By Stas Bekman.
Published: 10 July 2006
Don't buy things in the first shop you saw them, unless you already know that the offered price is good. A common practice nowadays is to get the customers into a shop, by offering a few items at a huge discount (often as a loss to the shop) and then getting you on other items that you then buy at a premium. Instead, buy the discounted items and move on to another shop.
It's typical for big supermarkets to charge premium for produce. Buy produce in produce shops, and the rest in supermarkets. Study your neighbourhood's shops and learn which categories of products are consistently cheaper than offers in other shops. Equipped with this knowledge, whenever you go shopping buy those particular goods in the shops of your choice, so you don't have to shop around and waste your time all the time.
Using the Internet it's very easy to compare prices in different shops, without leaving your chair. Try services like Froogle, PriceGrabber and others. They are very easy to use and you can buy things online or go into the store once you have found the best price. Be aware of hidden shipping and handling costs though if you order online.
If you tend to shop at the same shops, check whether they have customer appreciation days, when they give 10% and more discount on all or most of all products. Do you shopping on those days.