Do full-price items make it into your grocery cart? : The Grocery Game Challenge #3 Mar 17-23, 2014

full price grocery shoppingYOU ACCEPT PRICES OR YOU DON’T

 

Grocery shopping for full-price items makes us cringe but the reality is in some cases you either accept the price or you don’t buy it.

At the end of the day it’s either you can afford it or you can’t. If you can’t you don’t buy it and find a cheaper alternative or knock it on the head altogether, if you can.

Should I or shouldn’t I?

Sometimes when I see people staring at a product in their hand I wonder what they are thinking to themselves.

Let’s face it we all talk to ourselves when we grocery shop, admit it.

Is this good for me? What are the ingredients? How many calories? What does it cost? Or should I buy it or not?

I often think questioning purchase price is the burning question in shoppers minds when they are holding products with a confused look on their faces. Who knows?

Many times we convince ourselves that we will find it cheaper even if we have rumbled through the sale flyers for the week.

We know that it might mean going from shop to shop looking for an item on sale. One product that we go through lots is cheese and without coupons it’s hit or miss with the cheese sales.

Mind you they do come out often but when they do it’s time to stock up otherwise face paying outrageous prices for a 500g bar of cheese.

Who pays $8.99 for a block of cheese that goes on sale for $4.77? The customers that don’t stockpile or simply are out of the product and need it for whatever reason, that’s who.

 

Full-price shopping

 

An example of full-price shopping we did would be a bottle of Tylenol we bought once. We needed to get Tylenol and the prices were astronomical. It was one of those times you wished you had a coupon for medications.

Funny enough we used to always have loads of coupons for pain killers but since we can’t order from SC Johnson any longer we haven’t really went online to look.

We are not big fans of printable coupons as we tend to get hassled more often than we use them. So we just forget about them.

If and when more retailers find a way to combat those people who are cheating the system with printable coupons we may change our minds.

We also don’t like those fancy install coupon printers for our computer for every bloody company out there. There has to be an easier way, plus ink costs money.

Who is saving the money now, you or the manufacture when they don’t have to pay to print thousands up thousands of coupons?

Anyhow, back to the Tylenol.  We needed it no matter what so whether we paid full-price or found it on sale it would make its way into our shopping cart.

Unless you want to waste time looking for a cheaper price you may have to do like us and pay full-price for the product or you do without. The problem is there are products out there that we can’t do without and many of them never go on sale meaning we pay full-price for them.

I know there are times when we pay full-price for an item like the Tylenol and a month later or even a week later a coupon comes out but there’s nothing you can do but grin and bear it.

Coupons are great for reducing your grocery budget as is using flyers to make a grocery list but when it comes to specific items having to pay full-price is the only way if you want the item. Another example we talked about last week were people who grocery shop in a rush and pay full-price for items.

Those grocery shoppers get what they shop for and nothing more. They are the grocery shoppers that these places rely on with full-price costing to balance out those getting the sales or the lost leader products that they sell just to get you through the door.

 

Suppliers have a say

 

Even now suppliers are fighting back saying they don’t want the grocery stores advertising their products as loss leaders just to grab customers.

Putting a strict product price on items may be in the future for some items and I certainly can see a war happening either between the grocery stores and the manufacturers or between grocery stores in general.

Either way they are fighting for top spot and for the customer’s attention. They know that if they put the right items on sale that you will shop with them which means all those full-price (I call them over-priced) items you will buy because you are already there.

Let’s face it, many families don’t have time to run from shop to shop looking for deals. Sure you can price match but only at select stores.

Our favourite grocery stores aren’t always the stores we like to price match in. To be honest we don’t really find Wal-mart to be any cheaper than other shops with various products so it’s all hit or miss. Whether you decide to pay full-price for an item or just wait it out is up to you.

If you have company coming over for dinner tonight last-minute and need to run out to pick up some groceries will you be fussy about whether you are paying full-price for snack items and other grocery items? Most often people just put the items in their cart, get in and get out.

