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Hustle & Soul is a lifestyle blog offering practical advice about food, fitness & wellness. And I'm Diana, the one offering advice. I'm super pumped you're here - thanks for stopping by!

HOW TO CHOOSE WHEN TO DO YOUR GROCERY SHOPPING

BEST DAY OF THE WEEK TO GO GROCERY SHOPPING

I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure I have grocery shopped on every day of the week at one point or another, and during different times of the day, too. From experience I can tell you that not all days (or times) are created equal when it comes to grocery shopping. This post will break it down for you so you can choose the best time to go to make the most out of your trip.


TIME OF DAY MATTERS

I am a fan of doing my shopping during days and times that are outside of peak hours. It makes my shopping more efficient and painless. Peak hours are exactly when you think they are, when it’s most convenient for people to swing by the grocery store. Either on the way home from school or work, during a lunch break, or even worse, on the weekends, especially after church. I highly recommend not going during one of these times unless you love crowds, long lines, and not finding what you’re looking for.

Finding a time outside of these hours may seem a bit inconvenient, but if you can make it work with your schedule, it will really improve your experience. I’ve found that going during the early mornings or late evenings is a good time. Wake up a little earlier one day during the week to knock out your shopping before you head into work. The 7:00-8:00 a.m. hour is usually a ghost-town, which means you get the store all to yourself. If the mornings are out for you, try later on in the evenings. If you workout in the evenings or take your kids to practice or lessons, consider going on the way home after the rush has died down; after 7:00pm is usually a safe bet.

 

CHOOSING A DAY

When it comes to choosing what day is best to do your grocery shopping there are a few things to consider. You may think about when you do most of your cooking, especially for those that meal-prep. You may also think about deals your store may have on certain days of the week. Another thing to consider is when your store receives shipments or when restocking happens. Thinking about your weekly schedule is also important. There may be busier days at work or with your family.

For me, the most important factor is when I do most of my cooking and then I consider the secondary factors, like sales and my personal schedule. Since we meal-prep on the weekends for the week ahead, I like to shop as close to when I’m planning to cook as I can. My day for shopping has changed over the months, but I’ve recently found that Thursday’s work best for my schedule and when we meal prep. I go during the early morning, usually around 7:30am. There’s usually only a few people in the store and this is also when they do most of the restocking, so it’s not often that I don’t find what I’m looking for.
 

BREAKDOWN OF DAYS

Here’s a quick breakdown of the days of the week with pros and cons to consider for each:

MONDAY | Monday’s are tough, regardless of your job. Since it’s the first day of the week, it tends to be a busy day for a lot of people at work or school. Shopping early in the morning on Monday’s isn’t impossible, but getting yourself to work let alone kids out of the house and to school is enough on a Monday morning. Later in the evening on Monday’s is a possibility, however it can make for an extra long day if you had a busy day at the office.

WEEKDAYS (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday) | generally speaking, shopping during the week is better than on the weekends because it’s less crowded, as long as you don’t go during peak hours. Since it’s during the week, you will also probably be faster if you’re fitting it in during a quick hour you have free in your schedule.

FRIDAY | After work on Friday is the start of the weekend, so I consider this as part of weekend shopping. If you can get in early morning on Friday before work or early afternoon before the rush, it’s not too bad, but after that it tends to turn into a mad house.

WEEKENDS (Saturday & Sunday) | If you have to do your grocery shopping on the weekends, do not go when everyone else is there. Most people tend to get up and moving and make their way to the grocery store around 10 or 11am on Saturdays and after church on Sundays. If you absolutely have to do your shopping on the weekends, try to go during the early morning hours if at all possible. If you’re the type to stay in on Saturday evenings - no shame here, that’s me many weekends - doing your shopping later on Saturday evenings, past 7pm or so, is a possibility, too.
 

OTHER TIPS

SALES | Choosing a time and day based on your schedule and peak hours is priority, however you may also consider choosing to go when your store has certain deals happening. I recommend signing up for your grocery store’s email list to be notified when certain sales are happening and you may plan your grocery trip days around that.

HOLIDAYS | Be mindful of when you’re shopping around holidays. This seems like common sense, but sometimes we forget when holidays or events are happening. Things like the Superbowl and Father’s Day can be just as busy as Thanksgiving or Christmas. And can be a real pain the butt if you’re stopping in just to get one or two things.

I once stopped by the grocery store on the way to a friend’s Super Bowl party to pick up a bag of tortilla chips and salsa. Me and half of the city of Memphis had the same idea. So, my expected 5-minute stop  to grab a party snack turned into a 25-minute trek searching for a lonely bag of tortilla chips that were hidden in the candy aisle and waiting in line for 15-minutes to purchase 2 items. Less than ideal.


HOW-TO CHOOSE

Here’s your action plan:

  1. When do you do most of your cooking?
  2. Is there a less-busy day of the week in your schedule?

  3. Is there a day you can make early morning or late evening work?

  4. Are there specific days your store has sales?

Once you’ve answered all four of these questions, decide which day and time works best for your schedule and commit to trying it out for at least 3 weeks. Share your commitment in the comments below!

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