Saving on groceries

  • With money being tighter than ever for most families, the grocery budget is one great place to save money. My family saves money by eating mostly fruits and vegetables that are in season. We also combine coupons from the Sunday paper with sales at local grocery stores. There are several places online that will do the work for you. You will be amazed at what you can buy for only pennies or even free! Share your tips for saving money on groceries.

  • Know your stores! Don't be locked in to only going to the same store all the time when you might be able to find better deals elsewhere. It may mean it'll take you longer to shop but eventually you'll know which stores have the best deals on what and you'll cut your time back down.

    Don't be afraid to buy in bulk if you have the cupboard/freezer space to do so. You'll make a higher initial payment but save money over the long term.

    Don't be addicted to brandnames!!!! In all honesty there is, usually, very little reason to buy a brandname when the generic (whether it's Mac 'n Cheese or Tylenol) is sitting right there next to it. Most of the time if you check the label, they are the exact same thing. Sometimes your storebrands, while cheaper, will actually make the healthier alternative as a means of trying to get you to buy their brand since they don't have the name recognition.

    I also freeze things in season for use later. For example, I'll buy a 10lb box of blueberries when they're in season and freeze 9lbs of them for use through the winter instead of paying outrageous prices for a tiny pint in December lol.

  • I agree that online can be a great place to find coupons.  I've received quite a few coupons for free items lately and although they are things I wouldn't buy, they are things that we can use (toaster waffles, hot dogs, etc.)  I also agree that stocking up on sale items for later use is a great idea.  I like to buy my meat in bulk to freeze.  I also look at the ads for all the local grocery stores to see who has the best deal.  I find that it's usually better for me to stick with one store a week.  Usually there is one that has better deals on most items I need, but they usually also have several items for just a little more than their competitor.  I still find that it's better to buy everything in one place rather than use the extra time and gas to go to the other store for a handful of items.

    Also, when it comes to baby items I usually hold on to the coupon until there is a sale.  Then with things like diapers I buy a variety of sizes so that I know they won't be wasted.  I've also gotten some coupons for free bottles, money off pacifiers, nursing pads, formula checks, etc.  If you get checks for a brand of formula you don't use, it's a good idea to try to trade them for some that you will use.  I also like to take advantage of the stores that do double coupons.  Sometimes it's worth the trip to those stores just to receive that extra bit of savings.

  • Warehouse stores like Costco and BJ's are great for saving money on diapers, formula and baby food. Our local BJ's is only five minutes away and is a lifesaver! Cheese, milk, cereal, bread, pull-ups, chicken nuggets ... the price difference is well worth the annual fee. Plus, the monthly coupons you get are often big money-savers on essential products.

  • I was wondering what site are you going to, to recieve these coupons. I hate to go to sites where they take you through (offers to qualify for free things). I am disabled and really use coupons alot.

  • To find great deals I always used couponmom.com and grocerygame.com.

  • I use to never use coupons. Every time I would try I would find a store brand item cheaper than the name brand was after coupon. But about a year ago I stumbled on some blogs by SAHM who breakdown the best deals by store with easy to understand coupon matchups.

    Now I pay pennies on the dollar for many name brand products, sometimes even "getting paid" to buy them. I've gone from thinking 2/$5 deals on cereal was great to refusing to pay more than 75-cents for a box of Kelloggs or General Mills Cereal, and I can't even remember the last time I paid for toothpaste or toothbrushes

    A few of the blogs I like are: CommonSenseWithMoney, MoneySavingMom & SurvivingTheStores. These are completely free blogs that require no sign ups to read.

     

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    There is also a site called HotCouponWorld that is free, it is a bit more confusing but will show deals at various stores further in advance than the SAHM bloggers do. The hotcouponworld site can be viewed without any sign-up, the only reason to sign up is if you want to post comments on the message boards, or if you decide to join in their free coupon trading program.

    One of the best features of the above site is what they call the coupon database where you can type the name of any product and it will show you all the coupons it knows of out there and where they were found. Whether it was a peelie on the product in a store, an internet printable or in a Sunday Paper. It has allowed me to save much time in searching for non-existent coupons, I've even got to the point that I don't even cut most coupons until I need them as it tells me exactly which weeks paper it was printed in.

     

  • One last site is called FreeStuffTimes that lists all kinds of freebies you can sign up to have sent to you. Lots of times its junk but then there are the occasional gems. This site is also completely free and requires no sign up.

    An example of a recent great find was yesterday when they posted a link to a Fischer Price website that you can request a Free DVD with 4 episodes of a cartoon featuring the GeoTrax characters. My son has the GeoTrax trains and LOVES these mini-cartoons.

    I've also received free trial size deodorants, toothpaste, shampoo and even brand new razors like the Schick Quattro Titanium Trimmer Razor that retails for around $10, all for free.

    I would suggest though that on any of the sign-ups for free stuff that you give them an e-mail address you have set up just for this purpose. Most do not generate future junk mail from the manufacturers but some occasionally do.

    Actually the other blogs I mentioned usually post these same free offers, but they usually don't post them as quickly as on Freestufftimes and occasionally that makes the difference between getting the item and being told by the manufacturer that they already ran out of items to send.