The best day and time to shop for cheap groceries, according to a money-saving expert

A money-saving expert has revealed how to buy cheap groceries. (Getty Images)
A money-saving expert has revealed how to buy cheap groceries. (Getty Images)

The cost of living crisis has had an impact on every aspect of our lives, from our household bills, to mortgage and rental rates, travel and especially when trying to find cheap groceries.

No matter where you shop, it’s likely you’ve seen prices of everyday items skyrocket this year.

In fact, recent data from Britsuperstore found that food and non-alcoholic beverages have seen an inflation increase of 18.4% on average, and 75% of people say that the cost of food is among their "major concerns".

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With the average Brit making over 200 shopping trips to the supermarket throughout the year, and spending over £4,200, it’s no wonder we are trying to figure out how to cut costs.

Luckily, money-saving expert Richard Price, the owner of Britsuperstore, has shared some advice on how to save money on your grocery shop.

A man using his smartphone and looking up ingredients from a product while grocery shopping in his local supermarket.
Shopping during the week, either late at night or early morning should get you the best deals. (Getty Images)

Best day to food shop

Price suggests the best day and times to do your weekly grocery shop include:

  • Midweek (Wednesday or Thursday): "Midweek days like Wednesday or Thursday can be good for shopping because many stores release new deals and discounts around this time."

  • Tuesday (for weekly specials): "Some stores have special deals and discounts that start on Tuesday. If your local store follows this pattern, Tuesday could be a good day to find discounts on various items."

  • Monday (for clearance sales): "Some stores mark down perishable items and products with short shelf lives on Mondays to sell them quickly after the weekend. This can be an opportunity to find discounted produce and baked goods."

As for when to avoid doing your big shop, Price says to steer clear of weekends. "Especially Saturday as this tends to be the busiest day for stores," he adds.

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"The increased foot traffic can lead to longer checkout lines and a more hectic shopping experience. Additionally, some stores may not have restocked their shelves yet from the weekend rush, so the selection might not be as good."

Best time to food shop

Now you know the days to head to the supermarket (and the days to avoid) what about the best time to go there? Price says early morning or late evenings are your best shout.

A woman reading the label on a food item while out shopping for groceries in her local supermarket.
Comparing prices is a good way to save money on the food shop. (Getty Images)

"If you can manage to go early in the morning, you might find freshly discounted items from the previous day that the store is trying to sell quickly. Perishable items like baked goods or produce might be marked down during this time," he says.

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"Similar to early mornings, late evenings before the store closes can be an opportune time to find discounts on perishable items. Many stores mark down items nearing their expiration date to avoid waste."

How to get cheap groceries

Along with the best day and time, Price’s other tips for getting groceries under budget include:

  • Use store apps and loyalty programs: "Some stores offer exclusive deals and discounts through their mobile apps or loyalty programs. Check if your favourite store has one and make use of it to save money."

  • Avoid weekends and holidays: "Shopping on weekends or holidays can be crowded, and some stores might not offer significant discounts during these busy times."

  • Compare prices: "Keep an eye on prices and compare them between different stores in your area. Some stores might consistently have lower prices for certain items."

  • Make a shopping list: "Plan your meals for the week and create a shopping list before heading to the store. Stick to the list to avoid unnecessary impulse purchases."

  • Buy in bulk (when it makes sense): "Buying non-perishable items in bulk can be cost-effective, but be sure to check the unit prices to ensure you're getting a good deal."

  • Check for coupons: "Look for coupons in newspapers, online coupon websites, or through the store's app before you go shopping."

"Remember that saving money on food isn't just about the day and time of shopping," he adds. "It's also about smart planning, buying items on sale or in bulk when appropriate, and avoiding wasteful spending."