My Lazy Approach to Grocery Savings

When I went grocery shopping a couple of Sundays ago, I didn’t know that this shopping trip would be different. Each time I go grocery shopping, I try to beat my previous shopping trip’s amount saved. I am proud to say that this was my biggest savings yet. I purchased $83 worth of groceries for only $58!

Total Before Coupons: $83.09
Manufacturer Coupons Used: $5.55
Total After MVP Specials: $69.60
Ibotta Rebates: $5.00
Checkout 51 Rebates: $5.75
Savings Star: $.44

Total for Groceries: $58.41

Now, that may not seem impressive to some of you, especially those of you who used to watch “Extreme Couponing” on TLC or who frequent couponing blogs. But for someone like me, someone who doesn’t put much effort into couponing – this is a big deal!

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Here is all that I got for my $58. I don’t think it looks like all that much really, but what is important is that everything pictured is stuff that will be used. I’m not stockpiling for winter. I don’t want to put that much effort into clipping coupons.

This is how I do it. Please keep in mind that I go to Food Lion, which may not be available in your area, but maybe my routine is something you can use. Very rarely do I venture out to Wal-Mart, even though it’s only about 10-15 minutes away.

Ibotta has been my savings website of choice for quite a while now. I check out Ibotta, unlock any rebates that I may be interested in. I always unlock the ANY BRAND rebates – they are an easy way to make a little money back if you are getting the basics – usually onions, bread, milk are popular ones. Then I visit Food Lion’s website and log in to my MVP account (MVP is like their customer loyalty program). I don’t view the sale pages – instead I view my virtual wallet and see what coupons I can load electronically to my card. I hate carrying paper coupons.

Usually I’ll cross reference between Ibotta and Food Lion’s MVP Coupons to see what may be available. For example, if Fruit Loops is $1 off at Food Lion and $.25 back at Ibotta, I’ll get Fruit Loops if I need cereal.

I started using two new savings apps the weekend – Checkout 51 and SavingsStar. I am in love with Checkout 51 already. While Checkout 51 doesn’t have as many rebate options as Ibotta, the items up there were ones I needed so it will add up quickly. I’m still on the fence about SavingsStar but since I can cash out when I hit $5, I may keep that one for a while longer.

Once I get to the store, there is a kiosk I can scan my loyalty card at for additional coupons. Most are duds, but Sunday, I hit the jackpot. $1 off 3 avocados. Combine that with $.25 Ibotta rebate on avocados and $1.50 back on 3 avocados (+1 can Ro*Tel) from Cart 51 – that put me getting 3 avocados and a can of Ro*Tel for only $2.81  and I’ll tell you, that made some delicious guacamole for supper.

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Another great thing that I want to mention is that because I spent $50 or more during my last 6 shopping trips, I earned a $20 coupon good for my next shopping trip totaling over $20. Considering my pantry is well stocked, I’ll probably end up spending that coupon on fresh produce or maybe something to throw on the grill.

Going back over my receipt, I noticed that Ibotta never credited me for one of my items. I may need to look in to that… :-/

What has been your greatest grocery store savings?

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