Grocery Shop At Dollar Stores First

Shop at your local .99 Cent stores or Dollar stores first before your regular grocery stores. Sometimes you can find items like canned crabmeat at the dollar store, where as in the regular grocery store it might have a costly price tag of $6.00 a can! Plan your weekly shopping trip, keep a list while shopping. Know what stores you can get the best prices at.

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By Terri H. from NV

Editor's Note: There is a massive recall of Castleberry canned products due to Botulism, which can be deadly. Some of the smaller stores, including Dollar stores, have been found to still have these products on their shelves. Here is the recall article.

August 1, 20070 found this helpful

I totally agree that there's quite a bit of savings by shopping at dollar stores first. The only caution I would give is to check expiration dates on the grocery items. It won't be a bargain if you get home and realize it's no longer safe to eat. Happy shopping!

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August 1, 20071 found this helpful

I have to disagree about better prices at a dollar store. While I love the dollar tree in my town I have only bought 4-5 food items from them in the past 1 1/2 years. Some items like the chocolate chips are in smaller bags so they don't save you any money. Sometimes they will get a shipment of brand name grocery store items in, but for everyday purchases like canned veggies or canned soups I would go to wal-mart. In fact wal mart can also beat dollar tree prices for shampoo and conditioner(under $1 for brands like suave) and dryer sheets(cuddle soft is around .88). I also never buy candy bars at the dollar tree since wal mart has them cheaper. Make metal notes of prices when you are at your favorite stores so you can recognize the difference between a good deal and a marketing ploy.

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August 1, 20071 found this helpful

I was very surprised to see items such as crackers, made in China. I would never buy any food imported from there.

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August 1, 20070 found this helpful

I also check to see what country they are from. No everyone has the same standards.""

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August 1, 20070 found this helpful

Dollar Tree Brand Dollar stores do NOT have very many good deals on food items, but we have a local chain of stores called "Everything's $1" and they DO have some discontinued items that are pretty good deals, but BEWARE of the PAST PULL DATE ITEMS! Groceries that are to old to sell... These are usually things like name-brand juice drinks (Cranberry mixed juice, etc) & sometimes boxed items too. So if you're buying something old, or that has sat on the shelf for to long, or is in there because of damage, then think twice. If I think it's to good of a deal or I wonder why it's there, I check the "Date Stamp" on the bottle or box to see if it's past pull date. Common Sense goes a long way!

PS. The poster was right about the smaller packages on some things (like chocolate chips) Be careful of that too.

---> And BTW, Walmart doesn't always have the best prices on food. We have Fred Meyer Stores here in Washington (owned by Krogers) & their sale items on most things are cheeper that Walmart's prices by AT LEAST 50 cents! For example name-brand TV dinners will cost $3 on sale at Safeway, Walmart regular (no sales there) price $2.50 & they cost only $2 at Fred Meyer's. The Yogurt & many other things can be cheeper on sale at other stores that at Walmart.

---> Another thing I don't think many people know is that ALL STORES, including Walmart have different prices at different store locations depending on the other store's prices around them. (Example: Lacey Washington Walmart prices on Friskies caned cat food is 33 cents a can & at the new super store in Federal way it's only 29 cents). And some Fred Meyer stores have "In-house sales" that other Fred Meyer stores do NOT have! And BOY-oh-boy do their prices vary store to store! You can bet your bottom dollar that if you live in a "High-End" area you'll pay more at the same chain than if you live where people have less money! .... I find this so very strange, just 15 miles apart & waaaay different prices. My mother did direct delivery pricing for Safeway for many years & she tells me this is "standard operating procedure" for ALL stores!

* But the VERY BEST DEALS can be found at the Stores that sell mostly "Discontinued Items"... Say, a brand changes their label or formula or discontinues an item all together. These "Liquidation" Stores have some really great deals! But as I said above Check That Date Stamp!

* ALSO: Use care when buying food or meds made in China!

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August 2, 20071 found this helpful

I buy Pickles at Family Dollar stores .$1 a jar for good names like Roddenberry's & Heinz .

$2.69 for the Store Brand at Winn Dixie .

I like many store brand items just fine but the store brand pickles at Grocery Outlet ,well I only tried 1 Variety .I won't try another & they cost More .

I Will buy Vlasic for slightly more money at WalMart if I have a coupon & can sometimes get a bigger jar too.

We have Freds & Big Lots they can have some good buys .

But I agree it is best to keep a price chart on paper or in ones brain & check the dates. I have had to return stale food . Once I got some stale candy . I emailed the company & they sent me a lovely box of assorted Fresh Candy .

& I wish the Government made the companies put the Needed Information ,including Dates,Ingredients & Warnings in Print Big Enough to See ,in Clear Print .

