If you read my blogs on how I cut my grocery budget in half, your curiosity most probably got the better of you, and you wanted to see if my method can actually help you save as well… I am certain you were just as surprised as I was the first time I tried this. IT WORKS!!
Well done, Super Shopper, for taking on this challenge. You will be able to save up for that 5-star spa weekend in no time!
I’ve found that most of my research done on saving, budgeting or frugal living were just not applicable in the South African context. So to help you along a little, I’m adding a few of my own practical tips to help you along.
REWARD PROGRAMMES/ LOYALTY POINTS
We love these. Frugal living need not be boring. We are shopping at the store anyway. Might as well use the rewards and savings offered.
Our first loyalty points card was Pick n Pay’s Smart Shopper. But since we’re FNB users, we get e-bucks for shopping at Checkers, so we have switched over the last few years. Go where you are most comfortable, and the store closest to you.
I still do our brand, MonaLisa Mamas’ shopping at PnP and often get rewards such as these (photo) and then only use them if it’s a need to have, not a want to have. (Actually used this voucher to buy dishwasher soap, and basically paid half-price for – and saving – an item I needed. SCORE!)
Once a month, I do our toiletries shopping at Dischem (or Clicks, if you prefer) and also use their loyalty programme. There have been months when I’ve used my points to buy our toiletries and not even pay a cent. True story.
Use the loyalty programmes where you are shopping anyway. But don’t throw away the others. Every now and then, it does come in handy.
When I came across SNAPnSAVE, I didn’t think it will pay me back hundreds, but wanted to see how it worked. I used it for a year. My cashback was R810.82
Sure, it doesn’t sound like millions. But I did nothing more than I usually do. I still only bought the items I needed, and if it was available as an offer on the app, I claimed it.
How SnapnSave works: It’s a shopping app that gives you cash back when you stop in-store. No paper coupons, no loyalty points etc. Just real cash back on items that you buy everyday. Every week it loads “offers” that you can book. (bread, milk, eggs, chocolates, vegetables, toothpaste…) You can purchase it at any major retailer, open your app, snap a photo of your till slip at home, and wait for your ka-ching!
Once you’ve accumulated minimum R10 in your digital wallet, you can cashout using various methods. EFT to your bank, WiCodes (what we use, accepted by many retailers and even some restaurants!) or your WeChat wallet.
SHOP 50% OFF!
Both Checkers and PicknPay do this amazing thing that you’ve probably seen, and maybe even already buy. They mark down items by 50% (or more sometimes) that have a BB (best-before) date of that day. Items they need to sell today.
I’ll be honest, I used to feel slightly embarrassed buying these. I felt so poor! But weighing up how much I’m saving, I now shop around for these 50% off deals with confidence! Why would I do this if I can afford the full-priced item, you ask?
No seriously. Did you just ask why I would pay half price for something when I can pay the full price? GIRL! Because I only need to pay half the price! That’s why!
Except for the fruit and vegetables, all the food items are still perfectly fine and can actually still stay perfectly okay for another 2/3 days. (Check all fruit & veg for soft or browning spots first.) These stores have to sell them on or before the BB date. And the best part? I pop their soup packets, the pizzas, the delightful brownies, or the chicken pot pies right into my freezer for another night’s dinner. Meal SORTED. For half the price.
Some stores do this first thing in the morning, other do it between 3&5pm. Have a look at when your store marks theirs down. And do it with confidence!
Ok seriously now, raise your hand if you have ever popped into the mall for one item, and walked out with a couple bags – some of which you will now have to hide from your husband… #righthere #guiltyascharged #dontlietoyourhusband! (< blog)
The more you go to stores (good intentions or not), the more money you will spend. If you must run several errands, choose one day a week and run all your errands in one day. Yes, it can probably make you more pressed for time, but less time to dawdle and shop! If this cuts into your weekly shopping, try online shopping.
You can do it!
These tips are from my experiences as mama of four. I will still do a thorough and in-depth blog on budgeting for beginners, Christmas shopping on a budget, apps that will help you with saving, budgeting and reward you for doing so. If you have any tips you feel I missed, comment with your favourite saving tip and I will credit you with it.
Having shopping and happy saving!