Aldi is a well-known discount grocery store with its origins in Germany. Since then, it’s spread all over the world, including several European countries, Australia, China, and the United States. It’s continued to expand in recent years, now boasting around 10,000 stores worldwide and just over 2200 in the United States. Thanks to its low prices, ever-changing stock, and interesting finds, Aldi has quite a following of loyal customers.
The differences between Aldi and many typical US grocery stores begin before you even get in the door. You’ll need to show up with your “Aldi quarter” - which is just the quarter you’ll need to rent your shopping cart. With your cart in hand, you’re ready to start saving! Below are the best tips for saving money at Aldi. Although many products are priced lower right off the shelf, there are plenty of tricks to getting the most bang for your buck at this discount store.
Bring Your Own Bags
Before you leave the house, grab your reusable shopping bags (or whatever you’d like to carry groceries in), because Aldi stores do not provide grocery bags. The store takes several steps to keep prices low. You won’t find people corralling shopping carts and you won’t find a limitless supply of plastic bags at checkout.
You can purchase reusable shopping bags at the store, of course, but you’ll save money by bringing any you have on hand. If you’re new to the whole reusable bag experience, Aldi typically sells a few varieties near the checkout aisle. You can grab a thermal bag for your cold items, plastic reusable bags, or even paper bags for a few cents. It’s not the end of the world if you forget yours at home, but keep them on hand if you plan to become an Aldi regular! In a pinch, you can grab one of the empty cardboard boxes from the store to carry out your finds.
Shop the Ad
Aldi keeps their weekly ads right by the front door. Walk inside, grab your ad, and see what’s on sale at your local Aldi store. You can also sign up to see the ad online each week, allowing you to plan your list ahead of time based on the sales they’re running.
Look for Aldi Savers
Aldi Savers items are clearance items, and you’ll find them scattered throughout the store. They’re easy to spot thanks to their bright yellow and red tags which let you know how much the item is marked down and what you’ll be saving. Aldi Savers can be anything - from meat and produce to a plant stand or set of socks. You’ll find a little bit of everything in this grocery store. The Aldi Savers tags also typically have dates listed, so you’ll know exactly how long the sale runs. Don’t sleep on savings, though - great Aldi finds tend to fly off the shelves fast!
Shop on Wednesdays
Why are Wednesdays the prime Aldi shopping day? It’s the day new Aldi Finds show up in the store. Aldi Finds are specialty items that only show up once. Sometimes, they’re seasonal items like gardening supplies or holiday decor. Other Aldi Finds are “dupe” items, meaning they’re Aldi’s versions of more expensive brands. Sometimes, Aldi finds are non-food items, while other weeks you'll score delicious treats. You can find everything from fantastic cookware to firepits among Aldi Finds, but they never last long.
Once these items are gone, they’re gone for good. Since they drop on Wednesday morning, loyal Aldi shoppers tend to make that their shopping day so they get first dibs on the new stock. These Aldi-exclusive brands are for a limited time only.
Use Rebate Apps
While Aldi offers excellent savings in the store, there’s one big difference between this chain and others. Aldi doesn’t accept manufacturer's coupons, so one of the standard methods of saving money is out.
Fortunately, times have changed, technology has evolved, and there are several rebate apps out there. Many of them link up with Aldi, so you can still get added savings beyond what you see on store shelves. Sign up for an Ibotta account, which has a special section for Aldi, to earn cash back every time you shop. Additionally, other apps like FetchRewards give you points or cash for scanning in receipts - from Aldi or any other store. While these apps aren’t the exact same as traditional coupons, they still add up to big savings and you'll leave with more money in your pocket.
Learn the Best Items to Buy
When you make a stop by Aldi, go in knowing that you might not be able to find every item on your list. Aldi is smaller than your typical superstore and their stock doesn't run as deeply. However, certain staple items cost less at Aldi than practically anywhere else. Yes, even the big wholesale stores. It's worth doing at least part of your weekly grocery shopping at Aldi for these items alone.
- Eggs - Because of the recent bird flu epidemic, the price of eggs started to climb in 2022 and continued as 2023 rolled in. They're expensive everywhere, but they're also a must-have item for many households. Luckily, you'll find them cheaper at Aldi than just about anywhere else. Add in the extra savings if you use the rebate apps, as suggested above, and you'll cut down on your grocery bill considerably, especially if you're buying eggs frequently or in large quantities.
- Gluten-Free Foods - If you or someone in your household sticks to a gluten-free diet, you know how expensive those foods get. Aldi launched their own line of gluten-free products, called LiveGFree. The line includes products like bread, baking mixes, snacks, pasta, and more. If you compare prices to stores like Wal-Mart, Aldi's gluten-free line saves you more money.
- Coffee - Most Aldi stores have a surprisingly extensive selection of coffee. They carry instant varieties, whole beans, ground coffee, and even coffee pods. You can grab a pound of ground coffee for around $6, which is a considerable amount of savings compared to many other grocery stores.
- Produce - Aldi's produce selection isn't always as wide as some other stores, but you'll always find the basics (bananas, oranges, apples, blueberries, etc) in stock. Prices tend to be lower, or at least incredibly competitive with other chains, and their produce is excellent quality! Occasionally, you'll even catch some really fun additions like Pineberries, which you won't see elsewhere.
- Meat - This is a big one. It's also another reason to shop on Wednesdays. Aldi starts their deals on fresh meat beginning Wednesday mornings, so you'll find markdowns on everything from lamb to pork chops.
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