They have the planning head going on and making sure that their guests are comfortable and have all the food and drink they need is priority. Mind you, if you plan a dinner party this could be much different.

The point of this post is there are times when we have to either pay full-price for products or we simply do without or go hunting around for the best current price for that week.

You never know what stores don’t advertise in the flyers but you also don’t want to waste your time and gas running around on hope.

Do you pay full-price for items sometimes? Why?

 

March grocery game challenge posts

 

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you.

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

Ultimate grocery shopping guide

 

Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is below with new information added monthly.

If you missed a Grocery Game Challenge post some of the most popular posts are listed below or you can now find the posts listed on their own page called The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email and let me know.

 

Food food and more food

 

shopping-cart

No Frills

  • Strawberries 1lb x 2 Sale $1.44 each
  • Bananas Sale $0.57 lb. x 2 lbs
  • Cantelope Sale $1.47
  • Vlassic pickles Sale $1.88 x2
  • Cucumber PM Freshco $0.69

Total out-of-pocket $9.94

Food Basics

  • Scotties tissue Sale $3.88
  • Cheese bars Old x 3 Mozzarella x3 Sale $4.44

Total out-of-pocket $30.52

Shoppers Drug Mart

  • 3 x Sealtest Milk 4L $3.97 each
  • 1 x dozen white eggs sale $1.99

Total out-of-pocket $ 13.90

 

Grocery shop results

 

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $240 per year or $20 per month.)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with potentially one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget for March $235.00
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
  • Total Coupons Used to date: $24.50
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Discounts Used to date: $5.54
  • Total Gift Cards Used to date: $33.18
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used to date: $0
  • Stockpile Budget ($20.00): $17.94 (chickpeas dry) + $2.06 (beef) =$20.00
  • Stockpile Budget Used to Date: $20.00+$19.08+$17.94+ $2.06+
  • Total Spent This Week: $54.36
  • Total Spent So Far March: $27.69+ $69.33+$54.36=$151.38
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month: $
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $235.00-$151.38=$83.62
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $242.66+ Feb $191.74+ March $
  • Weekly Overview: We didn’t need too much this week as we are still working our way down the freezer. We might look into investing in 2 medium-sized freezers to get rid of the large one we have now before we renovate. The reason is that it is so large that we would never get it up the basement stairs after renovations. It’s best to have smaller ones that we can manoeuver up and down without taking out walls.

 

Coupon Sleuth

 

Did you find any coupons? If so share the details in the comment section of this post where you found it and what the coupon is for with expiry.

GGC coupons March 2014

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week and your weekly Checkout 51 offers from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your grocery budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created to not only show you that we are like everyone else but to bring us all together to work as a team to get our budgets on track.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2014 get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

Feel free to read all the above posts that I linked to above which I feel are relevant to learning about the grocery budget and grocery shopping in general.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada 2014!

-Mr.CBB

 

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Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

Pet peeves at the grocery store : The Grocery Game Challenge #1 Mar 3-9, 2014

dairy section grocery storeNOTHING BOTHERS ME MORE THAN…

 

Some of the biggest pet peeves at the grocery store are what motivate people to get in and get out.

I don’t know about you but my pet peeves can vary depending on the time of day to the day of the week that I go grocery shopping.

While I was writing this I decided to put together a list of pet peeves that really get under my skin at the grocery store.

They say not to sweat the small stuff and I really am a laid back kind of guy but there are some things that just make me shake my head.

There are things that get under my skin but I don’t really show how it affects me because it doesn’t benefit anyone but me.

That never solves the problem but deep inside I just wish things would be different. Back to the saying, ‘not everyone or everything is perfect’ and ‘go with the flow’.

 

Pet peeves

 

Not everyone will find my pet peeves bothersome but to be honest, they shouldn’t.

They are my pet peeves and since we are all different I bet your pet peeves will be different from mine.

