The Grocery Game | Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide

Why You Must Say YES To Your Grocery Receipt : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #3 June 13-19

why you should say yes to your grocery receipt



I never leave a transaction where money is exchanged without proof of purchase especially at the supermarket because that grocery receipt is your financial life-line when using a grocery budget.

There’s nothing wrong with being a receipt hog. You need this stuff to balance your budget but that’s not all.

Writing this post came to me after I was doing my nosey thing in the grocery line waiting for my turn to put our products on the belt. The guy in front of me who looked like he was in his early 30’s was buying a small shop of milk, bread, steak, corn, mushrooms and a few other bits and bobs.

I wasn’t too interested in his shop until my son had a mini tantrum and wanted out of the shopping cart so the wife took him and I waited in line without interruption. Then what happens next is what blows me away every time. The cashier said to the customer, “Would you like your receipt sir?” and he said, “um, no I don’t need it.”  Really? Must be nice to be so fast and free with money.

Why on earth do people not want to read their grocery receipt?

  • Maybe they are rich and don’t care
  • Maybe they don’t care
  • Maybe they don’t know any better

Do you ever notice the cashier asks you if you’d like your grocery receipt as he/she is holding it up and it’s printing? Or just as your receipt is printing the register tape runs out. That would be just my luck, however I would still wait for my receipt. That’s likely another reason some people opt out of waiting around for the store receipt. They don’t want to waste time, don’t have time or have no patience.

The problem today is that so many people complain about not being able to afford to grocery shop but they fail to invest in learning about ways to save money at the grocery store. That little or big grocery receipt holds a wealth of information that will help you save money that you may not have even known you were spending.

Let me explain further why it’s important for you to say YES to your grocery receipt and YES to wanting to save money on groceries.


Scanning Code of Practice


I’ve lost count how many times I’ve blogged about the Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) in Canada but if you are still in the dark about this pricing system it’s imperative you learn about how SCOP works. If you don’t read your receipt you won’t likely know there was a pricing error which means you won’t be eligible to apply SCOP if you don’t have your receipt.

I know many of you find out about a pricing error once you get home and read your grocery receipt. There is nothing wrong with this as you simply call the store, let them know and give them your name. The next time you go in you bring your receipt and they will sort out the pricing error. If you don’t have your receipt you miss out on getting a FREE product or up to $10 back on a product over $10 because you said NO to your grocery receipt or you tossed it in the bin or lost it. Take care of that piece of gold paper would ya!


Grocery Comparison


Unless you don’t care about how much your grocery budget then you should say YES to your grocery receipt so you can complete price comparisons at home. What we do is hang on to our receipts and look back to see how prices fluctuate so we know when a good bargain comes up in the flyers or we find an unadvertised sale in the grocery store. Starting a grocery price book of typical products you purchase is a great way to get familiar with grocery store prices but you’ll need that grocery receipt. Grab it!


Grocery Saving Apps


How do coupons work?
These days it’s all about the grocery receipt and less of an actual coupon. For the love of paper coupons we’ve seen less of them at the grocery store and more opportunity to save money with coupon apps such as Checkout51 for instance.

The only downfall is that if you say NO to your grocery receipt you can’t take photos of your receipt to claim the grocery saving app discounts. Say Yes to your grocery receipt and stop throwing money out the window for nothing.


Product Returns


Some grocery stores are lenient about letting customers return products without a receipt but you may not get cash back rather an in-store credit. If you are a well-known customer they may believe you more than someone who just pops in from time to time.

Related: Product Price Adjustments- Don’t miss the savings

Although the store wants to uphold excellent customer service they also have to look after their own budget. If people are returning products that they didn’t purchase at their particular store then they are now losing money. The last thing we want is to see higher prices due to fraud, theft and other sneaky ways some customers go about making money from product returns.

When you have your grocery receipt it makes product returns 100% easier and legit for the customer. It also helps if your store offers price adjustments which means you can get the sale price even if you bought the product the week before. See rules for every store and the grocery store return policy for more info.

Say YES to your grocery receipt and stash it away in an envelope or file folder so you have easy access to it when needed.




