Grocery Shopping Tips and Tricks for Seniors and Caregivers
Some people love grocery shopping; others consider it a necessary but unlikeable chore. Regardless of which category you fit into, everyone needs grocery shopping tips to make the process less stressful!
As prices inflate, self-checkout becomes more commonplace, and people take precautions to protect themselves from viruses, it seems like we’re constantly adjusting to new changes at the grocery store.
Here are some grocery shopping tips that will make your experience easier!
Use a Grocery Delivery Service
Many cities, towns, and even rural areas now have access to grocery delivery services. For an annual or per-delivery fee, you can place your orders online through an app.
You can choose the grocery store where you want your dedicated shopper to go and select the exact items you want. You can specify what replacements you would like if the item you’ve requested is out of stock or instruct your shopper to refund the item if it is unavailable.
Typically, delivery is available within a few hours of placing your order.
- No more trips to the grocery store!
- An excellent option for people who don’t drive
- Easy way to get groceries for people with mobility limitations
- Shoppers for these services don’t typically enter your home; you’ll need to get the groceries at your front door
- Some stores increase prices on items purchased by delivery services
- The fees for these sites can add up, and it’s best to tip your shopper
Drive Up for Grocery Pick Up
This is similar to getting your groceries delivered by a shopping app since you place an order through an app and have your shopper collect the items from the store. The difference is that you will drive to the store and pick up your groceries instead of having them delivered.
Many grocery chains have these services. You can visit the store’s website to place an order or download an app.
- Lower fees and costs than grocery delivery options
- You still get to avoid the grocery store, including on crowded days
- Your shopper will communicate with you about any changes or replacements
- You have to be able to drive to the store to pick up your items
- You’ll have to use a different website or app for each store
Subscribe to a Meal Kit Box
Meal kit subscription boxes are very popular these days! When you order a subscription box, your credit card is charged at regular intervals (typically once a month), and packages are delivered to you with everything you need to prepare meals at home.
There is a lot of variety available regarding these subscription boxes! Some are for home chefs who love to cook and try new things. Others are designed for people who want simplicity above all else.
You can get vegetarian or vegan options, gluten-free, low-calorie, low-sodium, frozen, fresh, organic, and just about anything else you’re looking for!
The best meal subscription boxes for seniors are affordable, easy to prepare, and simple to order.
- Very customizable to your specific needs and preferences
- A great way to eat fresh without regular trips to the store
- Most platforms offer a senior discount
- Subscription boxes can be pricey
- They create a significant amount of trash and waste
- You have to be pretty tech-savvy to consistently customize, pause, or adjust your order
Food Delivery for Senior Citizens
Several delivery options are designed specifically with senior citizens and caregivers in mind.
Meals on Wheels is the most well-known nonprofit that provides delivered meals to seniors who may be partially or entirely homebound. More than 2 million Meals on Wheels volunteers pick up food at a local distribution center and then take those meals to senior citizens’ homes.
The cost of Meals on Wheels is based on a sliding scale, dependent upon your specific situation. Some people receive their meals for no charge, while others pay a small fee.
- Much lower cost than other subscription and delivery options
- Both organizations have a great reputation for excellent service and good food
- Delivery may not be available in all areas
Use Digital Coupons
Most stores still offer paper coupons, but more options are available if you switch to digital coupons.
You will need to access the store’s website or download the app to use digital coupons. Most grocery stores allow you to “clip” digital coupons before shopping. At the checkout, you can show them your phone to scan a barcode or enter your account information (typically, your phone number).
- Great way to reduce costs
- You don’t have to worry about forgetting your coupons at home
- Requires you to be comfortable with digital platforms and apps
Senior Resources from Scripps Affiliated Medical Group
We hope these grocery shopping tips give you some ideas for how you might have an easier time managing your grocery shopping! If you need additional support as a senior or caregiver, Scripps AMG offers numerous resources to our senior community in San Diego. Check out our Senior Resources page or our San Diego farmer’s market directory to learn more!