Supermarket-free Me: Day 26

Okay, so this should be the easy post – the disadvantages of giving up supermarkets for 28 days!  I do want to stress though that obviously there are going to be difficulties in giving up something that was ‘working’ in most ways and, please, don’t read this post without looking at the ‘advantages’ from yesterday if you haven’t already!

  • The biggest problem for me has been that none of the shops I’ve visited during this experiment have matched the supermarket in terms of convenience.  My local Farm Shop came close but it is further from home and I can’t park beside the trolleys to sit my youngest straight in (any freedom before trying to get my toddler into a trolley generally means I am fighting a losing battle!) Internet shopping at the Ethical Superstore has been convenient but I am disappointed I haven’t been able yet to find a competitor for my custom.  Within the 28 days I haven’t spent enough time searching for another shop that will deliver the range of things I need.  This doesn’t mean there isn’t one, it just means my very limited spare time hasn’t stretched far enough.  (If you’re reading and you know of any, please get in touch!)
  • I posted on Day 13 about the difficulties of price comparing outwith the supermarket and I’m still struggling with this.  In the supermarket there are so many of the same type of product that you can make a reasonably educated guess as to whether you are getting value for money.  At a small store with a choice of only one or two things, it is harder to know if you’d be better off shopping elsewhere.
  • Of all of all of the non-supermarket shops I visited, only my local farm shop had trolleys.  This is a major problem for me with two young children.  While generally (not always!) my youngest has been happy enough in the buggy, it has been hard to negotiate my way around shops pushing it, while carrying a basket and trying to stop both children pulling things off the shelves. It has also usually limited what I have bought as I just haven’t been able to carry everything I need round the shop.
  • I feel that this experiment has been incredibly time consuming.  Supermarket trips fitted in easily to my week, taking up no more than 90 minutes, usually two times a week with the odd trip for extras whereas I feel as if I’ve spent at least double that time shopping during my experiment.  I do feel that I can reduce this with practice though.
  • Car parking has often caused me a problem both in terms of having to pay for it and because I’ve not been able to park right outside as in the supermarket.  Again though, with practice, I’m learning where to shop to avoid charges.
  • I’ve found that there are some things it’s just hard to beat the supermarket on, such as the day I was looking for Easter Crafts for the children and I just didn’t manage it in the time I had.  My usual supermarket always has affordable seasonal things in stock.

In my next post I’ll address the big issue of how I might chose to shop after my 28 days is over.

(Thereafter I’ll be relocating to the 24/7 supermarket which is only 5 minutes away from my house where I will be in the café, admiring my full trolley of 3 for 2 deals, looking at my car parked – for free – outside the front door!!!!) 

I am joking…I think…yes, definitely joking!

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