All of this fresh produce seen here cost me exactly $9.87. I bought it at my local 99 cents store. Really. The cost for these exact items at Albertsons would be approximately $28.00. No joke. I have been doing quite a bit of cost comparison shopping lately, because we have to survive on a tighter budget...and it is changing my life! Seriously! In the last 3 weeks, I have saved my family $300.00 in grocery costs by purchasing certain items from the 99 cents store.
Here is how I did it:
David took me into the 99 cents store and I started making a list in my iPhone of things I WOULD POSSIBLY buy. I went up and down every single aisle and made a list.
Some things I took off of my first list.
More things have been added to my first list.
Here is my list:
Baby shampoo, vaseline, Q-tips, cotton balls, hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol, shampoo and conditioner for David (most guys don't need the fancy stuff, plus they have a huge variety of wonderful scents), Pepto-Bismol, Nyquil, Comet, Palmolive, tortillas, spices (they have ALL varieties), salt, pepper, dressing, Kraft mayo, cans of tuna, beans, Campbell's soups, crackers, chips, candy (bars and bags), cookies, lettuce, bags of onions, garlic, bags of potatoes, shredded carrots, frozen corn and peas, italian squash, tomatoes, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, oranges, green bell peppers, red bell peppers, jalapenos, mushrooms, celery, cans of kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans, white beans, pasta, Shasta soda, Gatorade, bleach, plastic tableware, band-aids, and spinach. The only thing I may take off the list are baby wipes. They come 80 to a pack for 99 cents but they are not the best quality. Actually, the quality is fine, but they do not pop up automatically and this drives me insane. I have found that the pink packaged Care Bear brand wipes are the best of the bunch though. And that change alone has saved $10 compared to the wipes I buy from CostCo.
I then went to CostCo and Albertsons and now have three lists, one for each store, of things we buy from each place. It is so much easier and healthier for my family to plan meals now. I use Costco for the big stuff-chicken, steak, salmon, diapers, dog food, etc. And I still go to Target and Albertsons occasionally for the specialty stuff.
But a quick trip to the 99 cents store is also easy because it is never too crowded and the check-out lines are very fast. Plus, I only need Kindergarten math to figure my total, count each item and that is how much I will spend! Here is wishing you Happy Shopping!