Food Prices Are on the Rise: Ways to Save Money When Grocery Shopping

by Lauren Boisvert

Food prices are rising, but we have some tips for saving money at the grocery store, courtesy of CNBC, plus some tips of my own that I’ve learned. Food prices have risen 7.9 percent from last year, with another 1 percent increase in February. According to the Consumer Price Index, this is the highest prices have been in 40 years, since 1982.

So, with that in mind, what can we as consumers do to lower our grocery bill? First, we can use store apps from Walmart, Publix, Target, Kroger, etc. to use coupons and get rewards. Additionally, store credit and rewards cards are helpful if you’re in the market for a credit card; the Target Red Card saves you 5 percent on every purchase, and the Kroger debit card saves you 2 percent on Kroger brands plus fuel rewards.

In the realm of apps, cashback apps like Ibotta, Receipt Hog, and Fetch are great for getting rewards and cash back. Just select your rebates before shopping, then snap a picture of your receipt and get money back. The catch with rebate apps is that you have to match the rebate exactly, or it won’t count. This includes certain sized items, or specific brands. It pays to pay attention.

You can also plan your meals so you’re only buying the groceries you need. Additionally, never go food shopping when you’re hungry; you’ll always end up buying more than you need and spending unnecessary money. You can also stick to store brands, as generic brands tend to cost less for essentially the same product.

Tips to Save Money Amid Rising Food Prices

It’s also important to shop strategically, according to CNBC. This means buying in bulk, or frozen vegetables vs. fresh or organic. My strategic shopping tip is to shop exclusively at Aldi, if you have one. I live for Aldi, as its low prices have cut my grocery bill in half. I bought a loaf of bread for 75 cents the other day! At Publix, the same loaf of bread would be $2.85. I’m not sure why the prices are so low at Aldi, but I do know there’s always something new to discover there.

We mentioned using cash back credit cards earlier, but it’s important to use the card that’s going to give you the most money back. There are some general cash back rewards cards, like the Citi Double Cash Card which gives you 2 percent back on any purchase. But, the store-specific cards may get you the best deal. According to CNBC’s roundup of the best cash back rewards cards, the American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card can get you up to 6 percent specifically on groceries.

There are so many different ways to save money in this day and age; these are only a few tips. But, be sure to share your money saving tips with us, we want to know!