Many frugal people love Aldi’s grocery stores for their low prices. They are deliriously low; the prices are great. I start each month with a trip to Aldi’s to get the affordable things they carry.
But. But, I have to be careful what I buy. Some of the items are not as good in quality as I’m willing to accept. The produce is not refrigerated, so tightly wrapped things like portobello mushroom caps may mold. Loosely wrapped items like celery and whole carrots are perfectly fine.
So far, all the dry goods, the canned and packaged things like oatmeal and canned vegetables have been perfectly fine.
The one time I bought ground beef, it had hard things in it. The chicken thighs were very good.
The frozen corn kernels were large and seemed a bit old and tough. Edible if cooked longer. The frozen vegetable medley was fine.
Aldi’s carries special foods too. Organic, gluten-free. They recently announced they will no longer carry foods that contain MSG.
One piece of their lower prices is the smaller square footage of the store. Therefore, they don’t carry every possible thing. I go on to Walmart to get the things Aldi’s didn’t have.
Bring your own bags, or pay six cents apiece to buy them there.
Bring a quarter, you need it to get a shopping cart. You get it back when you plug the chain from the cart in front back into your cart. They don’t have to pay staff to round up carts, and lose far fewer carts than other stores. That’s part of keeping prices low.
Marie Brack is the author of Frugal Living for the 21st Century: Adventures in Using Your Money Wisely. It’s available on Amazon.com in both Kindle and paperback versions.