Consider Convenience Stores for Savings on Staples
A cardinal rule of frugal living is to avoid entering a convenience store at all costs. Pay at the pump with a debit card and DO NOT enter the store. Convenience stores are designed for impulse buys.
It is time to give convenience stores and gas stations a chance. Just as convenience stores compete to provide the best gas prices, they provide incentives to get you into the store.
Shopping in a convenience store is like going to an expensive grocery store for a loss-leader item. The trick is to discipline yourself to only purchase what you came in for, as impulse buys can destroy your potential savings.
My Sunday ritual is as follows:
- Go to Casey’s and buy a cup of coffee. Bring my own mug so I am charged for only a refill at $.75. Casey’s sells a copy of the Cedar Rapids Gazette for a penny with a cup of coffee.
- Go to Kum & Go and put $20 worth of gas in my tank. Kum & Go gives a free paper with $20 of gas. Spencer fills up his tank as well. I purchase two gallons of milk for $6, which is my best price. Spencer is a good ol’ farm boy and loves his milk, so this adds up to great savings for us.
This way I can get three Sunday papers. This week I cut great toothpaste and dishsoap coupons. I am able to compost one paper each week and I bring the other two to school for the media center. I find that more than three papers is overkill as stores in my area accept no more than three like coupons.
I do my best to purchase sandwich bread from the discount store and keep it in the freezer. Otherwise we purchase bread from Kwik Star. The bread is a very good whole grain quality for $2 per loaf. I only like to pay $1 per loaf, but $2 is still a considerable savings for whole grain.
Kwik Star also sells bananas for $.39 per pound. The bananas are small so the value per pound is greater. They discount bananas to $.25 per pound.
So, consider adding convenience stores to your frugal repertoire. I can get by with a grocery store trip only every two weeks if I take advantage of these great deals for the essential perishable goods.