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We all know the frustration of returning home from the supermarket to find that we've forgotten to buy something important - or worse still - to buy an item and come home to find that you already had several in the pantry!
There is a simple way to overcome this problem - by creating a master shopping list. Before you head out to the shops, you should always write down what you need to purchase, and by first consulting your master list, you won't forget anything, and you'll be much less likely to fall prey to the store's sneaky marketing tricks.
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There are several ways you can begin to create your list:
-You can go through your fridge, freezer and cupboard and list things you already have or normally use.
- You can take a pen and paper into the supermarket and go from aisle to aisle listing the things you would use (although this can be very time consuming.)
-You can visit online grocery-shopping sites and view their lists.
However, I found the best way for me was a combination of the cupboard / fridge method and working with my shopping docket after each shopping trip. It took a couple of weeks to come up with my final list, but with an occasional tweak it has worked well for me for many years.
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I group products together according to departments. For example, I have milk, cream, cheese, yoghurt etc. together, canned goods together, personal items together and so on. You may also like to arrange the items in the order of your supermarket's aisles.
Another trick I use is to have a post-it note pad attached to my fridge. As I run out of an item I write it on a post-it note. This way I can pull it off and take it with me. I stick it on the inside of my purse, so that when I open the purse it’s right there as a reminder.
What tips do you have for efficient shopping so you don't waste money?
I do all my grocery shopping online, Coles do free delivery for orders over $100 every Wednesday and as I don't have a car this is a really good deal!
I also find with the online shopping I can take my time. I shop monthly so I generally start filling my online trolley a week before I plan to order, I can save it part way and go in and out as I think of things, or add new meal ideas.