Use A Grocery Price Book To Save Money At The Grocery Store

Every month, I play my favorite golf course near the local Air Force Base. And, every time I play, I step onto the number five tee box which is a little par three that is an in between club for me, I’m never quite sure whether I should hit my six iron or my seven iron. I mentally kick myself because I wish I had written down what club I had used last month to hit that perfect shot. It would have been so easy to hit the next one, but I couldn’t remember what I had used before. Now I understand why golfers carry around those little books in their back pockets. You can do the same thing in the grocery store or commissary by using a grocery price book to ensure that you get the best deals on all the items you purchase most frequently.

What Is A Grocery Price Book?

A grocery price book is a running list of the items that you buy week in and week out at the grocery store with their regular prices written beside them in the entry, and it’s one of my favorite ways to save money. Make sure that you also list which store that you find the best deals in for that item. While you may have to go to different stores throughout the week when shopping, the extra effort will more than make up for the hassle when you realize all of the extra savings on your monthly grocery bill.

How To Use A Grocery Price Book

Keep a little notebook with your and record the prices of things you buy at the grocery store or commissary. Start with the items that you buy every week and the brands that you know and constantly patronize. Make sure that you write down the item exactly so you can later compare apples to apples instead of oranges in case you find a good deal somewhere. If I am caught without a pen and paper on me, I often write a note in the notes app of my smart phone or even keep notes on deals in the Evernote app which can be synched to your smart phone, home computer, iPad, or iPod. It is a great tool for productivity and note taking on the go.

An Example Of A Grocery Price Book In Use

Here’s an example that I hope is a little better than my golf game. I am addicted to coffee. I’m actually addicted to the sugar that goes into my coffee, but over the past few years I have been able to switch from sugar to Splenda. I buy Splenda in a box of 400 individual packets, that way I know exactly how much I am putting in each cup of coffee. At my local commissary, a box of 400 packets of Splenda sells for $8.99 or often more. But, then I noticed that the local warehouse club sold Splenda in a giant box of 1,000 packets for $21. Because I had previously written the price of my favorite sweetener down in my grocery price book, I was able to snatch up that deal with no reservations.

Everyone knows that they should compare prices of their favorite items in order to score the best deal, but hardly anyone actually does it. When we are at the grocery store or commissary, no one can remember what the price of that item was at Wal-Mart. That is where your grocery price book comes in. By continuously updating your notebook or note taking device with the latest deals and their locations, you will quickly be on your way to saving a bundle on your grocery bill every month.

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Date published: January 26, 2011.

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Hank Coleman is a Major in the U.S. Army and a writer who focuses on personal finance, investing, and retirement. Hank holds a Master’s Degree in Finance and is currently studying to take the Certified Financial Planner exam. He runs the site Money Q&A and his writing has been featured on sites such as The Motley Fool,, and many others. You can follow him on Twitter at @HankColeman.

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