Though I haven't posted much about this, I'm a huge fan of clipping coupons and maximizing savings to get the best prices for items for groceries (at Stop & Shop) and personal items (at CVS). I just returned from my final shopping trip of the year -- let's see how the savings added up for 2008.
Stop & Shop
On average, I shop at Stop & Shop once a week. I buy a majority of my produce here, among other things, and then supplement with items from Trader Joe's. My typical grocery bill is between $20-$25 per week, so I probably spent around $1100 on groceries at Stop & Shop in 2008. According to my receipt this afternoon, I've saved $336.57 this year by purchasing sale items and clipping coupons -- an annual savings of about 30%!
I love shopping at CVS because I can pick up all of the tolietries and personal items I need for basically nothing. I often leave the store with $20 worth of merchandise for well under $5. If you're interested in learning the extremely valuable practice of shopping at CVS, I'd check out Money Saving Mom's post on CVS 101 here.
According to an email I received from CVS earlier this month, from October 2007 - October 2008, I saved $642.78 from a combination CVS coupons, sales, and Extra Bucks. This doesn't even take into account all of the manufacturer's coupons I used throughout the year. I don't have a record of what I spent out of pocket during that time out, but I know it was nowhere near what I saved. Estimating conservatively from CVS receipts, I usually spend about $50 out of pocket per season, so I'm guessing my spending was a maximum of about $200 per year, when manufacturer's coupons are taken into account -- that means I've saved over 300% in the past year!
Here's hoping for even greater savings in 2009!