Four people have shared their strategies for grabbing product from the shelves at Hy-Vee if they're lucky winners of our contest. Here they are:
If I were to have the opportunity to grab whatever I wanted in Hy-Vee I would go for the proteins...meat and fish! Namely the lobster tails in the frozen section.
I am a lover of fish and my husband and kids love meat...any kind!
Next I would hit the diaper isle (they are expensive!)
Laundry soap is a must...soap can last forever.
And I would definately watch re-runs of SuperMarket Sweep for tips. I loved that show!.
I am a loyal weekly shopper at Hy-Vee. Always armed with a personalize pre-printed shopping list I made as a spreadsheet, coupons, the Hy-Vee ad for sale reference and my re-useable bags. My friends and family laugh cause I take grocery shopping so seriously. I have had numerous people ask for my grocery list (Microsoft Excel). Makes shopping easy and you spend less money if you plan ahead. It has a section on there for meal planning (see attached).
I would go straight to the meat section and clear out the steaks, keep going to the pork section, slabs of ribs and then round the counter to the brats (probably grab a few containers of herring as I round the corner) and then ground beef and turkey brats and products, cross the aisle to the chicken section and frozen chicken in bags, then straight north to the frozen fish, back up and go the to the dog food aisle and grab dog food and dog treats, back up and go to the coffee section if I have time and whatever else is in that aisle.
My strategy for the 90 second grab would be to concentrate on the most expensive things that are the hardest to get good deal, the items that are compact and spendy, and items that I need, not that I want. For the most part, I cannot get around buying formula and other baby necessities like wipes. Finding coupons or sales on formula and other baby items that bring the price down to a level that I'm impressed is hard to come by. I would concentrate on items in the same isle (which would take some plotting before the actual grab). The items I would be going for would end up being formula, wipes, baby food, toddler food, pacifiers and other small non-food items. Diapers, while expensive, take up lots of room and I may consider grabbing a box on the way out if there is room, possibly shoving underneath the cart. (The diapers in plastic wrapping are a lot easier to pack in a cart than cardboard boxed diapers.) If there is anything on the nearby end caps that I would like I could possibly stack on top at the last minute, but that depends if I have to be at a finish line at the end of 90 seconds or if time runs out where you stand.
I have been couponing since about March when my husband was laid off of his job for two weeks. While we are by no means struggling to make ends meet, but we are raising a baby and eventually want to build a house. Any money we can save is precious, especially with the economy being so volatile. I decided after speaking with a coworker to check out a web site that give tips on making the best use of coupons. I have a coupon binder that I keep the weekend newspaper coupon inserts. I place any other coupons that I find (at-home printed coupons, magazine clipped, etc) sorted in the back. Every week I peruse the grocery ads (in print or online) and look for the best deals on the "basics", such as milk, cheese, bread, etc. and purchase in bulk when the price (either with coupon or just on sale) is right. Sometimes there are items that I wouldn't normally buy, but if the price is cheap, I'll pick them up (processed snack foods, treats, etc.) The price on produce varies greatly from store to store and usually weekly there are a couple of fruits or vegetables that are bargain priced. It has worked out that it's cheaper to eat healthier! (Who would of believed that!) By shopping around, keeping a mental list on how much you usually spend on certain items and striking when the time is right, I shaved quite a bit of money off my monthly grocery spending (with and without coupons!)
cash register boxes and ATM machine
maybe a thank-you card if time left