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MONEY HABITS

Why you should buy in bulk: The benefits of bulk-buying

09 November 2018

Bulk-buying can be a difficult thing to get right. Buying a significant amount groceries at once can often lead to onverindulging on items that you don’t need but look great when discounted. It takes a little planning and knowhow, but, when it’s done right, bulk-buying can lead to substantial savings.

But the benefits don’t just stop with your wallet. By stocking up your trolley and purchasing products in bulk, your consumer footprint is reduced. You’re reducing packaging, waste, and petrol, as well as the time you spend shopping. So for those with some pantry space to spare, here are some of the key things to keep in mind.

Saving Time

Who wants to make extra trips to the grocery store? Not us.

Just think of what a grocery shop actually consists of. Think of how much time and effort you commit before you even get to the shops: pulling out your reusable bags, getting in the car, fighting the traffic on the roads, stopping off for petrol, trying to find a park, navigating to the aisles you need, going back for that item you forgot, making your way to the counter, waiting in line, making unnecessary small talk with the cashier, fitting everything in your trolley, fitting everything in your car boot, running the trolley to the trolley bay, driving back against the traffic, unpacking it from the car to the house, and putting it all away. It’s strenuous! No wonder delivery services thrive in Australia.

So remove the burden of unnecessary trips to the supermarket with a little foresight and some extra groceries (just remember to choose items that won’t go off within a week).

Health Benefits

Buying in bulk encourages you to cook healthier. Most people eat out when they don’t have much in the cupboards, so having a lot to spare gives you the opportunity to prepare a lot of meals at home and try new things.

This is especially true if the foods you’ve bought in bulk are whole foods, or what some might call ‘raw’. This means there’s no added sugar, colours, flavours, or nasties hidden inside. It’s straight from the crop or wholesaler.

When you’re planning your trip to the shops, you may be able to access discounts of up to 15% from over 100 of Australia’s popular retailers, including Woolworths and Coles, via the Suncorp App!

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War on Waste

Bulk buying saves you more than just money - you help save the planet! We know it’s important to be environmentally conscious. And if you can save money by doing so, why wouldn’t you?

Waste remains a huge issue for the food industry. Every bit we can individually do to reduce the amount of package on our items can help bring down our communal waste.

There can be a lot less waste when you’re purchasing in bulk, since multiple smaller items will often use more packaging than one large item. Some stores even allow you to bring your own containers in so that you only buy as much as you need and don’t use any unnecessary plastic or cardboard. It also adds convenience! You can just pop the jars or containers straight in the pantry when you get home.

Shopping list to buy in bulk

If you’re a seasoned bulk-buyer or just looking to make a few more budget and environmentally conscious purchasing decisions, we have a short list of some of the best and easiest things to buy in bulk:

Pulses

Grains, seeds and dry foods like rice and pasta are staple bulk buys. Cereals and muesli and granola also fall into this category. Why not buy grains in bulk, then buy dried fruit and nuts to make your own muesli?

Toiletries

You certainly don’t want to be caught out without toothpaste or toilet paper. You know it’ll be used eventually, so save yourself the effort and trips to the shop by buying large. Some dedicated bulk-buy stores even let you use your own containers for toiletries.

Non-perishables

Non-perishable foods can include things like canned vegetables, soups or baked beans, which you can buy as much of as you like since they don’t spoil easily. Some dry foods like rice, flour, and sugar also have a long shelf life. They’re also versatile, used in lots of different dishes in lots of different ways.

Cleaning products

Similar to toiletries, some bulk buy places will allow you to bring your own containers when purchasing soap, dishwashing liquid or washing machine powder. What’s more, your containers won’t get very dirty if you’re using them to hold cleaning products.

Health food

If you’re into your fitness or gains at the gym, you’ll know that supplements are best bought in bulk. Protein powders, pre-workouts, and energy bars are available at most supplement shops.

Chocolate

Who doesn’t love chocolate? It stores well in cool, dry places out of the light. Treat yourself, and save money while you’re at it. Plus, it’s vital to have chocolate on hand for any emergencies!

How-To

It’s easy to get carried away with bulk-buying when you find a good deal somewhere, but remember to test smaller portions before you make the decision to buy a wheelbarrow’s worth of something. What happens if you spend up on a cleaning product only to find out your child is allergic to it? Sample a few things and keep a list of your favourites for next time.

If you’re not the best at maths, bulk buying will change that. Despite the warnings teachers used to give kids, nowadays, we do walk around with a calculator in our pockets – our phones.

You can even start shopping in bulk just a little bit at a time. Buy enough for a fortnight, see how it pans out. Did you run out earlier? Figure out what you and your family consume and take note for next time. It’s trial and error, without the error part.

Hopefully these tips can help you be a savvier shopper, a conscious shopper and a better buyer. Every bit counts!

If you’re looking to get a better view of where your money is going and take control of your savings, then you may want to consider portioning away money for each of your savings goals. Suncorp’s Everyday Options Account allows you to open up to 9 sub-accounts, which you can use to focus your saving and spending.

Explore the Everyday Options Account

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Information is intended to be of a general nature only and any advice has been prepared without taking into account any person's particular objectives, financial situation or needs. You should make your own enquiries, consider whether advice is appropriate for you and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or Product Information Document before making any decisions about whether to acquire a product

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