Tips For Saving Money on Groceries: Go Grocery Shopping Alone

Written by Bunga

lost and found
health grocery list
Image by postbear
yesterday after work i did some grocery shopping, hitting three different stores for their sales since i’m a cheap bastard. at the third store i was in line behind a woman who had very few items to buy, but the guy in front of her was buying one of everything. he also had a screwy debit card with a defective chip, something he admitted to the cashier after she rang up all of his items. when the card failed, he pitched a little hissy fit, as if she were to blame, then stomped out of the market leaving all of his groceries on the belt. the woman ahead of me paid and left, so i asked a guy who’d just unloaded his groceries if i could have his basket, and as the cashier was ringing me up, i collected his food up and then handed her the basket. while all this was going on another cashier came over to yell at my clerk for no good reason, and after paying, bagging my stuff and cleaning up the jerk’s mess, i left my wallet behind. no good deed goes unpunished, and all that.

this, of course, i didn’t notice until i was going to bed, and by that time it was 3:30. i checked everywhere in the apartment, then walked the route i’d come home along, seeing nothing. after cancelling my cards and making a list of the things i’d have to replace, i went to bed, having to get back up three hours later to return to the store when it opened, hoping that it might have been returned. at 8:30 i walked back, and the two clerks on duty had seen nothing and one of them had just come from the office, stating there were no found wallets there. i was resigned to losing the cash anyway, only about 5.00, but wanted my health and library cards and a few other pieces of i.d. that would just be time-consuming to replace. i left the head cashier my number, put a reward poster up on the bulletin board, then went home to get another 45 minutes of sleep before work.

the phone rang twenty minutes after i went back to bed, and the head cashier had found my wallet in a cash drawer. all the cards were inside, and the money as well. she waved away the money i offered, but i’m going back to find the clerk who put it away for me.

i don’t like humans very much, but these people have earned you a reprieve the next time i have my hands around your collective throat.

Although it isn’t always possible to go grocery shopping alone, you should try to do so as often as you can for the following reasons:

1.  You can get through the store faster.

Generally speaking, having other people with you will slow you down, especially if they are younger children who are unable to help you shop.

2.  You won’t have someone else distracting you.

 If you’re at the store by yourself, you can concentrate better especially when trying to calculate unit price, match up coupons with sales, etc. You may also be less likely to forget things if you don’t have someone distracting you.

3.  It will be easier to stick to your list since you won’t have someone else asking for treats or randomly throwing items into the cart. Some family members are more devious or demanding than others, but we’ve probably all had times when we ended up with a “few surprises” in our carts at the check out stand. Going to the store by yourself eliminates this problem!

4. Especially if you are a stay-at-home mom with younger children, time alone at the grocery store can actually be a break for you. Going grocery shopping alone can actually be a nice change of pace for a stay-at-home mom. This break can enable you to be a better mom once you get back home.

5. You won’t have to deal with the bad mood or demands of others. It is hard to grocery shop with a cranky child or baby who is perhaps missing a nap, or with a child who asks for numerous items during the shopping trip and then whines when you say no. You don’t have to worry about that when you’re by yourself!

6.  You can stop more easily to do other errands or enjoy special treats along the way. In general, you can get more done faster when you go to the grocery store without others with you, and you may find that grocery shopping alone provides you with a good opportunity to run a few other errands, or take advantage of some time alone to get together for a quick cup of coffee with a friend.

All in all, grocery shopping alone is a great way to save time, money, and sanity! 

BONUS TIP: One of the best ways to save money on groceries is to use a system such as The Grocery Game or Coupon Mom.

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