July 9, 2014

Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget

As college graduates, Julie and I have jumped in the real world of work… and budgeting! As the bills rack up, we’ve learned how to cut costs and decide which things we can (and can’t) live without. As we mentioned in our bio, Julie is a wine-o through and through and I am a fan of a nice brew. In college we loved to spend an evening at Tru Deli + Wine or enjoy a growler of craft beer from Carolina Brewery. However, now that we get to foot the grocery bill, a $20 bottle of wine becomes somewhat of a luxury option. So, we’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to cut costs at the market so that every now and then we can still splurge for a nice bottle of bubbly or a pick-6 of craft beer!

  • Smart Shop: Join a loyalty program at your favorite grocery store. These programs usually have great incentives that will cut costs at the store as well as elsewhere. I frequent Winn Dixie here in Birmingham, and as a result save money at the checkout counter and through their fuel perks program. Winn Dixie is also currently running a neat program where we can buy 4 bottles of wine and receive 10 percent off. This way our bar cart still stays stocked!
  • Make a List: Step one is to make the list. Step two is to stick to it. Sticking to my grocery list is a huge struggle for me. However, doing so can help you avoid purchases you really don’t need. Plan your meals in advance and make your list based on your needs.
  • Avoid Pre-Packaged Meals: Yes, cooking from scratch might take a bit more time but Julie and I have found it can be a fun and enjoyable way to catch up after work. You can also cook up larger quantities and take the leftovers for lunch or freeze for later. Also, don’t be fooled by the individually packaged snacks. These are almost always more expensive when you could just buy a family sized bag.
  • Use a Finance App: I use Mint. This application downloads straight to my phone and I can budget out all of my expenses for the month. It is totally safe and links to your bank account and credit cards to monitor your purchases. It was even listed as a top-ten iPhone app on LaurenConrad.com

These tips and tricks are a good way to limit over-spending at the grocery store. You start to value that dollar a lot more when you worked all week to earn it!

Do you have any other money saving tips you use? Share them with us in the comments section below!

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