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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

simple solutions: Deals to Meals



It happened again. I was in the checkout line at Walmart and the cashier totaled my transaction. He looked at the register and motioned to the person in charge. As she walked up, the cashier said two words, "price matching." The PIC smiled and used her key to "unlock" the transaction (or whatever they do), so we could finish up.

So here's the deal. Apparently, if you save TOO MUCH money or more than a certain percentage at Walmart, it requires someone to take a second look to see why. Yep, twice now in the last two months. Getting a really good deal on something is a total rush for me--seriously. Getting a great deal on food we eat every day--even better.

photo source
It drives me nuts to see other people spend more than they need to, so if you're shopping at Walmart, and I see an item in your cart that can be price-matched that week, I will hunt you down tell you. :) So far everyone has been super grateful and not thought I was a freak.

One "new friend" grabbed a bunch more of the item she was purchasing--crackers I think, then looked in my cart. "Can the butter be price matched too? And how about those beans?" Yep, yep, yep. Then of course she wanted to know how I did it. I showed her my list and explained how Deals to Meals works. She wrote down all the information and thanked me like a million times. It was hilarious, and fun, and exciting!

photo source
photo source
I can't even remember how I found Deals to Meals, but I LOVE it. It's very simple to use and saves me a ton of time and money. It also works for the way we eat. Feeding my family good, healthy food is important to me. I will scrimp in other areas, but not on my food budget. But seriously, I can't believe how much food prices have gone up! This service really helps me keep my budget in check.

Here's how it works:  



SIGN UP
After a FREE two week trial, you sign up. There's no contract (hooray!), and it's $4.95 a month. Yes, seriously! If I used my list to purchase just my produce, I'd save a lot more than that. The service is available in many states already and they're working on bringing it to all 50 states.

 
GO TO THE WEBSITE
I look forward to Wednesday morning, because that's when the ad prices are listed in my area. The company compares the ad prices of all the major grocery stores in your area to Costco, Sam's Club and Walmart, then rates them:


All the work is done for you!

*I sort by the great and good deals. 

ADD ITEMS TO YOUR LIST AND PRINT
The program is set up so you just check the items you want, create your list, and print it out. It gives you the option to print your list by store or by category.

SAVE
You can go directly to the stores listed, or you can price match at Walmart. If I'm in the area or Walmart doesn't carry a brand I want, I go to the store listed. Ninety-five percent of the time I price match at Walmart. When you get to the register, tell the cashier, "I have items to price match." I like to group everything together when I empty my cart to make it easier. Then as the cashier grabs each item, tell them the price and store you're matching. Example: "Those are $1.39 at Macey's."

Keep your list in your purse.
In the beginning I would do one trip each week for all the items I had on my list. Then when I went back for additional items I needed later, I didn't have my list. The savings for those small trips adds up quickly! And I use my list every time I go to the store.

Use Deals to Meals to build your preparedness/food storage.
This is a great way to simply build your three month supply or long term storage.

Purchase the items you use regularly.
Think about it. If you're purchasing the items you use anyway--when the prices are their best--you have that much more expendable cash in your food budget. Or you can save it for something else.

At $1.19, I did break down and purchase store-bought cookies. I'm not the meanest mom in the world anymore. :)
Write down the original price of the items you purchase while you shop.
I don't do this all the time, but sometimes just for fun to see how much I saved. With the example I shared at the beginning of this post, my total was $56.74. My savings was $50.76, so I saved almost 50%. Score!

* We go through whole wheat Ritz crackers like nobody's business. I stock up when they are on sale for $2.50 a box. This trip I price-matched them for $1.37 a box. (Yes, I bought a dozen or more.) I saved a dollar a jar on Best Foods Mayo and paid .75 for ww lasagne noodles, instead of the original price of $1.88.

Use Deals to Meals menu planner.

As an added bonus, Deals to Meals also compiles a weekly list of menus with the recipes, based on what items are on sale each week. There are great recipes for everything imaginable.

Ready to give it a try? Go HERE. When you sign up for your two week trial, you are required to give a credit card number. There is no catch and it's all on the up and up, I promise. Otherwise, I wouldn't do it. (This just makes it easier when you sign up for the monthly service after your trial.) You're going to LOVE it and thank me like a million times! :)

Disclosure: I contacted Deals to Meals and told them how much I love their service. I also asked how I could help spread the word. They have a great affiliate program, so I signed on. This means I will receive compensation for each person who signs up for Deals to Meals through my site.

14 comments:

  1. I love this idea - especially saving time. My question though -- don't you need the competitor's ad - WM has asked me a couple of times. If they no longer ask I am heading over to try this service.

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    1. Vicki, it must depend on the Walmart, which I've heard. The one I go to has their own ads, but only one cashier has ever checked them. They've all been great and many think it's fun to see how much I save. If I have my list, they see I've done the research. I did go to customer service in the beginning and ask some questions, like, do I have to buy 10 of something to get the price match if that's what the original ad says? (No, at my WM.) Let me know what you find out, I'm curious.

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    2. There is actually a sign at our Walmart that says they DON'T require the ad. Look at your checkout and see if there is one at yours too- it might just be a cashier trying to do a great job and just doesn't realize you don't need to bring ads with you?

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    3. I'm going to look for the sign today. I do avoid her line though, because it takes longer to check out. Thanks for the heads up, McKell.

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  2. Great idea !!!!amazing picture you have capture .This is nice blog and i really like this post .
    Stock Photos

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  3. Kim, you just saved me time. I was using 2 other websites with coupons of course and using weekly ads. I didn't like it at first but after the update this week, I made my shopping list and printed it and it saved so much time. Thanks for sharing. I don't have to spend hours looking at the actual ads.

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    1. Tawnie, I'm so glad! Saving money is great, but saving time AND money, even better. :)

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  4. I just wanted to say that Walmart now has it on their website that you DO NOT need the ads with you to be able to price match. You just tell them the price. Some will ask where at but most arent that concerned with it. i love it. They do have a few rules that need to be followed but nothing super special. Heres a link to their website with the price match info. http://corporate.walmart.com/ad-match-guarantee

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    1. Thank you for the link! I recently found the guidelines actually posted in the Walmart in St. George. They really make it pretty simple.

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  5. I have been using Deals To Meals for a couple of years now and I LOVE them! The recipes are amazing! Every time I make one, my husband and five kids are licking their plates!

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    1. Love it! I'm always on the lookout for recipes my entire family will like (very difficult sometimes!), but I find the ones on DTM to be family friendly and use simple ingredients.

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  6. So was your example purely price matching or did you use coupons as well?

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    1. Purely price matching. I just don't have time to do "couponing," though I admire those who do. :)

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