SHOPPERS have been warned against Tesco Clubcard prices because they might not be the cheapest option.
Thousands have Clubcard vouchers which need to be used within the next couple weeks before they expire – but are the bargains worth it?
Having a Clubcard usually means you can access reduced prices on groceries, homeware and more at Tesco.
You can sign up for free on the Tesco website where you’ll need to set up a Tesco account first if you don’t already have one.
Once you’ve signed up by filling in your personal details, you’ll need to allow up to 24 hours between the application and completion of your Clubcard registration to be a member.
Once you receive your Clubcard, you can start earning points. You’ll collect one point for every £1 you spend in-store and online, or one point for every £2 you spend on fuel.
Every 150 points is then turned into £1.50, and these points can be redeemed as vouchers towards other food shops, or for meals out in participating restaurants.
By scanning your Clubcard at the till, any items you buy which offer a yellow reduced price on the shelf will be automatically processed.
But, the question is, are these reduced prices much of a bargain?
One lady posted a shocking discovery to Facebook group Extreme Couponing and Bargains UK – where she found not such a savvy deal.
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She compared two toilet rolls, one with a Clubcard price and one without.
Both prices were the same – £8.50 – except the one without the Clubcard price had 24 rolls in the pack compared to the other, which had 16.
So you’d be getting more for your money by purchasing the non-Clubcard item.
She wrote: “Don’t let the Clubcard prices catch you out!
“Just because it’s on the Clubcard price doesn’t mean it works out better.”
Other Facebook users were taking note of the discovery, with one posting: “I always work things out like this, a fab tip for those who don’t!”
Another said: “These Clubcard prices are a load of bull since they came out!”
And one more put: “Sometimes a yellow price ticket isn’t the bargain it appears to be.”
How can I find the best prices?
Using a Clubcard isn’t the only way you can find bargains at the supermarket.
You’ll definitely want a range of ways to find the cheapest prices.
To start with, supermarket scanners can help you tally up the cost of your shop before you reach the checkout – stopping you from going over budget.
It can help you if you normally meal-prep – making sure you stay consistent with costs calculate as you buy.
Also, to keep customers coming back, supermarkets often launch loyalty schemes.
For example, you can get vouchers, exclusive money-saving deals and lower prices on grub by signing up.
They’re usually free to join too, so you have nothing to lose by scanning your loyalty card next time you shop.
You might even find your bill automatically lowers at the checkout when you do this.
Supermarkets tends to put more expensive brands at eye-level, so one way to slash your spends is to bend down.
On the lower shelves you’ll find cheaper items like own-brand goods that are just a fraction of the cost.
The supermarkets try on this layout trick so that consumers spot the top dollar products first and, particularly if they’re in a rush, will add them straight to their basket without a second thought.
Meanwhile, all the budget bits are on the bottom shelf where they’re less visible, and likely to go quietly unnoticed.
Shopping at cheaper supermarkets can help shave money off your bill.
Research from consumer website Which? for example, revealed that shoppers were spending £10.15 more on their shopping at Waitrose compared to budget supermarket Aldi.
You could try mix and matching your shop too – don’t feel like you have to buy everything from one shop as some items might be cheaper elsewhere.
The only downside to this is travel costs – you might use up a bit of petrol shipping around to different stores on the hunt for the best bargain.
There are also schemes and grants that offer the most hard-up a helping hand.
Most major supermarkets have their own offers and grants going – and you can read about them here.