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Are specials really special?

Those sale sheets, should be looked at and you shopping list planned around the sales items

You see specials listed somewhere and think wow I should go buy those. I used to have that mentality, especially before I started meal planning. It cost me a lot of money in wasted food.

Is it available at that price elsewhere?

I have found sometimes that a favourite supermarket chain marks something like a special, only for you to find another supermarket chain sells the exact same item at the same price, not on a special deal.

Remember that comparing prices is important. If your store has online shopping, log on and do a price comparrison.

Do you really need it?

Often just the word ‘special’ gets us wanting to go shopping. Before you even step out of the house, think carefully.

Do I really need it? How far am I going to drive to get it? Distance is not only your time wasting factor but also your petrol cost. If the mark down is not 10% or more travelling 20 minutes to get something isn’t worth it. Unless it is literally highway driving only.

Are you going to use it?

If you are going to buy the item just because it is on special, then you are wasting your money. If you can incorporate it into your meal plan fairly soon then buy it.

I used to be guilty of this. I would see something on special and buy it, then it would sit in the fridge going off, or in the back of the freezer. If it was canned goods or pantry goods, it often sat quietly in the back of the cupboard inching it’s way towards the best before date or becoming a weevil breading ground.

Can you use it all?

The fruit and veg stores are often the best ‘offenders’ with their bulk specials. Their specials are truly special, however, unless you have a large family or are prepared to spend time prepping, blanching and freezing at least a 3rd is going to be wasted. http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/in-your-fridge-and-in-your-freezer/

I know I can easily use 10 kg of potatoes or butternuts but 5 kg of carrots is going to be a bit of a push.

Bulk buying
Are you able to only buy the specials or do you buy extra?

This week one such place is running a special on tomatoes 2 x 1 kg tomatoes for R 25, which is a good price, but unless you make your own tomato sauce or your family eats tomatoes as the fruit they are, you will be throwing out quite a bit.

One way to take advantage of these types of bulk specials is to connect with family or friends. Buy the bulk specials and then divide them and split the cost. Everybody wins this way.

Not only food

Remember it is not only food items that are on special. The same questions do apply however. Are you going to use/wear it? How far are you travelling to get it? Is it really a special price?

How often do you fall for the specials available? When it comes to food specials how often to you throw out that special product because you didn’t use it and it went off?

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