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August 2, 20070 found this helpful

I to love the dollar trees and dollar general stores but I make sure to check the date and the Weight of the products against ads for my grocers. Many of the grocers now have dollar sections in your stores Piggly Wiggly and Super Low here in Memphis have them. You can find larger sizes for the same as dollar tree.

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August 3, 20070 found this helpful

I live near Wal-Mart's home office, and yes, the prices differ from store to store, even in our area. Prices are driven by the economics of that geographical area. They are cheaper in areas that have more competition, and higher in areas with less competition. When there's no competition around, people have no choice but to pay the price if they want the item. Where there's lots of competition, they can go somewhere else to shop, so the store lowers the prices to lure shoppers. Running a store is a business--they don't cater to poorer people with lower prices, even though that may seem like the more ethical thing to do.

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August 3, 20070 found this helpful

I live near Wal-Mart's home office, and yes, the prices differ from store to store, even in our area. Prices are driven by the economics of that geographical area. They are cheaper in areas that have more competition, and higher in areas with less competition. When there's no competition around, people have no choice but to pay the price if they want the item. Where there's lots of competition, they can go somewhere else to shop, so the store lowers the prices to lure shoppers. Running a store is a business--they don't cater to poorer people with lower prices, even though that may seem like the more ethical thing to do.

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August 17, 20070 found this helpful

I have noticed that the generic brand items are less likely to contain high fructose corn syrup. My hubby and I are allergic. I recently bought a jar of orange marmalade at the $tree. The same size jar (with the HFCS) sells for around $3.oo at a grocery store.

Of course, my favorite grocery store is Aldi.

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September 28, 20070 found this helpful

Recently, I was out of fruit and having a 'fruit craving attact'. When visiting my local Safeway store, I found that the fruit was waaaayyy overpriced! So I went to my local 99 Cent Only store. I'd known they sold fresh fruit and veggies...but boy, was I ever in for a surprise! There were all kinds and varieties available of both. I stocked up and gave some away. One thing to remember though is the fact that in these dollar type stores, you're not gettin the fruits and veggies freshly picked...so watch out for any that might be spoiled and pass those up. All-in-all, well worh the price.

One more comment...The honeydue melon was at its peek and absolutely delicious! Wish I had bought more.

For those who've never been to a dollar type store, it's well worth the visit. Not all items are 'best buys'...but I'm sure you'll leave with your cart at least half full.

Good luck...happy hunting...and God bless...

twstr

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April 10, 20080 found this helpful

Our dollar store sells canned strawberries and they are very good! I have never seen them available anywhere, but at the dollar stores.

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November 24, 20080 found this helpful

I also agree that there's quite a bit of saving by shopping the dollar stores. There are many of these stores with different names and slightly different merchandise. The thing I get most is a loaf of bread for $1.00 and it's fresh. You just have to know when they deliver it and get it before it disappears.

You really have to be careful what you buy in these stores. It might be only a dollar but a lot of stuff is not worth the dollar but some of it is well worth it. it's all according what you're looking for..i also buy the hard-page children's books for my 2 yr old grandchildren. They are heavy cardboard pages and not easily torn. I try to go to several of these stores to look and see what they have and have been delightfully surprised as what I have found.

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September 14, 20100 found this helpful

I shop our dollar tree for household items like light bulbs, candles, aluminum foil pans, and especially at holidays for stocking stuffers for the kids and animals. If you check the store frequently, then when they have a shipment of name brand items, you will be able to stock up. I have gotten Lysol, Clorox and many other brand names in this way.

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September 14, 20100 found this helpful

I shop at these discount stores too, BUT you must read the labels. First the size of the package. Sometimes the colors in the label are changed so it is similar to a name brand product. And the size is different, much smaller. Also, the most important is the expiration date and country of origin. Some countries don't have the same set FDA standards. You can get off brands, check the ingredient contents. Some foods end up with dye in them where the name brand does not. I am a generic product user when I feel the quality is the same or better. Many times it is, but you must figure net weight against the price. A 1.5 lb package of crackers is not the same as dollar store price for 16 oz. Who does not know 1 # is 16 oz? So 24 oz:16 oz.

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September 14, 20100 found this helpful

I used to buy Hydrogen Peroxide at "dollar stores" until I happened to see the price at my local City Market (Kroger); it was .69 for the same bottle.

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April 9, 20150 found this helpful

We have an Aldi and it is bag your own but the prices are much lower than Walmart. The veggies are fresh. I take my list there and get about everything we need then go to Walmart for the rest.

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April 10, 20150 found this helpful

I was glad to see the "editor's note" about the botulism. I always check the country that the products are from, especially in the Dollar stores and Walmart. I don't want to eat crab or fruit that is not up to FDA standards. Same with tilapia; I love it but if it is from Viet Nam or Thailand... nope, I won't buy it. Just too much pollution in the waters there. Price isn't always the most important thing. Anything that goes in my body or on it, I am pretty careful where it comes from.

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