Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Update: Are warehouse clubs worth it?

Back before my blogging break, I checked out a local warehouse club to decide if warehouse clubs were worth joining.  I determined that, though the prices there are better than your typical grocery store shelf price (my strategy #1 for saving money), they didn't save nearly as much as buying items on sale and with coupons.

Well, guess what?  I joined the local club.

Why?  Because I hosted two large parties withing two days at my home a few weeks ago - one had 35 guests, the other 55.  With many other events going on in the same weekend, I simply didn't have the time or ability to cook from scratch for all those people.  (For those of you who regularly host that many people, I salute you!)

So, I decided to join the local warehouse club and purchase items there for the parties.  I was able to get vegetable and fruit platters, salads, side dishes, and paper goods (even though I said in that article that I wouldn't buy paper goods there).  I considered getting a sheet cake - the price there was far less expensive than any other place I checked - but ultimately didn't get that.

So, with the cost of the membership paid for with the money saved for the parties, I can use the membership for the next year.  So, I took a trip over and relooked at the offerings.

I only came out with 2 gallons of milk (at $2.49, it's the least expensive, full-priced milk in my area), a 2 pound package of yeast, and a package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts.  And that's all that I found to be a good deal, just as I had discovered before.   Surprisingly, I did find store coupons there, which could be combined with manufacturer's coupons to get a good deal.  It is something that I will have to look into.

I'm sure many of you get great deals at warehouse clubs, but I think I will just be running in there for a few items, and I probably won't renew my membership.  But for this year, there are a few good deals to be had.  But just a few.

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