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How to Enhance Your Grocery Shopping Experience

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/26/2006 | Women
Unless you hire a personal shopper, grocery shopping is a necessity for everyone. Spending more time and money at the grocery store than intended is all too common these days. With rising prices and fast paced life styles it is easy to feel discouraged with your grocery shopping experience.

How can you tell when grocery shopping has taken a turn for the worse? Simple...the symptoms of a bad grocery shopping experience are easy to recognize. You end up with a full grocery cart but with nothing really worth eating. The solution to the problem is easy with the right planning tips.

The first thing to do is to write a grocery list. This may sound simple enough but there are techniques as to how you put your list together. Jotting down a few items is not enough to control your costs and lessen the time you spend shopping. You need to make your grocery list "work" for you.

But even before you begin to write out the grocery list you need to plan your week's meals. This means deciding ahead of time what you will be eating for the week. By planning ahead you will be able to double up on ingredients that can be used in more than one meal. Also, be sure to make a note of the ingredients and foods that are already in the pantry or refrigerator. This saves you money by eliminating duplicate items and allows you to take advantage of sale items.

Organize your grocery list. Start by organizing your list according to how your grocery store locates food items. Most stores have milk and meat in the back of the store while the bakery and produce are on the sides. By organizing your list you will be able to move through each section of the store more quickly and with greater efficiency. You will also avoid having to back track for missed items or even worse, finding out you must return to the store for forgotten items.

Always bring a pen to the store. The pen will serve two purposes when grocery shopping. First, you will be able to cross off items on your list as you make selections. Second, you can list the costs of your most commonly purchased items, such as milk and bread. By listing the costs of common items you will be able to plan a weekly budget and have a rough estimate of how much you will be spending at the grocery store each time you make the trip. Enjoy the grocery shopping experience and use both your time and money wisely in the process!