I won’t be surprised if some of us share common pet peeves but for the most part not everyone wants to pull their hair out because the wrong label and price is on a bunker full of product.

Yes, that’s a pet peeve of mine. Just one of them.

What is the meaning of pet peeve? It’s not when you are peeved off at your pet either. It’s simply something that irritates you to the point where when it happens it bothers you.

Here are a few of my pet peeves that I came up with this morning on my list.

 

Miserable staff

 

I know it may only be a job in a supermarket and not the career you once hoped for but you really do get some miserable depressing people at the check out. Not everyone is like this I’ll admit and everyone is entitled to a bad day now and again but sometimes a smile is all you need.

Happier staff tend to lead to happier customers, it can generate a more positive ambient environment. I’ve also found that the happier the staff are the more willing they are to help you out. They are much more approachable too, why would you want to disturb an unhappy person?

 

Sales

 

When those sales come around it’s time to stock up, or so you think. There are plenty of occasions when you go to the supermarket because they have a sale on (for this instance, fish).

You know it’s a great deal and there is no fine print in the flyer that states “while quantities last” so you head out to go and hunt down some deals.

The problem is, the fish is all gone and they are not getting anymore in and you can’t get a rain check because it’s a one-off “special size“.

That’s almost as annoying as the “one day sale” when you’ve got other things planned and cannot possibly make it in time to take advantage of the deal in question.

I’m not sure if it’s a marketing ploy, but it they only have a limited amount of stock then they should say so. It’s almost verging on the bait and switch tactic that is illegal in Canada.

The ridiculously small special offers that sometimes appear in the flyers aren’t quite as good as you think they are. Watch the sizes compared to the normal regular size and compare the prices per unit, e.g. cost per 100g. You’ll soon notice the sales aren’t as good as you first thought.

 

Irregularity of choice

 

Even though there is a huge choice of pre-made processed foods available in every supermarket the range of fresher foods including fruit, vegetables., meats and cheeses can sometimes suffer from place to place.

You can tell when there is a distinct lack of choice when all you get offered is the large name brands, which tend to be highly processed.

The stock changes from one branch of supermarket to another depending on the local demographic. There is definitely a greater selection of Asian foods at one supermarket close to where we live, but the other branch of the same supermarket doesn’t have anywhere near the same lines of products.

It’s not a complete disaster, just annoying that they think that customers basic essential food items should be based on jarred, tinned and other highly preserved products.

In the end no one supermarket is going to be your only place to shop. There will always be excuses to venture out to the next place and experience something different or find something strange and unusual.

What are some of your pet peeves at the grocery store?

 

March grocery game challenge posts

 

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you.

Since it’s the start of a new grocery game month we have a winner for February! I made a few adjustments to the last few posts I moderated for ballot numbers as I mixed the month up this morning. Instead of going back to change all the posts I made the adjustments in my book. No worries, it was all sorted out. Easy. :) Always track your own ballot numbers.

Congratulations goes out to Lynaka ballot #11! Please email me with your address.

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

Ultimate grocery shopping guide

 

Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is below with new information added monthly.

If you missed a Grocery Game Challenge post some of the most popular posts are listed below or you can now find the posts listed on their own page called The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email and let me know.

 

Food food and more food

 

shopping-cart

No Frills

  • x 2 Mushrooms 227g Sale $0.88
  • Romain lettuce $1.49
  • Roma tomatoes Sale $0.88lb  $1.76
  • Eggs 18 pack $2.88
  • Green spring onions $0.88 for 2
  • Potatoes 10lb $1.88

Total out of pocket $10.65

Food Basics

  • Celery Sale $0.88
  • Chick Peas Dry 1kg Sale $2.99 x 6 (stockpile budget)
  • Oranges $0.88lb x 5lbs $4.40
  • Pineapple Sale $1.88
  • x3 Iogo Yogurt sale $1.99-$0.75 -$1.24

