5 Easy Ways to Save While You Shop

There's a certain thrill you get when you treat yourself to a new wardrobe or restock your fridge with fresh groceries. It feels like a well-deserved reward. While shopping might seem completely harmless, it can be detrimental to your budget. 

Here are five ways to save money the next time you shop.

  1. Leave your debit or credit card at home

Leaving your card at home limits your ability to overspend. Before you hit the store, decide exactly how much money you plan to spend and withdraw that amount in cash. This way, you won’t be able to go over your budget…even if something catches your eye.

  1. Make a list

Making a list, and checking it twice, helps you stay on track to only purchase what you need. If you’ve ever gone out to buy one thing but left the store with five, making an effective list is a great way to prevent this from happening again. Be thorough and thoughtful as you think about what you need so you can follow your list to a T. If you’re going grocery shopping, it’s helpful to visualize yourself walking down the aisles to get a better feel of what you need. You can also check your fridge and see what’s running low.

  1. Find out what’s on sale

With your list on hand, head straight to the clearance section when you get to the store. If you make the clearance section your first stop, you’ll be able to see which items you can save money on. Stopping at clearance first will ensure that you snag those deals before you add full price items to your basket. Just remember that buying something on sale isn’t saving money if you didn’t need it in the first place. Stick to your list.

  1. Compare Prices

This trick is especially helpful when you make expensive purchases like electronics or furniture. For example, if you’re looking to buy a new TV, you can start by choosing which one you want. Then you can search the web or various stores that carry the item you’re looking for. Make a list of the prices you come across and choose the cheapest! You can save big by comparing prices.

  1. Always keep your savings goals in mind.

If you plan to buy a car in the near future or you want to build an emergency savings account, keeping that in mind while you shop should help you be more cautious with your spending. Ask yourself, “Do I really need this?” or “Is spending this much going to help me reach my goals?” before you make a purchase. You can even write those questions on your credit card with a piece of tape as a reminder! Usually, the answer is no and you’ll be able to walk away from unnecessary purchases.


Let America Saves help you save money so you can feel confident about your finances. It all starts when you make a commitment to yourself to save. Take the first step today and take the America Saves pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time. And it doesn't stop there. America Saves will keep you motivated with information, advice, tips, and reminders to help you reach your goal. Think of us as your own personal support system.

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  • Written by Katie Bryan | December 19, 2013

    Keep #holiday #debt in check by setting a #savings plan & sticking to it! http://ow.ly/COU1y

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