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The Science of Grocery Shopping

Grocery Shopping

Most of us go grocery shopping when we get paid or when we are low on household items, and we often choose to go whenever we have some spare time—often on the weekend. But did you know that the time and day you hit the grocery store could be costing you? Believe it or not, experts say there is a science to grocery shopping, and if you make the effort to incorporate this into your own schedule, you could really see the savings add up.

Best Day of the Week to Grocery Shop: Overall, the best day of the week to hit the food store is Wednesday. This is because most grocery stores start their weekly sales on Wednesday, and some will even still honor the sales from the previous week—which equals double the savings. Be sure to scout the Sunday paper ahead of time, so you can stack your manufacturer coupons with in-store savings. Or, check out CoolSavings.com for great printable coupons any day of the week. Another bonus to shopping on Wednesdays? Most stores get deliveries on Monday or Tuesday, so food will be fresh on the shelf.

Worst Day of the Week to Grocery Shop: Since Wednesday is the best day of the week to shop, it would only make sense that Tuesday is the worst. This is generally because stores are more likely to be out of stock on sale items, but studies also show this is the most popular night of the week to make a homemade meal—which translates into crowded aisles and long lines of people stocking up on last -minute ingredients. It’s also a good idea to avoid the grocery store on Saturday, since this is just a popular day to shop and food items also tend to be less fresh and more picked over.

Best Time of the Day to Grocery Shop: Typically the best time of day is in the evening around 8 p.m. If you have a 9 to 5 job, this does mean you’ll have to go home and then go back out again, but the luxury of having crowd-free aisles, short wait at the deli counter, and a fast checkout time is well worth it. Fresh ProduceOther good times to go are early in the morning, if possible. And no matter what, never shop hungry, as it’s proven that you will fill your cart with unnecessary and unplanned purchases and go over budget.

Worst Time of the Day to Grocery Shop: So you’re driving home from work, and you need to pick up a few things at the grocery store. Makes sense, right? Well, too bad just about everybody else has that plan too. Whatever you do, avoid the grocery store during the weekday hours of 5 to 7 p.m., as this is prime time for people stopping off on their way home.

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