Budget-friendly 50p meals to help the nation this Jan

Cost conscious UK adults who shop around are collectively spending a staggering 1.5 BILLION HOURS more each year grocery shopping than those who shop in one store, trawling multiple supermarkets in the hopes of bagging a bargain, according to Tesco data.

Almost two thirds (62%) of the nation claim to shop around, spending on average 86%** more time grocery shopping each week than those who shop in one store. Those who shop around spend on average 77.22 minutes per week grocery shopping, compared to 41.55 minutes for those who shop in one store. One in ten (11%) of those who shop around are willing to visit five or more stores in one day to bag a bargain, while almost a quarter (24%) will visit four or more.

Of those who shop around, one in ten (11%) claim they happily visit numerous stores to make savings as little as £1, with 40% willing to do so to make savings of under £5.

Distance is also no barrier to Britain’s thrifty shoppers, with nearly a fifth (18%) happily travelling over twice the distance for a good supermarket deal (UK adults travel 2 miles on average to their nearest supermarket, while 18% of those who shop around will travel five miles or more to save money)

Yet despite their best intentions, less than half (46%) of the people who travel the distance for a bargain usually find the deal they made the journey for. Additionally, two thirds (66%) of those that visit multiple supermarkets to get the best deals end up spending on average £9.58 more than they intended.

Shopping around most popular in January

The notion of ‘shopping around’ is continuing to grow in popularity in the UK, gaining traction with each generation – 73% of 18–34-year-olds in Britain shop around, dropping to 62% of 35-54 year olds and further still to 54% of over 55s.

After the expense of Christmas, however, January sees ‘shopping around’ peaking in popularity. A third (32%) of UK adults say it is the month they are most likely to shop around in, with thrifty shoppers set to spend an additional 2.1 million hours bargain hunting in supermarkets this month compared to any other month.

Even some shoppers who don’t normally shop around say they do in January, with one in ten (11%) of those who normally stick to one store venturing elsewhere in a bid to save the pennies.

Despite this, over half (52%) of the nation feel they don’t have enough free time to do the things they enjoy in life, with many wishing they could swap the time spent grocery shopping for spending time with family (37%) and friends (24%).

To help the nation save time and money in 2022, Tesco is helping customers to save themselves a trip with their Aldi Price Match, matching the price of hundreds of items to allow its shoppers to get great deals without having to dedicate additional time trawling multiple stores.

Additionally, with its data revealing that one in five (20%) people will run short of money before pay day this month, Tesco has partnered with Instagram money influencer and savvy-shopping mum, Gemma Bird AKA Money Saving Mum Official, to share a series of tips and spending hacks to save time and money.

She says “Smart preparation is key to making your shopping budget go further, and that doesn’t necessarily mean going store to store searching for a bargain.

“Many of those that shop around to get the best deals end up spending more money (on average £9.58 extra) than they intended and travelling further than other shoppers, according to Tesco data. Therefore, the amount of time you waste and petrol money you burn through will soon mean you’re no longer making any kind of saving.

“To help, I’m sharing some of my top tips for shopping smart to make the most efficient use of your budget – and your time.”

Before You Go In Store

1. Make a meal plan to help structure your shopping list

2. Do a cupboard and freezer rummage to see what you already have in the house – can you build a meal around that? I always find so many hidden gems in the back of my cupboards or buried underneath things in the freezer

3. Jump online and see what deals are about that week. Things like Tesco Aldi Price match are a real time saver. You can check out the hundreds of price matched products available in store that week before finalising your shopping list and going in store. You can also tailor your meal plan around the offers available to ensure you’re always making budget-friendly dishes: https://www.tesco.com/groceries/en-GB/zone/aldi-price-match

4. A few times a week, why not make a change from meat and fish? When you are meal planning look at where you might be able to do some savvy swaps for veg or pulses instead. Good for the budget, your health and the planet.

In Store

1. Now you have your shopping list, try to stick to it. According to new research from Tesco, 66% of those who go to a store for a specific deal end up buying more than they intended and spending more – that adds up over time.

2. Buy in bulk and batch cook, especially when staples such as mince are on offer. You can make a delicious Bolognese or chilli, then divide it into portions and keep it in the freezer. This will not only save you money but is also a big time saver for a quick mid-week dinner.

3. Have a go at switching things up and go unbranded for a week- simply try a supermarket own brand vs your normal brand name product. There are great savings to be made and you might be pleasantly surprised by your swaps.

4. Don’t be purely guided by price when you are shopping. Check out how many grams, sheets, portions you are getting for your hard-earned money. Sometimes the cheapest pack is not the best value for money.

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