Real-life Economics, Tips

Real-life economics: why saving 50 cents matters

Have you ever wondered why saving fifty cents on a box of cereal even matters? It can seem a bit ridiculous, cutting out coupons or spending time searching through the prices to save such tiny amounts.

I’ll break down why it really does matter, and why spending time comparison-shopping actually saves you a ton of money.

Stick with me, this is actually going to save you a lot of money, and you can use that money you save to buy actually fun stuff, instead of boring groceries!

Say you get a lot of groceries. Here’s the list of things you need to get:
-granola bars
-bottled water

Okay, now let’s say you pay normal prices for each of those-
Eggs: $2.30 for a dozen large brown eggs
Milk: $7.76 for 2 half-gallons of organic
Granola bars: $10.56 for 4 boxes of 6 (24 total)
Cereal: $10.68 for 4 12oz boxes, 48oz total
Toothpaste: $5.44 for a tube
Bananas: $4.96 for 2 12oz banana chips bags, 24oz total
Bottled water: $8.92, four packs of 8
Bread: $2.68 for garlic loaf, 11oz
Cheese: $8.44 for 2 16-oz blocks (total of 32oz)

Total cost: $61.74

Now, say you get cheaper alternatives and/or buy larger quantities-

Eggs:$1.54 for a dozen extra-large white eggs
Milk: $6.98 for a gallon of organic
Granola bars: $3.98 for box of 24 bars
Cereal: $5.98 for 50oz
Toothpaste: $3.17 for a tube
Bananas: $2.50 for 5 bananas (a total of 20 ounces)
Bottled water: $4.98, pack of 32
Bread: $2.00 for garlic loaf, 16oz
Cheese: $6.97 for 32-oz block

Total cost: $38.10

Whoa!! Getting things in bigger quantities and from cheaper brands actually saved $23.64! That’s enough to pay for at least 4 Starbucks drinks, right? (Or, if you buy creamer and coffee and sweeteners in bulk and make your own, at least 20 drinks, hint hint…..)

So, it really does make sense!

(All prices used came from actual store prices.)


Happy saving,



3 thoughts on “Real-life economics: why saving 50 cents matters”

  1. Couldn’t agree more! I’ve recently posted an article on the neuroscience of saving money. You may want to check it out!


  2. My gosh, thank you for this reminder of why I do not buy organic food, though I know that was not your intention. All of those prices are astronomical. I guess if organic food is that important to an individual and it fits in their budget I can understand but by those prices I would be spending $1000 per month to feed my family of 3. Yikes!
    Couponing is definitely helpful but I have found better or at least comparable savings by opting for store/generic brands on many things, which takes no more time as far as planning and shopping goes. I think you make a good point. Bulk purchases can definitely save too as long as the food doesn’t spoil before you can eat it.
    To me it is all about your greater outlook on money in general – you either value the financial resources you have or you don’t. If you value your resources then every little bit of savings matters because paying full price when you don’t absolutely have to feels wasteful.


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