- MEAL PLAN AHEAD OF TIME
Start the week out right by spending about 30 minutes planning your meals for the next week. This could save you around $50 a week per person! By planning out each meal you will know exactly what you need at the grocery store and also allows you to draw out and stick to your budget. Say goodbye to those stressful nights where you don’t know what you will do for dinner and don’t have the right food to make the meal you want.
- BRING A GROCERY LIST
Temptations lurk around every corner at the grocery store. Having a list with you helps distinguish wants from needs. If an item is not on your list it’s unnecessary, and is something you can wait to purchase later. Having your list with you can also help save time. When you spend less time in the grocery store you are less apt to purchase items not on your list. Try to set a time limit next time you go in and see how much it helps you save!
- EAT LEFT-OVERS
Did you know that the average US family of four throws away $1,500 in food each year? All of this uneaten food not only wastes resources but it wastes your money. By eating left-overs you save the money you would have spent at a restaurant or on more food from the grocery store. The key is to find the happy medium between making too much food and just enough to have a night or two of leftovers.
- DON’T PURCHASE UNNECESSARY ITEMS
Try reducing the amount of food that is an impulse – sticking to your grocery list can help with this! Ask yourself if you are getting an item simply because you are out and are replacing it or if you truly need it. Also try reducing the number of duplicate items you are purchasing. For example, if you typically purchase four kinds of cereal, try reducing that to only two kinds. This will clear up clutter in your pantry and save you money.
- LIMIT RESTAURANT AND FAST FOOD MEALS
This tip may seem like the most obvious, but is often overlooked. The average American household spends about $3,000 on food away from home each year. This number can be reduced by meal planning ahead of time. Try planning on only going out one or two nights a week. On average it is more expensive to go out to eat versus purchasing meal items at a grocery store.
Now that you are a savings expert here is just one more perk to spending money on food. This summer, between Memorial Day and Labor Day, when you use your HACU VISA Platinum Rewards card you can earn up to three times the ScoreCard points for each dollar you spend. Then redeem your points and reward yourself with things like a dream getaway, fuel discounts, brand name merchandise and gift cards.
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