Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Dominion vs. Price Chopper

So part of my new years resolutions was to start cutting back on my debt and one of the ways to do this is to cut back on some of the costs that I incur on a regular basis. Part of the controlable costs that I splash out on each and every pay is food. Yes I know that there's a drastic difference in your available money if you do the simple things like bringing lunch and not eating out. How drastic? Well considering about the cheapest lunch I can get is a 5$ at our office cafeteria, compared to an extra $1 or 2 by making some extra food at home and brining it in. Over the course of a pay lunches alone will add up to 20$; nothing huge but over a year that's $520. Now that's something. Cutting out eating out from 2 times a week at 50-100$ each time for two people plus booze to 1 is using the lower end numbers $100 per pay and about $2600 per year.

So eating out 50% less and brining lunch from home is already upto $3120 savings per year! That's nothing to laugh about anymore, that's either a lot less debt or a pretty fucking nice vacation. And we won't go down the road of how much could I save quitting smoking and cutting back on the booze just yet.

BUT this isn't what really blew me away a couple days ago. In Toronto there's all sorts of grocery store chains, some like Dominion are more along the upper end of the cost scale. They're nice clean stores and there happens to be one pretty much next door to us. Then they have the lower cost ones like Price Chopper where the stores aren't as fancy and they don't offer a bunch of fancy shmancy 'offerings' but they do have better prices.

I never would have imagined the difference, we went shopping for food for the week and paid about $55 (not a whole week but to get us through a few days) at Price Chopper, this same stuff at Dominion would have cost $75-100, probably closer to $100. Now I know this wasn't food for a whole week but it was enough to give an idea of how much money I can save! I budget about $250 for food for two weeks and this has typically covered off the two of us... give or take and often includes some eating out. Lets say I can cut that back to $175... or even $150 that extra 100 per pay translates to that $2600 a year I mentioned above. This is fucking mind blowing! The food's the same! If I can pull this off, cut back to eating out once a week or even once every two weeks I might be able to save close to $5k this year! That's not shabby! That's a lot of debt going poof while still letting me enjoy myself a bit. I could probably safe a lot more if I went all Kamakazi on it. I've never done the starving student thing but some careful spending and some saving and I might get a very serious chunk of my debt paid off.

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