Just over 6 weeks ago, I shared my frustration about the enormous amount of money I’ve been spending on groceries. Judging by the responses to the post, it seems that I am not the only one who’s feeling the crunch and looking for ways to save and get the most value out of our money – including other bloggers like Zoe from Born Geek and Natalija from Frugal in SA.
Since then I’ve been very conscious about my spending on groceries and Kurt and I have made a few changes, especially with regard to our meals in the evening – which is probably the meal we spend the most on. Previously, we would just decide on the day what we felt like eating that evening and cook that. On occasion, we were also very indecisive and ended up getting Nando’s or other take-aways, which is not that cheap to feed a family of four.
I can’t say exactly how much we’ve saved just yet, but there have been some notable differences after making these few changes:
1.We have a 5-week Dinner Meal plan
Kurt is the chef in our house, so I asked him to draw up a dinner meal plan for the 4 of us. Besides saving money, this has already made such a difference in our lives:
- We no longer have the daily debate of “What’s for dinner“
- It makes drawing up a shopping list so much easier. At the beginning of the month, I can purchase all the perishable goods required for the meals and take advantage of some of the bulk deals in store and weekly I buy the fresh goods.
- It’s drawn up in a way that we don’t eat the same thing every day (we sometimes used to eat chicken 5 days out of the week)
2. Less Take-out
As another consequence of the menu-plan, we hardly had any take-out meals this past month. We knew what was for dinner, all the ingredients were available and there was no reason to buy more food. In fact, Kurt added a few days whereby we buy take-out and it’s more of a treat now!
3.Using Snap n’Save
I’ve had the Snap n’Save app downloaded on my phone for a while, but never really used it. When a colleague of mine told me that she has over R400 in her virtual wallet for savings from the app, I thought I’d give it a try. There are some really good deals on the app and it works in the form of cash back to your virtual wallet in the app. Each week there are new deals loaded whereby you can book the deals and go to any major retailer and buy the items you’ve booked. Once you have your till slip, snap a photo of your till slip and the cash will be loaded to your wallet.
4.Looking at Specials and Buying in Bulk
I’ve been more cognisant of specials and deals – especially for things like toilet paper, long life milk and frozen foods, basically things that can be kept for a long time. Snap’nSave also comes in handy with these kinds of deals. For example, this weekend I got R29 cashback for a pack of toilet paper which cost R49 in store.
I also noticed just how some of the stores prices vary on certain items, which is just ridiculous. For example, a pack of nappies at one store cost R229 and R299 at another. Neither was on a “special” – this was the normal price. This is a big difference to me!
5.We are yet to try Online Shopping For Groceries
This is something I’ve been thinking and talking about for a long time, but haven’t really tried. It boils down to timing I think. If you order today, when will the food arrive? Woolworths online store says items ordered today will arrive the next day. With Pick n’ Pay online, you have to select an available time-slot for delivery in your area and the price depends on the time slot. This timing has always been a deterrent for me, but after spending more than 30 minutes in a queue at a store this past weekend, I’m so ready to give the online shopping a try!
Although these things are helping me save – the proof is in the pudding! I’m going to start looking at the numbers and see what weve been saving in monetary terms.
Have you made any changes in your shopping patterns to save some bucks? I would love to hear!