Groceries. Everyone loves to shop for them and pay for them, right? Well not me! Not only do I dread the weekly shopping trip, the price tag that goes along with it is even worse. How can I spend $100, $200, or even $300 on something that I am just going to consume and it is gone? It’s a concept I haven’t fully been able to accept yet. That’s why I am motivated to find new ways to save money at the store. Below you will find 5 ways I save money on my weekly shopping trip.

  1. Meal Plan

One thing I learned right away was that if I didn’t plan meals out in advance, I spent more on groceries. Not only that, it usually came down to me deciding after work. I would come home with the baby in tow, and my husband still at work, and have to figure out what to eat, defrost meat, and prepare the whole meal. This was so stressful! Now I plan my meals out on Fridays, then I grocery shop for ingredients for those meals. This has probably saved me between $50 and $100 EACH shopping trip.

  1. Price Match

After I know what meals I am making, I sit down with the ads and see what’s on sale. This doesn’t take me more than 5-10 minutes, and can save me a good deal of money. Sometimes it also sparks meal ideas (am I the only one who has trouble coming up with meals??). If I see something that has a really good price, I will also stock up on it. For example, if cereal is on sale for a really great price I will buy several boxes and store them, since I know we go through cereal fast.

I make a list of the items, the place they are on sale, and the price, and put them at the top of my shopping list. I usually shop at Walmart, so I can price match for all the stores. This saves me money but giving me the sales price, but I don’t have to drive around to several different stores. Check your stores price match policy to see what they allow.

  1. Coupons

Coupons get a terrible rap sometimes because so many people take it to the extreme. Coupons can save you a good chunk of change though, and it doesn’t have to be anything too crazy. I flip through the coupon pages after I have my grocery list made, and this helps me stick to buying what I only need. One trap people fall into is buying things just because they have a coupon for it. This can actually cost you MORE money, so be sure not to do this! Another thing to consider is if you normally buy the store brand. It may be more expensive to buy the name brand with a coupon than to buy the store brand like you usually do. Always keep your eyes open as you are shopping as well. Sometimes they have stickers on the actually items, so you can save money by peeling the sticker off and handing it to the cashier.

  1. Ibotta

The new app I am loving right now is called ibotta. It is basically a digital coupon app. You can flip through it before or after your shopping trip, which makes it very convenient. You can also use it along with other coupons or discounts. The thing that makes this app even better though is that is often has cash back for “any brand” items. For example, it may have “any brand milk” listed. This means you can buy the store brand generic milk and still get cash back!

Sign up with Ibotta to see how much you can save! {affiliate link} You will get $10 when you use the app for the first time. Once you are signed up, you can invite your friends and get $5 for each one that joins and redeems their first rebate! How cool is that?

  1. Shopkick

This one really isn’t as much money saving as it is money earning. This in an app you download on your phone, then you get points for shopping. When you walk into the store, you open the app and it gives you what they call kicks. Then you can scan items as you shop and you earn more kicks. If you purchase something on their list, or if you link your card to them, you can earn even more kicks. You can redeem these kicks for giftcards. I have only used the walk in and scan kicks, so I can’t attest to the purchases part. I love that you can get gift cards for simply going into a store! There is a certain limit to how many times you can use it in a week or month, and you can only get walk in kicks once per day, but I still think it’s a great way to easily make a few bucks.

To sign up and earn bonus kicks, click here. {affiliate link} Then, invite your friends and earn extra kicks!

These are 5 easy things I do every week when completing my grocery shopping. It always takes me less than an hour to do this, and it saves me a great deal of time. Give it a try and let me know what you think! I’d also love to hear what other people are doing to save money on their groceries, so feel free to leave a comment below.