire

Collect all the handles together and thread the empty bag through them. Then just tie the ends of the bag together to create a handle.

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13. Leave the kids at home if you can. 

Instagram | @its.me.vero_

We love our kids, but they're terrible shopping companions. Not only will you avoid the costs and arguments caused by their unending requests, but the whole trip will be much faster.

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14. Always read the unit prices.

Consumer Credit | Consumer Credit

You may think that the bulk size is cheaper, but it may not be. Regardless of what the sticker price is, the small print is where you'll find out if you're being scammed or not.

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15. Stop paying the "convenience tax" on pre-cooked, pre-cut, pre-marinaded foods. 

Instagram | @lauraegrillo

If your goal is to save money, buying that bag of shredded carrots isn't helping. Unless you're in a rush, do your own prep at home.

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16. Only enter the aisles you actually need to buy things from.

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If you only need garbage bags and ketchup, why are you wandering down the cereal aisle? This just results in impulse buying.

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