Total out of pocket $10.88  with $17.94 to stockpile budget

Shoppers Drugmart

  •  2 x 4L bags of milk $3.97 each

Total out of pocket $ 7.94

 

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2820

 

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $240 per year or $20 per month.)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with potentially one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget for March $235.00
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $2.25
  • Total Coupons Used to date: $24.50
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Discounts Used to date: $5.54
  • Total Gift Cards Used to date: $33.18
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used to date: $0
  • Stockpile Budget ($20.00): $17.94 (chickpeas dry)
  • Stockpile Budget Used to Date: $20.00+$19.08+$17.94
  • Total Spent This Week: $29.47
  • Total Spent So Far March: $27.69
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month: $
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $235.00-$29.47=$205.53
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $242.66+ Feb $191.74+ March $
  • Weekly Overview: Some great deals this week but we didn’t need much as we have plenty in the house this week.

 

Canadian Coupons Found

 

coupons-March-2014-Canada

Did you find any coupons? If so share the details in the comment section of this post where you found it and what the coupon is for with expiry.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week and your weekly Checkout 51 offers from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your grocery budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created to not only show you that we are like everyone else but to bring us all together to work as a team to get our budgets on track.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2014 get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

Feel free to read all the above posts that I linked to above which I feel are relevant to learning about the grocery budget and grocery shopping in general.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada 2014!

-Mr.CBB

Money-quote

Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

How to survive a winter storm with no power

broken-tree-branchesMAKING IT THROUGH THE STORM

 

While the ice storm that we had this week in Ontario created quite a sight to see, sparkling trees covered in glistening ice and an ice covering over everything, this Winter Wonderland also came with a lot of destruction, inconveniences for many and sadly a couple of deaths.

With hundreds of thousands of people losing their power there are still a number of people who are waiting for theirs to come back on, 48 hours or more after the storm while others enjoyed Christmas Day in the warmth of their homes.

Being prepared for an extended power outage can make getting through those long, cold days less of a struggle. The recent cold snap hasn’t helped the situation.

 

Staying Warm

 

Having no power means no heat in your home. Staying warm will be a challenge if you are not prepared. We had a little notice that this storm was coming and I have to admit I was not as prepared as I could have been.

Beyond having lots of blankets and warm sweaters to put on, seeking out warming stations that many cities provided would have been an option if our power had stayed off for more than the 3 hours it was off.

These warming stations provide you with not only a place to escape the cold but most also offered some hot beverages to warm you up.

 

Generators

 

If you own a generator or choose to purchase one remember that anything that burns fuel should have adequate ventilation.

Using a barbecue indoors to stay warm, whether it is a propane barbecue or charcoal is not a good idea.

When you are trying to keep your house warm you are unlikely to open any windows and therefore your home is likely sealed air tight.

Burning propane or a gas-powered generator inside your home or even your garage will give off carbon monoxide and being in an air sealed home it will eat up all the oxygen in your home.

Remember carbon monoxide is a silent killer, being odourless unless you have a carbon monoxide detector you will not know it is in your home.

Carbon monoxide detectors also will not work if the power is out unless they have a back up battery which will only work as long the battery has a charge.

 

Car

 

In preparation for a storm where the power may go off, having a full tank of gas in your car may be of great benefit to you. It may not be the most economical approach but sitting in your car (not inside a garage) may be an option to seek out some warmth.

Your car can also be used to charge a cell phone if you own a car charger. Being able to get updates as to the progression of the storm or when your power is expected to be back on is valuable information to have.

Having little or no gas in your vehicle won’t get you very far as if the power is out gas stations will likely have no power either.

 

Food

 

A major concern for people when their power goes out is how are they going to keep all the food in their fridge and freezer from going bad.

Keeping your fridge and freezer closed as much as possible will help to keep your food cold but also know that the contents in a full freezer will stay frozen for approximately 48 hours and a half full freezer for approximately 24 hours.

