Thursday, July 14, 2011

Frugality: Sometimes Items are Cheaper at a Warehouse Club

I've posted before about Warehouse Clubs, but I figured I'd revisit some things, and share some new stuff I've found out about BJ's specifically.

Why a Warehouse Club membership is worth it:
  • I'd say 95% of the time, they have the cheapest gas in town. Sometimes by 5¢ or more. I use an App on my ipod to see which is cheapest in the area, and rarely is something else cheaper.
  • Propane. At least at BJ's, the propane is significantly cheaper then anywhere else. We're talking like $10 cheaper.
  • Seasonal/clothing/books/tvs/etc. Honestly you can find a lot of good deals on these items at warehouse clubs. Our most recent was 150 cubic feet marine cooler that we got for about $50ish for our fridge breaking. That was the price Target was charging for some 50-100 cubic feet ones. Now we have it, and it will be great should there be a power failure, or a need to evacuate, or even if we are taking a long trip and want to bring food to cook with (like camping!)
  • Eggs, Milk, Butter. A simple price comparison (and I realize our prices are higher here then many areas): Milk at Publix: $3.85, Milk at BJ's: $3.29. Eggs at Publix $1.60ish, Eggs at BJ's $6ish for 5 dozen (so about $1.20/dz ). Butter is usually about $2.50 for 4 sticks at BJ's and that's generally a sale price at Publix.
  • Meat. Here's one example from a sale a few weeks back. Publix Ground Turkey was on sale for $2.69/lb. Ground Turkey is regularly priced $2.29/lb at BJ's. This is similar across all meats. There are times where Publix (or Winn-Dixie) has a great sale on meat, but generally it's still cheaper at BJ's then the sale price at Publix. Of course if I can make a deal happen at Publix where I get $X off Meat wyb some item, I try to do that, but only if the item I have to buy is a good deal.
  • Some produce. If I need a lot of some produce it's often cheaper to buy at BJ's. Like say I'm going to make stuffed peppers, it's about $5 for a 6 count bag (and these are good size red peppers). I often buy salad from there because I can get a large container of organic salad for $5ish. Considering the BOGO price for regular salad is generally $3.99 for two, and the amount in this container is about 4 of those bags and organic, I'd say it's a better deal.
  • Bread Products. Sure occasionally good deals come with coupons at Publix, but a lot of times I can get it for the same price at BJ's. I consistently buy hamburger and hotdog buns from there, as it is always $1.99 for 16. The bread we like (Martins Wheat Potato bread) is consistently about $5 for 2 loaves when it is about $4 for one at Publix. Even regular bread is fairly cheap there.
  • Pet items. If your dog or cat uses a typical brand pet food (like Dog Chow, Purina One), a lot of times the Warehouse club is the way to go. I've compared several stores on the price and a lot of time even with sales and coupons the warehouse club is cheaper.
I also have a great resource for those of you who live near BJ's. It is called MyBjsWholesale and it works a lot like iheartpublix. She lists the best deals she can find at BJ's using their coupon books, flyers, and policy for manufacturer's coupons. You'd be surprised what you can get for super cheap.
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