With the heightened cost of living in Kuala Lumpur (compared to the past years), the city dwellers have to find and create ways to adapt. So, just how do you not splurge when buying groceries? Here are a few grocery shopping tips to help you save some ringgit!

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1. Scan The Aisles And Shelves.

Grocery stores and supermarkets have established techniques to sell their favoured brands and items. One strategy they do is to put the highest priced or favoured brands at eye level.

The rationale behind this is that people tend to purchase what they see first, based on studies. So, if you want cheaper options, check the lower shelves.

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2. Find Luck When It’s Closing Time

One important life lesson that I have learned as I faced adulthood is that bakeries at supermarkets tend to offer their baked goods at half price to free (sometimes, if you lucky lah) an hour before closing time.

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3. Check Grocery Store Catalogues To See What’s On Sale Or Promo

Another life lesson I have learned is that grocery stores and supermarkets print catalogues of weekly deals. Check them out as you might find your non-perishable things to buy at half the price.

You can stock them up for future use, anyway. And, by the way, catalogues tend to include coupons, too.

4. Speaking Of Coupons: Use Coupons.

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Don’t shy away from these tiny treasures. Coupons can bring you lots of savings. Believe it or not, there are people who rely on coupons so they don’t spend on their toiletries or shopping.

5. Don’t Shop Or Write Your Shopping List Hungry

Eat first. You will be facing all sorts of temptation the moment you step inside the grocery store.

There’s going to be aromatic freshly-baked bread at the corner. Then, there are the aisles of chips, sodas, biscuits, and frozen snacks. The possibility of you caving in to the lure is higher when you are hungry. You’ll end up spending beyond your allotted budget.

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Listing and shopping for groceries when hungry can also result to either picking up less than the needed supplies or buying the wrong items of brands.

6. Make A Grocery List With A Budget. Stick To It.

Jot down your household’s primary staple foods — some cooking oil, some vegetables, toothpaste, and whatever else you need. Based on your week’s meal plan (and supplies list for non-food items), list down the other ingredients.

If you don’t have a meal plan, make one! It will not only save you money but also time and effort from going back and forth the grocery store.

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If you know the estimated prices, write them down so it will be easier for you to put aside the budget for your grocery trip.

If you don’t know the prices, take notes while you do your shopping later on. Your notes on prices will be of help to you on your next grocery shopping trip.

7. Opt for house brands if you can.

Not many people trust house brands for the sole reason that they aren’t as advertised as commercialised brands. But if you take time to read the contents of house brands, you’ll realise that they contain the same ingredients as the bigger brands.

It’s like getting paracetamol but not from Panadol. If you find that the house brand of a certain product is just as effective as the big brand, why pay more?

8. Use Price Scanners

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Whether they admit it or not, there are stores with vague pricing labels. Some stores don’t have tags on their stocks. Others might not have price stickers on as the shelves have just been restocked. Whatever is the case, do not hesitate to ask store personnel for assistance.

If there are price scanners available, use them. It’s better to be sure than to end up paying more later on.

9. Use membership cards and/or partner credit cards.

If you frequent a particular grocery store, check if they have a membership program. A loyalty card is your ticket to bonus points you can use as credit, extra member deals, and freebies.

On the same note, shopping with credit cards can win you reward points and even cashback. Just remember to use the right credit cards at the right stores.

10. Check Your Receipt.

It never hurts to check it once and then, check it twice. Read your receipt before leaving the store. Mistakes can happen no matter how thorough the cashier can be.

It’s better to resolve potential concerns as soon as possible than to lose money.

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11. Shop for groceries online.

If you like to shop for clothes online, why not try buying your groceries? You can get the shopping done in a few minutes, especially with the use of the search bar.

Just make sure that you’ll be at home or that someone is at your house is when the delivery truck arrives. You don’t want rotten perishables after all.

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If you’re lazy to grocery shop and would rather order groceries online, check out the ongoing HappyFresh discounts or Honestbee coupons – you still can get cashback just by shopping through ShopBack.

A little economic discipline and knowledge on your grocery shopping will help you save money and learn how to grocery shop smart. What are the smarter ways you grocery shop?