During a winter storm moving your food to your garage or on a balcony in baskets, boxes or whatever you chose to put it in is an option.

There was no shortage of ice around during this latest storm so collecting some ice from outside and packing it in your freezer and fridge would also help to keep your food from spoiling.

 

Neighbours

 

The elderly may not be able to deal with a power outage very well so do your elderly neighbours a favour and check in to make sure that they are okay. 2013 brought on two major power outages and from both I learned that even though I live next door to my neighbours we are on separate power grids.

I lost power for 3 hours this past week where as both my neighbours lost power for well over 24 hours.

This may happen in your area as well so check in with your neighbours to see if they have power or if you have power and they don’t, offer them into your home for warmth or to use your outlets to charge a cell phone.

Though it may not feel like you are in Florida, having more people in a room will help to keep a room slightly warmer so get to know your neighbours and help each other out.

 

Water

 

In the winter it is always a good idea to make sure that all outdoor plumbing lines are drained and that the water is turned off.

During a power outage in the winter pipes freezing may be a concern. If you have chosen to leave your home and either stay with a friend, book a hotel room or visit a local warming station consider turning your water off completely to avoid pipes freezing and bursting within your home.

Wrapping any exposed pipes with insulation sleeves may help as well.

 

Damage to your property

 

Ontario-Ice-Storm-2013-fallen-tree

The weight of ice building up on tree branches can cause many branches to break and fall on your home, fence or your car.

Having a good homeowners insurance policy, damage to your home or property caused by a weather event will most likely be covered.

The removal of a tree or branch that has fallen without causing damage will likely be at your expense to have removed.

One thing I experienced myself this past week was large chunks of ice falling off overhead power lines. Luckily the massive piece of ice that fell on my car did not cause any damage but if it had, having a comprehensive car insurance policy my insurance company would have paid to have any damages repaired.

Know what your insurance policy covers and possibly seek out a new one if you feel your current policy is inadequate in these situations.

Surviving and staying warm during a power outage, especially one that may go on for days on end will be a challenge but can be a little easier to manage if you are prepared ahead of time.

Remember you are not alone and working as a team with others around you will make getting through these long, cold days more bearable.

What other tips can you suggest for surviving a power outage?

 

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Related articles

The Grocery Game Challenge #3 Nov 18-24, 2013: Back to basics with more for less

grocery-shop-3-novemberIN-STOCK AND PRICES LOCKED DOWN

Food Basics wants to make sure they are taking good care of their customers and that’s a smart move on their part with new lowered and locked down prices and a new in-stock policy.

Always fresh is the new motto at Food Basics and if you aren’t satisfied they want you to let them know and you will get your money back.

Grocery is a big business so if they want the customers they have to make them happy.

While shopping last night at Food Basics I also noticed that they have new lowered prices and highlight “more for less” all around the store. What I found interesting was the color choice that they used to show us how they have lowered the prices on the products in-store.

If you look carefully you will see that the new locked down tags are a red tag. If you are a coupon fanatic or a deals guru like we have been and still are (although not so much couponing these days) your brain will immediately think “sale” or “reduced product” because those are the colors used by many other stores. In this case it is.

If you head to a PC store such as RCSS or Zehrs you will notice they have the pink stickers and everyone knows that they mean 50% off and in some cases less but for the most part it’s a super deal.

If they turned around and did the same thing as Food Basics and used pink to highlight “more for less” or “locked down” prices  your brain would automatically think, “amazing deal” and potentially you might spend more.

That’s they way I felt when I started to see all these red tags with lowered prices all around Food Basics. To be honest they were a bit distracting to me because it kept me thinking there were rock bottom deals all over the store and my eyes just kept staring at them.

I guess it’s a win-win for the store because they had my attention and focus that’s for sure. The price is essentially locked down meaning it’s the new regular price and not on sale. Is that how you would look at it?

