Many people who have visited can tell you about their first shopping experience at an Aldi’s grocery store because it is so unlike any other grocery store you have probably been to. Aldi’s is pretty basic compared to all the stores you may visit and their price, but generally not their quality, reflects that.
Some people are a bit intimidated when they first enter an Aldi’s store. I admit, I was. I didn’t quite understand how it worked but once I figured it out, it was very easy. The first few things you want to do to prepare for a shopping trip to Aldi’s should be done before you even leave your house.
Gather all of your shopping bags so that you are not only saving the environment, but you won’t have to pay for bags either, as Aldi’s charges you for the bags you use. Of course, you can just throw everything in the back of your car but then you chance a bag of frozen vegetables rolling under the seats and you not finding it until it begins to smell.
Find a quarter. This was the hardest for me as we do so much online and pretty much only use our debit cards, so having change laying around is rare and if change is to be found, generally the hubby snatches it up for sodas and snacks at work. I will often leave a quarter stashed in my car just for trips to Aldi’s.
Make a list before you go but don’t expect Aldi’s to carry everything you may find at your local grocer. The basics are always found at Aldi’s, and even specialty items like balsamic vinegar and hummus, are sneaking their way into the products that are always available, but the store does not regularly carry everything you may be used to seeing at a regular store.
Brand names are not common at Aldi’s either. Aldi’s has their own brands such as Fit and Active or Grandessa. The only time Aldi’s has brand names is when they get them for a good deal but don’t think this makes their store brand any less appetizing. Over time we have found that we like most of the products at Aldi’s, the same or even better, than the name brands we were used to buying, and spending a great deal more on.
The aisles are a bit tighter than many other grocers, the stores are smaller and there aren’t as many options. This doesn’t mean you cannot feed your entire family off of what you can purchase at Aldi’s whether you want fresh fruits and vegetables, processed snack foods or cleaning products.
Be prepared when you check out at Aldi’s. They do not take checks or credit cards. They do take cash, EBT cards, and debit cards. The check out process is fast. It will seem as if the clerk is zooming through your produce as they toss your groceries into a new basket. Don’t worry though, they always place my bread and eggs in the front of the basket so I don’t have to worry about items getting broke or smashed.
You then take the new basket and leave the one you were using for the next person and head over to the long counter they have at the front of the store. You have to bag your own groceries when shopping at Aldi’s but this is well worth it after checking out and seeing just how much money you saved.
Don’t forget to return your cart after you load your car up to get your quarter back. Sometimes you even find a cart with a quarter still in it and I like to pass that on when it happens. Often people will offer you their own quarter to take your cart as well so you don’t have to walk all the way back to the cart corral.
Do you see where you save money when shopping at Aldi’s? They don’t pay someone to get carts out of the parking lot, to bag your groceries, or even to give you much help in the store. There are usually less than five people working in an Aldi’s grocery store at any one time. These savings get passed on to you.
I have to say, I have never had a bad experience shopping at Aldi’s. I have never brought home food and found it to be bad. I have never stayed in line any longer than I have at Walmart, and that isn’t even very often.
If you have an Aldi’s in or near to your town, you should check it out. Don’t be afraid to try out Aldi products, you may not like them all but I can almost guarantee you will like a great deal of them!