5 Grocery Shopping Tips

Grocery shopping seemed so much more fun when we were younger. Our parents would stroll the isles crossing off what they needed as we sneakily threw cookies, candy, and Lunchables into the cart. Shopping seemed like such a breeze back then, but once we were finally on our own, we realized it wasn’t such a walk in the park.

Fast forward to your first year of college. Remember your first grocery trip alone? Don’t be ashamed to admit when you arrived home you had enough frozen pizzas to feed a small army and a bunch of other junk food you don’t remember tossing in the cart (we’ve all been there). Even though you dread going every week, follow these simple steps to ensure a more pleasant (and cost effective) shopping experience.

1. Make a list 
Writing a grocery list makes it so much easier to get in and get out of the store in a timely manner. By checking your refrigerator and making note of things you need, you will save yourself the trouble later on if you get home and realize you forgot something. Making a list will also help you by ensuring you don't purchase impulsively.

2. Plan meals 
Before you make a trip to the store, spend some time researching new meal ideas to eat during the day or for dinner. Pinterest always has great suggestions when it comes to healthy snacks, and it’s always fun to try a new recipe.

3. Take advantage of BOGO 
What’s more exciting than your favorite food? Getting two of your favorite food for the price of one! BOGO deals can be helpful when shopping on a budget, so make sure to keep an eye out for them around the store. They can also be helpful when it comes to cutting down how often you go to the store because you'll get what you need in one trip.

4. Check grocery story ads 
Sometimes you’d be surprised what you find in grocery store ads. Stores like Target often offer coupons of $10-off certain purchases. You can also find other useful things, such as recipes.

5. Don’t go shopping on an empty stomach 
If you’ve ever gone grocery shopping on an empty stomach, your total is usually a lot higher than normal. You can’t resist all the tasty looking items thanks to your rumbling stomach, so you (naturally) buy everything. This problem can be avoided by simply eating before you go to a place where you know you'll be surrounded completely by food.

By following these five steps you can turn your grocery trip from drab to fab in no time. Happy shopping!