Americans spend an average of $5,174 a year, or roughly $431 a month, on groceries, according to the latest spending data available Esri. Living in Southern California, where the cost of living is higher than many other parts of the country, this amount is likely to be even higher.
While saving coupons can be one way to save money, many people end up finding themselves with a drawer full of expired coupons that they intended to use but never did.
To help you save money on groceries, we've compiled a list of tools and strategies that you can use the next time you head to the market.
Sign up for the loyalty/rewards program
Most grocery stores offer loyalty programs that are free to join. By enrolling, you can benefit from member-only discounts that automatically deduct at the register. Ralphs, Vons, and Albertsons are a few grocery chains that offer rewards programs.
Use a rebate app
Rebate apps such as Ibotta and Rakuten give you cash back when you buy groceries. They are free to use; however, you may need to link a rewards/loyalty card or submit receipts to receive rebates.
Be careful about buying in bulk
Wholesale clubs can be a great way to save money because you're able to buy more for less. But if the quantity that you purchase is more than you'll use, it may be less expensive for you to purchase a smaller quantity with a higher unit cost.
Don’t shop for everything at the same place
You may find yourself going to the same store for all your food items out of habit or convenience. But you can save a lot of money by selecting specific stores for your different grocery needs.
Here are some examples:
Organic: Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods with an Amazon Prime membership
Bulk items: Costco and Sam’s Club
Discount deals: Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only
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CalCom's Checking Accounts provides thousands of local discounts, including groceries, through the BaZing mobile app.