I'm not one for 'getting on Band Waggons' ~ in-fact I have a healthy distrust of many ~ but in early January I joined the discount shopping brigade. I'd just got to a point where I felt that our household bills were way too expensive and we had to take some kind of radical action. We have a 'Blue and Yellow' store about two miles up the road from here. There's a large car park (free) and it's just off the bypass in our local town. If we get off the motorway one junction earlier, we can pop in on our way home. It's not only cheap, it's convenient.
It was easy to see that we were going to save money, but I decided to monitor exactly how much. For the last three months I've logged our savings against a calculated average weekly spend from the Autumn. I've filled pages of my accounts book with everything we've spent (OCD!!!). I've included house-hold items from the 'W' store, "top up shops" from anywhere and the occasional trip to our original food store to pick up special items.
I think our diet has improved in the last few months, largely because fruit and fresh veg were really expensive at our previous store. It is a different type of shopping experience.... but it's funny how quickly I've got used to things costing less!
Anyway, the rolling savings total is already looking extremely healthy. Once I'd added the lower winter fuel bills resulting from our mild winter, the total is bordering on the embarrassing! Why did I continue to pay so much to these other stores for so long...... Mark (who is a great believer in 'designated savings funds') suggested at the beginning of the experiment that we should put the money into a pot for our 50th Birthday celebrations. We are 48 later this year so that's going to be MONTHS of savings. I'm not sure he realises quite how much money that might represent! Oh well..!!
The funny thing is that I can't persuade my family to try out the store. My sister is completely loyal to 'T****' and my parents can't be separated from 'S*********'. In the meanwhile, I'm a complete convert!!!
What are your top food-shopping tips?