Shop Smart to Save More

Shopping. Is it a chore? Is it a fun challenge to find the best price for whatever item(s) are on our list? Regardless of how you view shopping, the strategies below may help you shop smarter, so you can put more into your savings account.  

Grocery Shopping:

  • Bring a grocery list with you rather than randomly selecting items.
  • Combine coupons from Ibotta, Checkout 51, Grocery Pal and com. Look for and use mail-in rebates from manufacturers!
  • Plan meals based on sale items in weekly grocery store ads. Flipp has access to weekly circulars from more than 100 stores!
  • Use a calculator while you shop to track the total to stay within your budget.
  • Ask stores for rain checks if a sale item has run out!
  • Keep a list of items you are running low on to have time to purchase those items on sale.

Clothing Shopping:

  • Discount retailers sell overstock and slightly imperfect items for a fraction of the cost!
  • Shop at thrift stores for gently worn clothing at a discount!
  • Understand price tags at outlet stores. If the high price is marked anything other than “Original Price,” such as “Retail Value” and “Compared To,” the item is probably made for the outlet store and often is lower quality.
  • Retailers frequently sell out-of-season items such as swimsuits in December or winter coats in May at deep discounts!
  • Purchase uniforms at discount stores.
  • Gift Card Granny and CardPool sell unwanted gift cards for 10% - 15% less than face value!

Shopping Online:

  • Before making an online purchase, copy and paste the name of the exact item into your web browser to comparison shop for the best price!
  • Leave item(s) you are considering in your online shopping cart on the retailer’s website for a few days and you may receive an email with a discount code!
  • Use the web browser extension Honey to have the best coupon codes automatically applied.
  • Check out Ebates, Swagbucks or TopCashBack for ways to earn cash back from online purchases!
  • The best online deals tend to be offered Wednesday through Friday.
  • Search online for free shipping discount codes or ship an item to the store and pick it up for free!

Eating Out:

  • Order take out for just the entree and add a side salad and drinks from home.
  • Eating lunch out is generally less expensive than eating dinner out.
  • Share a meal. One person can order an entrée, another a salad and then share both dishes.
  • Groupon and LivingSocial send daily emails with offers for local businesses including restaurants!
  • Look for coupons for local restaurants on sites such as Valpak and SmartSource!
  • Follow your favorite establishments on social media to see if they offer promotions or discounts!

For more tips and strategies to help you save, make a commitment to save and take the America Saves Pledge or text “AmericaSaves” to 877877.

Happy shopping!

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Tip of the Day

  • Written by Katie Bryan | December 21, 2013

    Putting aside fifty cents a day will allow you to #save nearly $500. 

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Saving With My Boys

Written by | September 2, 2019

When Kelly was a kid, she loved the picture book A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams. In the story, a little girl lives in an apartment with her mother and grandmother. The little girl’s mother is a waitress and sole provider for their family. Together the family saves money by putting their change in a giant jar every day. They are saving for a big cushy chair for the little girl’s hard-working mother. Together with patience and diligence, they buy the mother a very comfy chair.

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A Think Like A Saver Attitude

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Melissa has always been thrifty with a #ThinkLikeASaver attitude. This served her family well when her husband lost his job in 2014. Using their savings, Melissa’s family stayed afloat while her husband found a new job. During his job search they used a majority of their savings, but that is OKAY. Savings are fluid! They’re supposed to be used in the case of emergency, and this qualified as such.

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#ImSavingFor Winner Story

Written by Lindsay Ferguson | June 13, 2019

America Saves awarded one lucky saver, Pedram R. from California, $750 for sharing his #ImSavingFor story. Pedram said, “Saving is important to me because it proves I am not willing to buy unnecessary things to please others or to be perceived as successful.”

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