If you are scouring the stores for deals and reduced or blow out products you know the types of mark down stickers and over time they catch your eye. You take note of the colors, the big giant X across a price or the rack with reduced products and make sure you check them out.

new lowered prices food basics 1

Don’t forget that in many shops you can ask for a rain check which we have also discussed here at The Grocery Game yet many people tend to forget about that perk which many stores offer.

Amazing weekly flyer deals at your local grocery store might mean that the shelves are empty if you don’t get to the sale on time. Not all grocery stores get enough stock in for a super sale and run out which means you are out of luck.

Food Basics also has another new policy and for many this is very important including us.

We all hate when a store runs out of product when a huge flyer sale happens and Food Basics is going to make sure that we are kept happy customers.

They have set out an in-stock policy which I will quote below for us.

We will try our hardest to ensure the items advertised in our weekly flyer are always in stock. Bit if one of them isn’t', we will give you a Raincheck + 10% off the advertised price for your next visit.

In most cases you might find the seasoned veterans who use coupons and source out deals and even newbies might end up price matching the sales at a store like No Frills, Freshco or even Wal-mart just to ensure they get the sale price, don’t have to go back for a second trip and so they don’t have to battle the masses of customers who want in on the grocery budget savings.

I’m a fairly frequent customer at Canadian Tire and we also love to go to Sears looking for deals. I know that if you find a lower price at each of these stores you can price match and they will beat it by 10% which is a great way to keep the customers happy.

I can honestly say that I think it’s great that Food Basics has promised us in-stock product, more great deals and locked down prices because in today’s economy not everyone can afford to shop at Sobey’s or Metro with the high prices that we all see.

The only reason they get me through the door is for the Air Miles program and the odd flyer specials that I know I can’t get cheaper anywhere else.

You’d be a fool to spend more money in your grocery budget than you had to IF you had the opportunity to shop at a store with the exact same product for less. I realize that not everyone has all the shops or might live in a small town with one grocery store but when options are available source out the best deals and save the cash if you can.

A bucket of feta at Metro is $17.99 and the exact same bucket at Food Basics is $13.99. I don’t know about you but I work hard for my money and that $4.00 could certainly be put to better use.

 

What do you think of the new Food Basics guarantee to the customers?

 

November Grocery Game Challenge Posts

 

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you.

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

download symbol

 

Missed past Grocery Game posts? Catch up on all the latest grocery saving posts below!

 

Food food and more food

 

what_s-in-mrcbbs-shopping-cart

Food Basics

  • Chipits $6.88
  • Produce $1/49
  • Selection Tea $2.49
  • Havarti- $10.00
  • 2x Cantaloupe Sale $0.99 each
  • Premium Bananas $1.69
  • Sweet Potatoes $3.03
  • Bread Crumbs $1.49
  • Avocado $2.97
  • 2 x lean ground beef sale $3.76
  • Oranges $1.97
  • Apple Red Delicious $1.97
  • Bok Choy $3.10

Total out of pocket $46.58

Metro

  • Selection Tea Bags Sale $2.49
  • 2x Pineapples Sale $2.50
  • Clementines case $3.44

Total out of pocket $15.22

 

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2819.38

 

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget For November $235.00
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $0 Used $0
  • Total Spent This Week: $61.80
  • Total Spent So Far for November $142.85
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of (November): $0
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $92.15
  • Total Coupons Used This Month: $2.00
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95 (Jan)+ $160.77 (Feb) + (March)$169.62 + (April) $397.74+(May) $155.68 + (June) $216.01+ (July) $235.83 + (August) $182.35 + (September) $255.69 + (October) $196.64=  $2177.28 (does not include stockpile budget)
  • Rendezvous Account: $65.38+$17.24 =$82.62<> This is money saved if there is any leftover at the end of a month of grocery shopping for a date night for the wife and I.
  • Weekly Overview: We didn’t need much in the way of meat this week so we loaded up on fruits at Metro for a great price and some other odds and sods at Food Basics that was needed in the pantry. We went with some lean ground beef this time so we can mix it up and make some meatballs, lasagna or even a pot of taco soup. We normally use turkey mince but since this was a great deal we opted for beef since it’s been a long while. We are not opposed to certain proteins we just moderate how much we eat and try to get leaner cuts when possible.

