Price Matching at Green Bay area stores: Is it for you?

August 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Coupons, Grocery 

Have you heard the term price-matching?  It’s when one store will match the prices of a competitor’s advertised price.  Theoretically it can make your life easier because you do not have to run to more than one store to get what you want.   Therefore price-matching can save you time as well as your money.

Some of the biggest name-stores in the Green Bay area that price match are Target, Shopko and Wal-Mart.  They don’t just price-match each other, they price match most of the area grocery and drug stores like the following:

  • Target
  • Wal-Mart
  • Shopko
  • Festival Foods
  • Copps
  • Big Lots
  • Dollar General
  • Family Dollar
  • Piggly Wiggly
  • Walgreens
  •  CVS

The good thing about Wal-Mart’s price matching is that you do not need a physical copy of the ad with you when you want to price match.  At Target and Shopko, you will need a copy of the competitor’s ad.  Each store has the same basic requirements: items must be exactly as described in the ad including size, they will not price-match percentages off or going-out-of business sales.  For more information on each specific policy, read them below:

The bad thing is that it may take a little more time to check out, depending upon the cashier, the manager and the particular store.  I have had great success price-matching at Green Bay East Wal-Mart.

I know of some people who do all their shopping at one of the above stores because of price-matching.  I admit that I do not price-match a lot but it does come in handy.

Do you price-match?  What tips do you have for readers?

Do you know of other stores that price match in our area?

Saving 101 – what’s your wage?

July 29, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Shopping 

saving-101Some people think it’s too hard to save money.  They go to the store for what they want and pay full price.  They don’t see the point of shopping sales and using coupons.  They say it takes too much time.  Here is one example of how taking time is broken down into a wage.

Several years ago a friend (we’ll call her Sam to protect her identity) was wondering how to get started on saving money at the store and creating a stockpile. Sam has three growing boys who figuratively eat her out of house and home. Luckily for her we have a mutual friend who knows how to save big bucks at the grocery store by using coupons matched with sales.

This mutual friend called me and said she took Sam shopping at Target.  It was an “extreme” shopping trip: the cart was overflowing with not an inch to spare.  Sam got very nervous.  She was worried she wouldn’t have enough money to cover the cost of all those items!

The total at the end of all the scanning was $478.34.    Then the cashier rang up the coupons, both manufacturer and Target store coupons for many of the same items. The total came down to $142.10 or a savings of 61%.  In case that didn’t sink in, look at it again:

$478.34
-336.24 saved  with sale prices + coupons
$142.10 or 61% off the regular price!

As an aside, my friends also told me about the attitude of the cashier:

“The cashier was NOT to thrilled when she saw my stack of coupons. She made a “nice” comment about how her mother uses coupons and she thinks it just takes too long. After the total rang up she said she might start using them. Sam’s reaction was awe. She was ecstatic that she got the stuff for her kids lunch pails for such a great price… Totally worth it!

Now Sam has a houseful of food for those growing boys, at least for a while!

It took about an hour of sorting through the coupons to plan the trip with Sam and another hour in the store doing the actual shopping.  I asked my friend if it was worth her time–she said “Hell yes!”

Spending two hours total on one giant shopping trip was the equivalent of making $168/hour because that is how much she saved!  I don’t know about you, but I don’t know many jobs that pay that much.  Okay, I can think of one, but I’m not married to a Packer. 😉

Yes, it takes time, yes it takes planning, but it can be done.   Even a smaller shopping trip that takes you one hour to plan and saves you $20 is a great wage!  You reap what you sow, meaning a little hard work can save you a little or a lot!

Target Green Bay – 30 to 70% off toy clearance

July 25, 2013 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Shopping 

Target Logo

It’s Christmas in July!  Or at least, Christmas shopping for some of us.  Target’s annual July toy clearance is in full swing.  I checked out both stores today and found some really great deals!

Two things to note:  as I’ve noticed in the past, the west side seems to mark stuff down more than the east side.   An item may be 30% off on the east side but I found it to already be 50% off at the west side store.   However, I also found items on clearance at one store that weren’t even marked down at the other.

I was very happy to see everything from Angry Birds to Lalaloopsy to Little Pet Shops and Hot Wheels on clearance.  Now my biggest worry is where to hide all my toys so the kids don’t find them. :-)

Be sure to check out our Facebook page for some pics of all my great scores!

What are your grocery staples?

June 11, 2013 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Coupons, Grocery 

GroceryCart1About two years ago I polled readers, friends, & relatives on items they regularly bought at the grocery store.

I then whittled my list down to about three dozen different items which included everything from:

  • milk
  • eggs
  • butter
  • peanut butter
  • ketchup
  • loaves of bread (white and whole grain)
  • soda
  • I also included all sorts of  popular “dead animal”  choices like
      • boneless skinless chicken breast
      • pork chops
      • ground beef, chuck or round, etc.

Based upon their answers, I shopped all the major grocery stores in our area to find out who had the best regular prices.  (You can see those results here).  Because let’s face it, shopping the sales isn’t enough these days.  It’s what you put in your cart that isn’t on sale that can make a big difference, too!

A lot can happen in two years.  For one thing, my family has completely changed our shopping strategies.  Target now carries groceries.  Olsen’s Piggly Wiggly now doubles coupons and has increased the size of their store.  We’ll be getting a Costco in the fall.

I was thinking about doing the research again to see if there was any differences.  Is that 2011 informal study still relevant?

So I’m asking you:  what are your grocery must-haves?  Help me decide which items need to be on the list!

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