Lastly, our grocery budget would not survive if we didn’t have our grocery receipts every month. We input the data into our excel budget spreadsheet (get it FREE) and then the budget does all the work for us. If we don’t have our grocery receipt we won’t know how to balance our budget nor will we know how much our grocery budget should be.

Final thoughts…say YES to your grocery receipt.

The grocery receipt is like your window into how you spend your money at the grocery store and helps you to figure out where you can improve, make changes, find errors and most of all save money.

Tell me about a time you said YES to your grocery receipt and it saved you MONEY.


June Grocery Game Challenge posts 2016


Join in the 2016 Grocery Game Challenge (GGC) fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each GGC blog post. Here are the rules to get you started and where you’ll also find a link for the updated 2016 GGC schedule. Please feel free to download, save and even print the schedule so it’s handy.

New monthly prize: $10 President’s Choice Gift Card for Canadian residents only BUT If you want to play from outside of Canada and have PayPal and you win I will pay you $10 Canadian. I use a random online generator to pick the winning ballot every month.

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up each week below for you so you don’t have to go looking for past GGC posts for the month. Alternatively, just click on the “Grocery Game Challenge” tab on the blog side-bar to see past posts.

June Grocery Game Posts


Free Money Saving Tools 2016


I know I blast you every which way I can on this blog about my free money saving tools and that’s because I want you to take advantage of them being FREE. So many people pay for budgets and tools on the internet to help them save money and honestly you don’t need to. Even a paper and pen will do the trick.

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

This is the budget that brought us to debt freedom back in 2013 and now I’m offering to all of you for FREE. We still use this budget every month as it helps us to see our overall financial picture.

2014 Free Money Saving ToolsDon’t pay someone for these services, I’ve done the work for you along with some help from other amazing bloggers.

You can download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget and in large part a reason we could pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!

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.

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. So many free resources at your fingertips.


Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide 2016


the ultimate grocery shopping guide cbbEverything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is packed into this amazing FREE grocery shopping guide that has taken over 4 years to create.

The Ultimate Grocery Shopping guide is ongoing with new informative money-saving posts added every month.

Even if you don’t live in Canada there are some amazing budget saving tips that will help put you on the path to more savings at the supermarket.

Share this guide with your friends and tell them about Canadian Budget Binder especially if they are struggling with their grocery budget.

The time is NOW to get started saving money on groceries so please enjoy the  many money-saving posts in the The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.


2016 Grocery Shop Results


Yearly grocery budget for two + 1 Toddler 2016: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.

Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month:$235.00-$52.57=$182.43
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $182.43
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $50
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 223,000
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP)to date $0
  • Shoppers Optimum: Over 700,000 points (I will update this twice a year)

Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $17.00


Our Grocery Shop This Week



  • 1 x 2% Milk Neilson $4.27
  • 2lbs of bananas Sale $0.57lb = $1.20
  • 4 x dozen eggs Sale $2.49 each = $9.96
  • 1lb Radish $1.99
  • 1 Fennel $2.99
  • Asparagus Sale $1.99lb = $8.00
  • Bangers Sausages $11.98-50% = $6.00
  • Medium Ground Beef Club Pack $11.30, $11.33-50% each $5.65, $5.67
  • Bucket of PC Kale $5.49-50% = $2.75
  • Bucket of PC Arugula $3.99-$50% = $2.00
  • Club Pack Portobello Mushrooms $4.99-50% = $2.50

Total Out-of-pocket $52.93

  • Total to spend this month : $182.43
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $23.28
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $15.36
  • Total in-store discounts this week:$24.57
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $335.30
  • Total spent this week: $52.93
  • Total spent so far this month: $168.26
  • Total over/Under spend this shop: n/a
  • Total over/Under spend for the month:- $ n/a
  • Total left to spend for the month: $14.17
  • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $252.95+ Feb $249.46+March $211.11+April $248.11+May $279.07+June $

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

If you haven’t noticed already I messed up the Grocery Game 2016 schedule by ending May a week early. I apologize for that. My plan moving forward is to make June a 5 week month although many of you possibly have May as your 5 weeks which is perfectly fine. After June the schedule will continue as normal unless something else happens. In the event anyone notices any concerns with the schedule let me know and I’ll try and fix it immediately. Sometimes my head is in the clouds. Thanks for the catch ladies.