 

Canadian Coupons Found

 

canadian-coupons-november-2013

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices. Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this t of our budget like many people do and this is why the grocery game challenge was created.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

You’ve made a wise decision.

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada!

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Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

 

 

 

The grocery game challenge Aug 12-18, 2013 #2- Grocery shopping for seniors

senior-with-a-tablet

Seniors And Weekly Grocery Shopping Services 

I can remember my grandmother, a spunky little lady with a British attitude that could swipe you off your feet. She was strong, independent and wealthy and wouldn’t have anyone take her places. She wanted to do it all on her own because like many older seniors they don’t want to feel like they have to depend on others to get things done in their life as they age unless they are forced to for health reasons.

My grandmother would come over to my parents house for Sunday dinner and all she would talk about was food and recipes because she loved to cook. She also loved to grocery shop because back in her time everything was created homemade and there was no room for convenience foods yet she was a smart shopper.

Food shopping list

I asked my mother the phone other day about my grandmother while I called so I could learn more about her to share with all of you. My mother told me that my grandmother knew what she was going to eat ahead of time for the week so meal planning was essential to her saving money and saving time by knowing what to cook. She would sit down every weekend with a piece of paper and pencil and go through her pantry and refrigerator to see what she had on hand and what she needed to buy for her recipes. She was a very detailed woman and didn’t miss a beat.

Over the years as my grandmother aged that independence she once fought so hard to keep came to a stand still. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and slowly we were doing more for her than ever before. Grocery delivery for seniors may have existed back then but with my parents living in the same village it was just as easy for them to help her with her grocery list and pick up the groceries for her. Eventually we had to sell her amazingly gorgeous mansion (I call it), but it was a huge home on a well-kept property so she could be taken care of.

Some seniors can still live in their home but struggle to get out because they no longer drive or taking the transit is just too much for them. Even if a senior can make it to the supermarket they may find that loading and unloading groceries is too much to bear and trying to bring them home is a struggle. For many, the convenience to have family or friends to help out or paying a small fee for a grocery delivery service is well worth it to them.

Grocery delivery for seniors

These days grocery shopping businesses are opening up all over the place and for a small fee you can have your grocery shopping picked up, paid for and delivered for a small fee in Canada. It’s not a service just for seniors either anyone can use it if you are willing to pay the fee. Many elderly care services in local communities will include shopping services and trips to the supermarket together.

Grocery Angels Canada out of Hamilton, Ontario a store to door personalized grocery service will do your grocery shopping for you. They charge certain fees depending on how much your grocery bill costs. For example: If your receipt total is up to $115 the cost for grocery shopping is $10 and delivery another $10 which seems reasonable enough to me. Spending over $350 in groceries will only cost you  a mere $35 in shopping and delivery fees.

Seniors and technology

There is so much information for senior shopping online these days as services geared to older adults and the elderly are sky-rocketing. When someone decides to use a grocery delivery service they need to weight the pros and cons according to the way they feel about the entire scenario. Using such a service will save time, save money on gas and for some a taxi, transit money, owning a vehicle and the ability to have someone find the best deals for them at the best price.

These days we see more seniors using technology then ever before even though I struggle to get my mum and dad on the computer for many seniors the internet is a window to the world as it is for everyone else. I’m in awe when I see seniors using a tablet, Iphone and a computer better than I can but that’s something they want to do.

Even though not everyone wants in on the world of technology being hooked up may be a great way to feel you are still very much part of society and the world around us, especially if the senior doesn’t get out much. Having the internet available to seniors allows them to make shopping online and easy process rather than a stressful outing they might not want to endure.

