I have 376 school lunchboxes to pack between now and next summer – YIKES! In addition to saving on all of the fruit, vegetables, bakery and deli items that I’ll pack, pre-packaged lunchbox items are another easy category for savings at the grocery store by using the Flipp app! I commonly stock up on 100% juice boxes, granola bars, pots of fruit sauce, and yogurt tubes (they freeze well!). Before filling our pantries and fridges with lunchbox items that “seem” like a good deal, though, there are a few things to be mindful of:
Know your needs
What are you permitted to take to school when it comes to nutritional ingredients, allergens, and packaging?
Know your limits
How many lunchbox items will you need by the end of the school year and/or the product expires?
- I have 160 lunchboxes to pack before Christmas (80 days x 2 kids)
- 96 lunchboxes between New Years and March Break (48 days x 2 kids)
- 120 lunchboxes between March Break and the end of the school year (60 days x 2 kids)
Know your prices
Keep an eye on sale prices and stock up on your favourite items when they’re on sale. Try to match the sale price with other layers of savings such as coupons, store perks, specially marked packaging with coupons or useful offers, cash back rebates, etc.
The absolute EASIEST way to keep an eye on prices and be ready to stock up on back to school lunchbox items is with the Flipp app! I’ve been an avid Flipp user for over a year now and have been able to save hundreds of dollars and a WACK of time. Here’s how!
How to Use Flipp to SAVE time & money on groceries:
Step 1. Find out if an item you want is on sale this week by typing it into the search bar of the Flipp app
Step 2. Based on the search results, choose the flyer that has your item for the lowest price this week, regardless of where the store is located
Step 3. Add that best price to your Clippings List by tapping on the item
Step 4. Buy the items on your Clippings List and enjoy your savings, knowing that you bought your items at the lowest price offered this week without having to scour the paper flyers on your own!
Yah … but …..
How can Flipp help me save money if the best price is at a store that’s far away?
No prob! Simply flash the Flipp app at the cashier of your local store that price-matches! Walmart, Giant Tiger, and Real Canadian Superstore are my three favourite stores to price-match in my neighbourhood.
It doesn’t make sense to pay for an app that will save us money.
Apparently the folks at Flipp agree – it’s a FREE app available for iOS and Android!
I don’t buy processed or packaged foods for our lunchboxes.
Try searching for the best prices on fruit, veggies, dairy, meat, etc. Then price-match them and save on ALL of your grocery needs! One of my many saving mantras is “Grapes are always on sale, somewhere!” Here’s my blog post with 4 Ways to Save on Fresh Produce.
I don’t have a data package on my mobile device.
Even though many stores offer free WiFi access now, there is the odd “dead zone”. To remedy this, the Flipp app has a great cache system. Simply open any flyers that you might want from home or wherever you’re connected to the internet. Then when you’re out shopping, anything you’ve previously opened and/or clipped will be accessible without internet connection when you open the app next!
I get embarrassed about holding up the line when I’m trying to price-match and/or use coupons.
Fumbling through paper flyers while trying to organize our items on the conveyor belt can trip up even the most seasoned couponer or price-matcher. Flipp makes checking out while price-matching SO much easier! I put all of my regular items on the belt first and put a divider bar down before placing my items to price-match in order as I scroll through my clippings list on my phone or iPad.
- Me: “I’ve got a few items to price-match after the divider bar”
- Me: “Grapes are on sale for $.99/lb at FreshCo. this week”
- Show the cashier the sale price on your Clippings list
- If the cashier needs to scrutinize the date, size, brand, etc., simply tap the clipped item and it leads directly to the online flyer with all of those details.
- Cashier: “My oh my, you’re a smart shopper.” *
- Me: “Why yes, yes I am!”
Hmmm … I really must shoot a quick video to show how fast and simple it is to save time and money at the grocery store with Flipp. Stay tuned! *some parts of the example transaction may be exaggerated!
When we registered at The Bay for our wedding 9 years ago we both loved the Denby Storm pattern right away and I have secretly wanted to accessorize them with purple for every day since! We use them as our every day dishes, dressing them up with gold or silver chargers on special occassions; we didnt’ want to spend money on a colour that we might tire of eventually.
To my delight, I found these great purple chargers on for $.69 each today in the Hallowe’en clearance section at Michaels and scooped up 8! The clearance section had a lot of generic items that could be used throughout the year – basically all black, orange and purple ribbons, craft supplies, glitter, etc. was marked down 80%.
I also bought new foamie stickers and craft kits for next October and mixed them in with the odd’n’ends left over from this year so they’ll look “new” next fall! These old margarine containers from Price Club (yes, that dates them a bit!) are perfect for storing crafts and the kids don’t have to dump the whole thing to access the ones at the bottom. And if every child has their own cup to put the sticker backings into, it’s as close to a no-mess craft as you can hope to get!
The reason I went into Michaels in the first place was to buy a birthday gift for our son’s classmate’s party tomorrow. There was a 50% OFF any 1 regular priced item coupon that expired today and I found some great Melissa & Doug wooden beads that I hope she’ll like. The Michaels app is one of my favourites and I rarely print or clip their coupons any more, but simply flash the app at the cash.
I usually try to visit Michaels after each major holiday to see what’s in the clearance section – I’ve bought numerous candles, crafts and decorations in recent years. I thought that I’d missed out on the Hallowe’en clear-out this year; 2 weeks is usually pushing the limit. Finishing my wedding registry wish list was an unexpected surprise!
*it’s funny to think back at how “techie” we felt using the scanner/zapper gun to choose our registry items at the store 9 years ago. Now calling up a mobile app is common place.
Times have changed.
My love of purple hasn’t!
Today is day 2 of keeping a tally of the number of coupons I use in a month and I’ve already hit the half-way mark of my monthly savings prediction. Whoops! I think I had “groceries” on my mind, and hadn’t considered the high value coupons that I often redeem for household items and personal care. And today’s Customer Appreciation event at Shoppers Drug Mart resulted in a whole lotta savings: savings that are all part of our strategy to permit me to stay home with the kids as a Save-at-Home-Mom! You can read all about my trip to Shoppers Drug Mart in my post on Canadian Coupons.
Day 1 – 12 coupons used for $13.96 in savings
Day 2 – 13 coupons used for $62.85 in savings
Month to date: $76.81 saved by using coupons
Click on my Coupon Tally UPDATE October 2 .pdf file for full product and coupon details (plus a few ramblings of an Extremely-in-denial -that-she’s-Extreme Couponer). And please do drop a line if you’d like help finding some of these coupons to add to your monthly savings – I’d be more than happy to help.
Christa Clips ~ October 2, 2012