I’ve been battling with myself about how little time I have at home, and how it always seems like I’m working my ass off to keep my house clean, or I’m squandering my time by like watching The Bachelorette while a pile of dishes ages slowly in my sink.
I almost, ALMOST, almost decided to do an online grocery order with Fred Meyer and then I would do a curbside pickup. Then I realized there was a fee attached of $5, and I was probably going to spend less at another store anyway. The estimated cost of the groceries in my virtual cart was about $68, and I think in all actuality it would have been more than that since I was getting things priced per pound, but packaged, and therefore inconsistent.
I went to WinCo instead. Start to finish, it took me a little over a half hour (would have been much less time if more checkstands had been open, since I had a list organized by department and ran through getting ONLY what was on my list, plus two steaks I initially hadn’t included on my shopping list).
My grand total was $75.30. Keeping in mind $9.56 in steak that I hadn’t priced out at Fred Meyer (undoubtedly more money), just in terms of what was in my shopping cart, I saved $2.54.
Does that seem worth it?
Well, that was the raw price of the goods themselves, absent any difference in volume. Without doing the curbside pickup, the savings was essentially $7.54, since the service fee would have been included.
Let’s talk about the quantities.
The meat is a little harder to tell because the packages were already weighed and totaled. It would really be so much easier if I had the meat right here, but I’m at a desk and the meat is 20 miles away. I wish my meat was closer.
I spent $9.91 on chicken breast, in a jumbo pack that has 6-7 breasts in it. Let’s assume that was the same price as Fred Meyer, which was $1.99/lb. That’s probably fine.
The chicken thighs I got were $1.48 a pound, which is a penny cheaper than Fred Meyer. Okay, still a wash.
I also bought a about pound of Meunster cheese for about $5, when I had a 6 oz pack in my Fred Meyer “cart” that would have been $1.50, so I probably spent a little bit more there. But, the one from WinCo was deli sliced, and not pre-packaged. Does it matter? I don’t know.
32 ounce block of cheddar was $5.73 at WinCo and $5.99 at Fred Meyer. FINALLY, SOME CLEAR SAVINGS. lol.
Two packs of extra firm tofu at FM would be $3.58; they were $2.56 at WC.
A quart of whipping cream (I Low Carb Grind in my coffee, friends) was $2.93 at WC and $4.99 at FM.
18 count eggs were about a 50 cent savings.
Corn was about a 40 cent savings; cabbage was priced the same.
I spent more on apples because the only pones under a dollar a pound were Red Delicious (BARF) so I spent more to get Pink Lady ones and nom nom nom.
Eggplant was priced by the pound instead of priced per item at WinCo and I spent about $1.50 more there than I would have at FM, but you should see how big that eggplant is.
Cherries were a bit more expensive, but they were still under $2 a pound, which is a victory. I’ve been paying much, much more for cherries since I have self control issues around delicious foods, and “at least it’s not CANDY!”
Nectarines were a bit more expensive, too. Whatever.
English cucumbers were about $1.00 cheaper for two. That’s a win.
Salad dressing – 60 cents cheaper; toothpaste 17 cents cheaper; canned artichokes 97 cents cheaper.
So, all in all, what have I learned?
- Going with a list was the best idea. It was so much faster, and I avoided impulse buys.
- Even if specific items are going to be cheaper at one store versus another, the overall savings still justifies going to WinCo over Fred Meyer because the net savings, and only having to make one trip, are worth it.
- I am still going to have to find ways to make housework/errands more efficient, but I know now that I’m 100% uninterested in finding convenience options that have an actual monetary cost.
Back to the drawing board.