Student Friendly Tips For Eating On A Tight Budget part 2
Buy Online So You Do Not Overspend
If you have not discovered online grocery shopping yet, then you are missing out. The delivery fees are far less than what you would pay if you were taking a car or taxi. You can shop for the cheapest items and take as long as you like. In addition, you can see exactly how much you are spending as you go along. When you are at the checkout, go through your chosen items and see if you can trim off a few non-essential things in order to save a little money.
Plan Your Meals And Eat Store-Brand Foods
The store brand foods are almost always the cheapest with the exception of special offers, so go for store-brand items almost all the time. For example, store brand biscuits are typically 50% cheaper than the named brand biscuits, and things such as tea bags and bread are often significantly cheaper than named brands.
If you plan your meals in advance, then you may pair up the foodstuff you already have with items you buy at the shop. For example, you may have a little cheese left over, a few frozen peas, and a packet fish in butter sauce. You could buy a cheap bag of mash and store-brand white sauce, and suddenly you have the ingredients for a fisherman's pie.
Search For Supermarket Discounts After 5pm Or 6pm
Supermarkets will lower the prices of their short-dated items through the day. At around 5pm or 6pm, they will start placing their third discounts. It is usually at this time when other savvy shoppers start buying the discount products on the bakery, fresh meat, and chilled aisles. If you are in the vicinity of a supermarket at around 5pm or 6pm, then consider nipping in to see what the supermarket has on discount.
If you are able to freeze the items, then it is even better because you can dramatically extend the life of the product. For example, the Use By Date may say it goes off tomorrow, but if you freeze it when you get home, you can hold it for an almost indefinite amount of time until you want to eat it. You then eat it the same day it defrosts and everything is fine.
The fourth discounts often come before 10pm, and they are usually very large discounts. However, most products are often sold by then, but do keep an eye open for them anyway. There are times when a supermarket is a little overstocked and they have to get rid of a large number of food items with heavy discounts.
Stop Buying Soft Drinks
Not only do they eat a hole in your teeth, they also eat a hole in your budget. They are a waste of money for very little in return. Your best beverage is water, and then a cup of tea or coffee every now and again.
Drink too many soft drinks and you will become dependent on the caffeine, and you will urinate more often, which is a distraction. If you "have" to buy soft drinks, then buy the cheapest store-brand cola that is less than 50p/50c per bottle. There is a very good article about buying stuff on a student budget that may help you make better buying decisions.
Sandwiches Can Be Your Best Friend
Bread is very filling. You would be surprised what a student can do with a single free-range chicken leg. It can become three sandwiches if it is cut thinly enough and spread around nicely. Feel free to buy slightly nicer bread because it is often worth the extra money, especially when you consider what you are saving on other meals.
Sandwiches are your friends because they may act as a snack and a meal. They do not require cooking, and they are easy to store and keep safe. The only downside is that once you make them you have to eat them within two days, plus you cannot freeze them. However, if you are buying bread on discount or on offer, then freeze it when you get home.