Published On: Mon, Jan 18th, 2016

5 Simple Ways College Students Save on Groceries

Do you have a monthly grocery budget or do you just go to the grocery store and buy what you want?

Be honest, you don’t like waiting in the checkout line behind the extreme couponer. You know the one who has a stack of coupons and is watching to make sure the cashier scan the coupons without any problems. You might of been too annoyed to see just how much they saved on their groceries. You might of been too much in a hurry to think you can save that much money too.

According to Inmar—a company that operates intelligent commerce networks— in 2014, 2.84 billion coupons were redeemed. In data released in April of this year, 660 million coupons were redeemed in the first quarter of 2015.

How many times do we say we wish we can get this and that for free and it actually be possible? However, not everything that is free comes easy and couponing can be complex but it doesn’t have to be a chore.

I’m going to share with you some tips on how those coupons you find in newspapers, on your favorite products and you receive in the mail can leave you with a cart full of groceries and your wallet still full of cash.

1.) Buy what’s on sale: Sounds like common sense, but it’s the foremost reason as to why you save money in the first place. When you buy what’s on sale you’re maximizing your dollar and when you match that sale item with a coupon, you can reduce that product value by 50% or more. When you go grocery shopping, it’s not about what the eyes see and the stomach wants, it’s about what is marked down and size of your budget. Let’s put back the chips because we see the bag of chips and wait until it is on sale.

2.) Use coupons – Coupons are here to help us save money. If you have to think about how you can start cutting back in areas you’re spending way too much, groceries are one of the first areas to look. Once you start incorporating coupons into your shopping trips, you’ll be amazed to see your full cart cost priced at $20 or less just by buying items on sale and with coupons. Buy a couple of newspapers, print coupons from coupons.com, hold on to the printed coupons attached to your receipt and put them to use!

3.) Earn cash back – Couponing can be just as rewarding as it is fun and tedious. Earn cash back through rebate apps such as IbottaSavingsStar and Checkout51 with the simple task of uploading your receipt or scanning its barcode. Ibotta also lets you earn money back by watching a video or answering a short poll. These apps come in handy because you can earn money from your purchases that are featured. Once you get in the habit of redeeming your purchases and enjoying these rebates, cash out and let your rebate pay for your next shopping trip!

4.) Get familiar with retail prices – If you make multiple trips in a month to the grocery store and are buying the same products, you may start noticing the prices a little bit differently. It’s important to know the normal prices of items—especially ones that are your favorite—so you know what a good deal looks like.

For example, a 50 ounce bottle of Tide detergent retail price is $5.49 and let’s say one week it’s on sale for $4.99. That’s only a $.50 save, but that price can drop even lower when you match a sale price with a coupon. During that sale, you have a $3 off one laundry detergent. Use it and pay $1.99, now you saved $3.50 on one bottle of detergent. And boom you saved 63% on laundry detergent that easy. Doesn’t that sound nice to buy 3 detergents for $5.49 instead of just one?

5.) Stock up – That $1.99 laundry detergent is a stock price because it’s price point is so cheap it’s better to buy in bulk for the next few months or so. Household essentials and personal care items are the most popular items to stock because we run through toilet paper, paper towels, toothpaste and body wash. When these items are priced extremely low, it’s best to get a supply that covers the size of your family and can last you for a while. The same goes for when there’s an awesome deal on cereal and can vegetables. Next thing you know, 3 months have passed and you haven’t had to buy cereal or toilet tissue because you purchased enough to last you.

With the extra money in your pocket and less time spent in the grocery store you can see your savings start to pile up. Cut down on debt or distribute your extra expenses elsewhere. Start seeing money filter to that vacation you’re saving for, pair of shoes you’ve been admiring, or that car note.

5 Simple Ways College Students Save on Groceries is a post from: Young Finances by Kayla Peeples


Source: Young Finances

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LaTisha Styles

LaTisha Styles is a motivational speaker, millennial money expert, and spokesperson specializing in simple finance for millennials.
LaTisha is the producer and host of Young Finances TV, a weekly series featuring funny, insightful videos on the basics of personal finance. LaTisha has been quoted in Forbes and Mainstreet, featured in The Economist, and mentioned in US News as a top personal finance expert to follow on Twitter.
You can follow LaTisha on Twitter for daily millennial money tips to budget, invest and achieve success!
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About the Author

- LaTisha Styles is a motivational speaker, millennial money expert, and spokesperson specializing in simple finance for millennials. LaTisha is the producer and host of Young Finances TV, a weekly series featuring funny, insightful videos on the basics of personal finance. LaTisha has been quoted in Forbes and Mainstreet, featured in The Economist, and mentioned in US News as a top personal finance expert to follow on Twitter. You can follow LaTisha on Twitter for daily millennial money tips to budget, invest and achieve success!

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Did you know?

African Americans are significantly more likely to have some type of debt (94%) compared with the general population (82%). Credit card debt, student loan debt, and personal loans are all significantly higher in the African American community.

Source: Prudential’s 2013 "African American Financial Experience" study