My grandmother is not with us any longer but she taught us that she wouldn’t take no for an answer and that if a woman says she can still do it, let her because it means she can.

Do you help your parents or other older adults or seniors to grocery shop? Have you used any type of grocery shopping service before? What was your experience like?

grocery-game-2-August

August grocery game recap

If you missed grocery game posts for this month just click on the links below and post your shops in the comment section. We are currently on week 2 for August so week 1 is posted below if you still have to post your shop.

Grocery saving tips

Free Money Saving Downloads are lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals. Get organized with a freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. I want to see you save money in your budget.

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy

Food food and more food

What’s In MrCBB's Shopping Cart

Food Basics

  • 4 x Nescafe Instant Coffee Sale $3.97 (15.88 to stockpile)
  • Allen’s Vinegar Sale $1.99
  • 2 x Sunflower Seeds $1.99
  • 1x Iceberg Lettuce $0.88
  • 2 x Mozzarella Cheese Silani Sale $3.99
  • 2 x Lactancia Cream cheese Sale $1.77 ea
  • Tomatoes $2.19
  • Yellow zucchini Reduced $1.99
  • Mushrooms Reduced $0.99
  • Bok Choy Reduced $0.99
  • Limes Reduced $0.99
  • Grapefruit Sale $2.97
  • Navel Oranges Sale $2.97
  • Cantaloupe Reduced $0.49
  • Red Onions $2.96
  • 6 x Brats Sausage Reg price $21.50  - $6.45 stickers = Reduced Price $15.05

Total out-of-pocket $51.55 with $15.88 to stockpile

Shoppers Drug Mart

  • 2 x large dozen of eggs rain check $1.99 each
  • 1x Neilson Milk 4 litres $3.97
  • 4 x Danone Yogurt 750 ml tubs 1 with $1.00 coupon on it Sale 2/$4.00- $5.00 coupon = $2.00 for 4 :-)

Total of out pocket $9.95

grocery-game-August-2013

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2819.38
  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget For July: $235.00- $53.08 (over-spend in July) = $181.92 to spend in July.
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $5.00
  • Total Discounts this Week: $7.45
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $20.00 Used $15.88 (Nescafe coffee)
  • Total Spent This Week: $61.50
  • Total Spent So Far for August $106.47
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop:  $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of  (August): $ 0
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $75.45
  • Total Coupons Used This Month:$2.75+$5.00
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $ n/a
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95 (Jan)+ $160.77 (Feb) + (March)$169.62 + (April)$397.74+(May) $155.68 + (June) $216.01+ (July) $235.83=$1542.60 (does not include stockpile budget)
  • Rendezvous Account: $65.38 This is money saved if there is any leftover at the end of a month of grocery shopping for a date night for the wife and I.

Weekly Overview: We spent more than we anticipated to this week but the coffee was on sale for a good price and we were almost out of our stockpile. The sausages are always hard for us to pass up as we eat them often so when we see them 30% off we grab them. This month shouldn’t be too bad as we are well stocked now. 

Canadian coupons found in August

We didn’t find any coupons this week.

Frequently Asked Questions

Grocery Game Challenge RULES….. Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible. 

  1. Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop? No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have a few players from around the world.
  2. When does the Grocery Game Close each month? The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.
  3. Does Your Grocery Budget Include Health and Beauty and Laundry? Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.
  4. Where can I find Canadian CouponsHere are your latest Coupon Match-ups  of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.
  5. What is an FPC? An fpc is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  6. How Do I Know what stores accept coupons? You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  7. How Do I Grocery Shop?- I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I ‘need to buy this or that. You may also substitute items in order to stick to your budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do and this is why the grocery game challenge was created.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving. You’ve made a wise decision.

Money-quote

Are you NEW to Canadian Budget Binder?

Photo Courtesy of: Freedigitalphotos. net