Christmas is coming, you’re running into the last £3.67 of your student loan for the semester, there are end of the semester parties tempting you, all you have in your fridge is three-day-old takeaway pizza and a can of Red Bull, and your cupboards aren’t looking much better. Know the feeling? I definitely do. So, here’s some top tips on stretching every pound during your weekly shop at Staffs!
Tip 1 – Shop Around. Stoke is a great town in the way that there are quite a variety of different super markets within a short walk over the university quarter. Now, I’m not saying you have to walk to every single one and scribble down prices, before going back and only picking up the best value possible items. You can do a lot of it online. Search up you usual shop items on the Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, etc. websites to work out what’s cheapest, and make a list of the cheapest version of each item on your phone. Then, head out to Aldi, Lidl, or another shop without an online store to compare physically. And start your shop there!
Tip 2 – Make, Don’t Buy. I know, as a student, the temptation is always there to just grab a ready meal for one from the frozen section and be done with it. But wait! Not only can this result in being far more expensive, these meals are also a lot worse for your health than homemade food. ‘But Gee’, I hear you argue, ‘I don’t have the time – or knowledge – to cook my own food’. Fear not, friend! Just because it’s homemade, doesn’t mean it has to be difficult or time consuming! My recommendation is to make things that can be frozen. A personal favourite of mine is to make a large lasagne (using ready-made lasagne sheets and sauces – so it takes hardly any time) and split it into eighths, then freeze these portions individually. That’s eight meals right there, that only need defrosting and reheating!
Tip 3 – Buy Multi! Okay, so not all multi-buy discounts are the best value, we know this – sometimes the shops like to trick us. But some can really help you out, so keep your eyes out for those highlighted price tickets on the shelves of the supermarkets! An expansion on this tip is to make you own multi-buy discounts! What I mean by this is that you need to look into different size packs of things to work out what’s best value. While, generally, the more in the pack, the better the value; this might not always be the case. For example, this multipack of drink has eight cans for £7.75. But the smaller pack of four cans is on special offer for £3. Whilst there’s no actual multi-buy discount here, you can kind of make your own. Get the eight cans you would pay £7.75 for, for just £6. If the maths isn’t that easy, you can always look on the price ticket on the shelf for the ‘price per 100ml/pack/1kg’ bit. This is usually just below or to the side of the main price, slightly smaller, and helps to compare brands or sizes of the same product. This has saved me lots over the years and I definitely recommend giving it a double check when you have multiple options for your item.
So, those are my top three tips on spending little, but not compromising on quality during your weekly shop! Merry Christmas and happy saving!