Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Cheerios Challenge

Saving money on groceries means not always being loyal to a particular brand. For our family, we’ll use store brand or name brand items - whichever happens to be the better value at the time. Sometimes, having a coupon on a name brand item makes the item cheaper than the similar store brand item. Although, other times, even with a coupon, the name brand still costs more than the store brand. Add in weekly sales and “buy 1 get 1 free” promotions, and the value equation shifts on a weekly basis.

There is one thing in the Diva household that we are loyal to though, and that is Cheerios.

Daddy Diva is supportive of any measures to save money on groceries and will happily eat store brand yogurt, cheese, bread, etc….but don’t mess with his Cheerios!

So, what is a Deal Diva to do to ensure that we’re not paying top dollar on name brand Cheerios??? The answer is that we know the sales cycle, and we stock up. In our area, Cheerios is usually on sale at least once a month. In addition, there are often exceptional offers available on top of the sale prices every other month or so.

Last week, we were down to our last box of Cheerios. When our supply starts to get low, I start checking the grocery ads. If it’s not on sale this week, then it will be by the next week at one of the local stores.

Here’s the deal I found at Cub Foods:

11 boxes of 8.9 oz Cheerios @ $2 each: $22
1 box of 18 oz Cheerios @ $3

Total: $25

I used $3 in coupons, which brought my total down to $22, and then I received a $10 coupon off my next store purchase for buying $25 worth of Cheerios. This brought my net cost down to $12 for 12 boxes.
That’s just over 10 cents an ounce – a great price for Cheerios!

If there hadn’t been a sale at Cub, I could have waited until this week. Our local Rainbow Foods has their monthly General Mills sale this week where you receive $10 off along with coupons for 2 free gallons of milk when you purchase a certain number of boxes of General Mills cereal at full price. If you had coupons and shopped on Double Coupon Wednesday, you could save even more on the Rainbow Foods deal.

Your Turn: What name brand item does your family refuse to live without? What ways have you found for saving money on it? Leave a comment to share your story!

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