Budget Hack: Grocery Store Gifts!
I love scented candles and like to keep some on hand for when an inexpensive “giftie” is in order. The ones at home decor stores are always so inviting with their pretty packaging and price tags which show how much we would have paid full price in a designer shop. One of my favourite budget hacks is finding a grocery store alternative to gift giving and today I came home with 6 of these Air Wick scented candles to use as upcoming hostess gifts. The sale price is in effect until Thursday, October 23, 2013 at the Loblaws family of stores if you’re interested in scooping some up, as well!
- Regular price $9.99
- Sale price $6.99
- I paid just $3.66 each after coupons
Not a couponer? No problem! These tear pad coupons were right there on the display: no coupon binder or advance planning required. The key to this budget hack was making the most of the coupon. Those who are familiar with coupon fine print do have an edge up when figuring out how many coupons can be used together, so if you’re confused about what “one per purchase” or “cannot be combined with other offers” means, check out the guide that I wrote for Canadian Coupons Coupon Fine Print 101: Understanding the Restrictions.
The coupon I found and redeemed is for $5 OFF when you spend $10 or more on Air Wick products. Stretching my savings to the max took a simple calculation to find the “sweet spot” – it turns out that purchasing these candles in multiples of 3 makes them the cheapest and maximizes the coupon value. Here’s an example of what I mean by finding the “sweet spot”:
Buy 1 candle on sale for $6.99, not eligible to use the coupon because total is less than $10
Buying 2 candles works out to $4.49 each ($6.99×2=$13.98 less 1x$5 coupon = $8.98 total)
Buying 3 candles works out to $3.66 each ($6.99×3=$20.97 less 2x$5 coupons = $10.97 total)
Buying 4 candles works out to $4.49 each ($6.99×4=$27.96 less 2x$5 coupons = $17.96 total)
Buying 5 candles works out to $3.99 each ($6.99×5=$34.95 less 3x$5 coupons = $19.95 total)
Buying 6 candles works out to $3.66 each ($6.99×6=$41.94 less 4x$5 coupons = $21.94 total) and so the pattern continues
The price is right, but I would NEVER give a gift from a grocery store!
Some of you may be thinking that you’d never dream of giving a gift that clearly came from a grocery store, no matter HOW much you paid for it. For me, the whole point of a budget hack is getting high quality products for a fraction of the cost by pitching in just a little bit of time + effort. Here’s how I turn these $3.66 candles into hostess gifts to be proud of …
Start by getting rid of any incriminating evidence! Remove packaging, stickers, logos, etc. and don’t leave any goop! Goo Gone is my weapon of choice. For candles, in particular, watch out for brands with labels which are etched or painted onto the glass – they are sometimes impossible to remove!
Shine anything that is glass or plastic. A quick wipe with Windex or vinegar makes a world of difference and bumps the gift up from grocery cart to designer shelf quality immediately.
Wrap with flare! A little cellophane, tulle or tissue paper et voila! Dollarama also sells lovely little mesh bags, funky Chinese take-out containers, and every manner of scarves which make creative wrapping as well. If you’re near a Michaels store, be sure to stop in for similar gift wrapping items and use your 40% or 50% OFF coupons (print or mobile). I NEVER pass a Michaels without popping in for one item; you can usually only use one coupon per visit.
Add a card. A handwritten note demonstrates that your “giftie” was thoughtfully chosen and reinforces your gratefulness for whatever it is you’re thanking someone for. Again, Dollarama and Michaels have very inexpensive options. I particularly like these small ones that were in the $.50 bargain bin at Michaels. There are 8 in each pack!
Keeping a small supply of “gifties” on hand means I’m never caught without something to give to the hostess, and more importantly from a budget point of view, I’m never caught slipping into a boutique or home decor store and paying full price when I’m in a pinch!
Throw in your 2 Cents below! What are your favourite budget hacks when it comes to gift giving? (It’s ok – we won’t tell your friends & family what they’re getting for their next gift!)
Posted on October 20, 2013, in Budget Hacks, Couponing, Savvy Shopping and tagged Budget Hacks, Couponing, easy hostess gifts, Saving on gifts, Spend less on gifts. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.