Whatever You Do ~ Don’t shop hungry!
This advice falls under the category of ‘couponing 101′. It’s pretty much a no brainier; if you are hungry, it is certainly not the best time to shop. I know there are circumstances where you just can’t get around this, but try your best to NOT fall into this trap – THE STORES EAT THIS UP! (no pun intended ~ or maybe it was). It is not by happenstance that milk is at the back of the store where you have to navigate through potato chips and soft drinks that are calling your name.
When you shop on an empty stomach, or one that is almost to that point, you are in the “Danger, Danger, Will Robinson, abort, abort zone”. More time than I can count I have done this, checked out, looked at my receipt to make sure I didn’t miss a coupon, only to realize I was the culprit, I impulsed shopped – which is a definite NO NO when you want to shop strategically. Don’t get me wrong, there will be times that you HAVE to buy an item you use/need on a daily basis, yet don’t have a coupon for. ALWAYS keep this in mind; don’t feel like a failure if you have to buy a product without a coupon ~ it happens to the best of us. An easy way around this is to check the store ads to see who has THE best deal that week. E.G. I recently began taking a vitamin supplement and I HAVE to drink O.J. prune juice (No, thank you very much), or grapefruit juice. I bit the bullet last week and bought Tropicana 2-$6, which made one bottle $3. I hope to find a coupon REAL soon so I can take the receipt back to the store to get cold, hard cash in my hand. Make sure to go shopping after you eat or bring along a snack to munch on (this is especially important if you have kids in tow).
Here’s what I do. Because I rarely have an appetite, but know I need sustenance to keep me alive, I take a small baggie of pecans and a BIG bottle of water; which is in my own, reusable beverage holder. I can’t tell you the last time I bought a case of watered bottle. I have a Brita water pitcher at home that gets used over and over.
Now rewind and think in reverse. Hugh? It’s also dangerous to shop after a HUGE meal; you are so full that nothing seems appealing at the moment. But, if you make a list, check it twice, have your coupons & binder, then by all means STICK TO IT! I also find myself putting items in my cart that I KNOW are a great deal, even if I don’t have a coupon, yet nine times out of ten I have buyers removse before I even purchase the product(s), and so I leve it/them with the cashier. Please don’t leave a pair of socks in the produce aisle because you don’t want to trek all the way to the other side of the store. The cashier and customer service folks LOVE it when we leave things with the cashier (If we can’t put them in their rightful place.).
I know folks who pay someone to shop for them so they WON’T impulse buy; they know it’s very hard on them, and they are willing to pay a personal shopper; they still make money because of rock bottom deals and using coupons.
What are your points? Do you have any you will share with us? We LOVE to hear from our followers. I am always up to learning new tricks.