With the 5 weeks of June grocery shopping we will likely run out of our grocery budget for the month. The good part is we have over $200 in PC points if we need to use them. We are pretty stocked in the house but we will need milk and some veg. With only $14.17 and a bit of our stockpile budget left that’s going to be a tight 2 weeks of groceries for us.

This week wasn’t too bad as we scored lots of 50% off meat and vegetables at Zehrs. I’m sure that’s where we will be shopping in the next 2 weeks unless some wonderful sales pop up in the flyers.




Coupons and Coupon Apps 2016


Here are some great places you can find Canadian Coupons! These are your latest Checkout 51 offers which you can use to help save money. We’re finding less and less coupons in the stores these days. What are your thoughts? Are coupon apps taking over the paper coupons?

Sign up for the Nielsen Canada Home Scan Program and you can earn rewards points fast to redeem for awesome products or gift cards. I did this in the UK and loved it!!

Where can I find Canadian Coupons 2016?

Plus check out these other hidden areas online to get more coupons!!

  • Healthy Essentials Printable Coupons (Johnson and Johnson)
  • Clorox Coupons Sign up to print coupons in the Clorox family which include Greenworks, Glad etc.
  • Kraft Canada Sign up and receive recipes and coupons by email
  • Printable Smart Source Coupons
  • Walmart Canada Printable Coupons
  • Proctor and Gamble PandG Sign up for printable coupons
  • Hidden Coupon Portals You Should know about – I found this over at Save a Loonie and you’ll want to sign up for notifications and check out the site so you get notified every time a hidden coupon is available from, Brandsaver, Smart Source etc.


Grocery Game Challenge 2016 FAQ’s


  • 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. The rules have been updated for the 2016 challenge year.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • What is the monthly prize and who can claim it?- The monthly prize is a $10 PC Loblaws Gift Card and for our out of country friends it’s $10 CDN via Paypal if they win. As more people join I will add more money to the gift card or I will split it up and offer 2 prizes every month.
  • 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 but you will still get a ballot when you post your shops even if they are late but I encourage you to stay on schedule. If you choose to post monthly  or bi-weekly you will only get 1 ballot for that shop. It’s a proven fact the minute we stop doing something that is scheduled that we end up forgetting to do it altogether. Don’t let that be you! You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: No, our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. As of 2014-2015 we no longer include such items in our grocery budget so we can see actual food numbers at the end of the year in order to plan accordingly our budget.
  • Do you stockpile food? 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 longer as we found we weren’t eating it fast enough. Stockpiling is still great and just one way to help cut your budget to save money if you do find items that you can buy in bulk at a sale price.
  • Canadian Coupons:Where can I find Canadian Coupons?: Here are your latest  Checkout 51 offers that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge. There are many great Canadian Couponing websites online that share weekly coupon match-ups so you can plan your grocery list.
  • Best Coupon Apps: Coupons are slowly fading with mobile coupon apps being the big rave these days. Just recently the popular coupon site that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile app joining forces with the many other coupon apps available. If you find an app that I don’t talk about please let me know as they are always being added and I’d like to review them.
  • What is the Best Flyer App- We use Flipp on our Iphone so if you wan to have all your flyers in one spot download Flipp from the Apple Store or get it on Google Play.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • What is GGC?– The Grocery Game Challenge of course!
  • 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.

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 back in 2012 and is one of the most popular hang out spots for people who want to save money on groceries in Canada.

If you’ve just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 get ready to look at your grocery budget by learning…

  • Where you are spending money
  • How much money you are spending
  • How much money you are saving every month

If you want to learn everything I know about grocery shopping in Canada check out my Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide! It’s FREE!

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email. If I use your topic I will put your name in a draw for a prize at the end of the year.

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 2016!

Please Note: Some of the links in the body of the blog post are affiliate links which means I may get paid if you buy something from Amazon. The items I’ve chosen are products we use at home or similar to.


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