Tag Archives: saving money

Top 10 Tips for Saving Money on Your Weekly Shop



Top 10 Tips for Saving Money

on Your Weekly Shop

Last week saw the very welcome announcement of free school dinners for infant school children, which will help many families (us included) from next September. But there’s no escaping the fact that feeding our families is becoming more expensive.

As food prices rise, it’s more important than ever for parents to shop and cook savvy in order to provide good, nutritious food. As a biggish family with one income we have implemented several money-saving policies in order to keep our weekly shop affordable. These include:

  • Choosing meat and fish on multi-buy offers and freezing it until required.
  • Purchasing one bottle of wine instead of two!
  • Buying detergents and cleaning products from budget supermarkets such as Aldi.
  • Potty training! The sooner we no longer have to buy nappies, the better.
  • Using our breadmaker – homemade bread is so much more tasty and cheaper.
  • Drinking tap water instead of fruit juice (better for your teeth too).
  • Slow-cooking cheaper cuts of meat e.g. pot roast beef for Sunday lunch cooked in stock with a splash of soy sauce and a blob of mustard. This also makes great sandwich fillers for the week ahead.
  • Making soup with any leftover veg from the fridge.
  • Filling out dishes such as cottage pie and spaghetti Bolognese with lentils, carrots etc. to make the mince go further.
  • And saving the best til last – baking! Homemade cakes, biscuits and flapjacks taste so much better than shop-bought and are SO much less expensive.

World’s Biggest Coffee Morning

Summer Fête Lemon Cakle

And on the subject of baking, why not do a good deed this week? Bake a cake for the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning on Friday.

There’s bound to be bake sale near you (I’ll be sneaking off from work to join the one at my son’s school). Check out their website here http://bit.ly/18CFOL8



How about baking this fabulous Lemon Cake from the 2014 Dairy Diary?

It cuts into 16 squares so will make plenty of money for a brilliant cause.


Dairy Diary A-Z of Saving Money

The Dairy Diary A-Z of Saving Money


Dairy Diary A-Z of Saving Money

I usually pride myself in my (mortgage aside) debt-free existence, but following a hefty garage bill, Christmas and family birthdays, I’m afraid to say that my bank account is the wrong hue at the moment, looking decidedly scarlett and not very noir at all! 

SO! I am now on a determined mission to return it to a beautiful black as soon as possible.

As well as having a good stint
on Ebay selling our unused or
unloved items, I have consulted
the Dairy Diary saving money tips.

See for yourself, there are some great ideas here. By the middle of Feb, I hope to have mission accomplished.

Dairy Diary A-Z of Saving Money

Avoid buying new if you can get great quality second-hand

Visit www.uk.freecycle.org for free items local to you or search on Ebay (sort by nearest distance) for low cost articles you can collect.

Buy more plants!

It is often cheaper to buy three small plants than one large one. They will establish themselves quicker and cost less.

Contact your utility supplier if you are over 60

If one member in your household is over 60, check if there are any offers available from your utility company.

Direct debit

You can often save money on bills by opting to pay by direct debit. Most phone and utility companies offer this form of payment.

Energy saving

Only boil the water you need to make a drink or cook your vegetables and put a lid on pans. Rather than leave electrical goods on standby, switch off at the plug. Visitwww.energysavingtrust.org.uk or call 0300 123 1234 for more details on how to save energy.

Fabric remnants

Visit a local market or jumble sale for pieces of pretty fabric. Use these to cover cushions, produce a trendy patchwork throw, or wrap around a plain canvas for stylish artwork. An instant uplift for any room! Visit www.makeitandmendit.com/how-to-make-fabulous-cushions-from-old-clothes for more great ideas.

Get a water meter

You may be able to save money on your water bills by installing a water meter. Visitwww.moneysavingexpert.com/utilities/cut-water-bills to find out if it is a suitable option for your household.

Have a day out

Check out local press or websites for free local events.


Make the most of your savings with a cash ISA (Individual Savings Account). Visitwww.money.co.uk/savings-accounts/tax-free-savings-accounts.htm to compare the best available.

Join a club

Garden enthusiasts, consider joining the Royal Horticultural Society www.rhs.org.ukAfter your initial membership fee you will enjoy free entry into gardens and reduced prices for shows. If you love parks and historical buildings, consider becoming a National Trust member www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Kick the habit

If you are a smoker, consider giving up. Apart from the obvious health benefits you will save lots of money too. Visit http://smokefree.nhs.uk for help and to find out how much you will save.

Lower your phone bill

Visit www.uswitch.com to find out about cheaper call costs. There may be some cheap companies not listed. Check out www.moneysavingexpert.com for up-to-date information.

Mobile phones

If your mobile phone account gives you free ‘cross network’ minutes, it is often cheaper to call another mobile phone from your mobile phone than from your landline, which can be very expensive. If you use your mobile phone infrequently, it may actually be cheaper to swap to a Pay as You Go account. Visit www.uswitch.comto compare.

New car

When thinking about buying a brand new car visit www.which.co.uk/cars/choosing-a-car/buying-a-car/hot-car-deals to find the very best of the current deals available.

Open a store card

If you plan on spending a significant amount in one shop, it is worth applying for a store card. Various shops offer 10 per cent off the total amount spent when you open an account with them. Cut it up straight away, though, to avoid further temptation and pay off the balance immediately!


Time for a change? Revamp tiles, kitchen cupboards or shabby furniture with a lick of paint. Much cheaper than new ones!

Qualify for points or cashback

If you pay your credit card balance in full at the end of each month, consider switching to a credit card that offers cashback or other benefits such as airmiles or vouchers. Visit www.moneysavingexpert.com/cards/cashback-credit-cards

Review your life insurance

It’s worth shopping around for a better deal on your life insurance. Call 0800 316 3166 or visit www.lifesearch.co.uk

Switch your gas and electricity supplier

Visit www.energyhelpline.com or call 0800 074 0745 to find out which is the best deal for you. Simply give your address and energy usage (refer to an old bill) to discover which supplier is the cheapest.

Treat yourself to a weekend break

Shop around travel agents or visit websites such as www.lastminute.com for bargain breaks one or two weeks before you plan to depart.

Use loyalty cards

Ensure that you hand over loyalty cards every time you shop. Most stores, including Boots, Homebase and Tesco, offer points when you spend with them. Save up your points for a treat or to use in the run up to Christmas.

Visit the Citizens Advice Bureau

For information on what credits and benefits you may be entitled to visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau or go to www.adviceguide.org.uk


For money-saving advice, visit www.moneysavingexpert.com

X high street stores

Scour your local charity shop for new or nearly new clothes. Look out for your favourite brands – many shops sell clothes that are so new the labels are still intact.


Visit www.yahoo.co.uk to send an email to a long-distance friend. It’s cheaper than sending a letter. www.123greetings.com to send a greetings card.

Zero % interest

It’s best to pay off your balance every month, but if you do owe money on your credit card switch to a company who offer zero per cent interest.

Visit the Dairy Diary website for more information.

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