Thursday, January 5, 2012

Project Minimum Wage: Day Four: The Aldi's Experience

Day Three is in the books!

Just to rehash I started the day at $323.

My plan was to go to Aldi's after work at the recommendation of many folks through Twitter and Facebook. I haven't been to Aldi's since high school, picking up food for a food drive.


I arrived there after work. I'm walking in to the store and as I'm about to walk in, I see an older lady pushing a cart to the front as she just unloaded her groceries. She looked like she was getting cold so I walked over to her to grab the cart for her and take it back. You know, be the Good Samaritan. As I get ready to grab the cart, she says to me, "You can't have it sir". I'm a bit flabbergasted. I tell her, "Its ok, I can take it back for you." She gives me this awkward look and says, "I need my quarter back."

At this point I'm confused at what is going on. She then points at this quarter attached to her cart. It then clicks in my head; you have to use a quarter to use a cart at Aldi's. I probably looked like the biggest cheapskate trying to grab her cart. I have no quarters on me, so I get no cart.

I go inside and start browsing the aisles. Don't think there was one brand name I've heard of outside of the ramen noodles. I grab a box of crackers along the way and keep browsing the aisles. Then I see people with all these boxes. I'm confused as to what's going on. Then it hits me again, everybody is bringing in their own plastic bags and boxes. Ahhhh people bring in their own items to bag their groceries with. Around this time, I think people are starting to look at me like a lost puppy. I put my box of crackers back and leave Aldi's. I was not prepared for the shopping experience that is Aldi's. Hop in my car and drive to Dillon's to pick up stuff for dinner.

Maybe next time on a trip to Aldi's, I'll be more prepared and not trying to steal an older lady's quarter from her.

Dinner for last night was grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato bisque soup along with lactose pills.

$323 is now down to $316 but that included a box of knock off grape nuts cereal to change up my daily oatmeal breakfast.

On to day four...........

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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

bThat's how Aldi's keep their cost down

stewrat said...

Well yes Aldi's is a different shopping experience as you must bring a quarter if you want a cart and you must either bring your own bags or they will sell you some or use boxes. And there are no name brands but I have never been disappointed in the quality of their food. Most things are cheaper than Dillons, some are about the same. I've never found anything that was more. They don't have a lot of variety, cupboard staples mostly. But you can eat cheap if not exotic.
My complaint about grocery shopping in Wichita is that there isn't enough competition in full service stores. It is either Dillons or Wal-Mart. Over the years there was Safeway, Albertsons, Food 4 Less, now those are all gone.

Jeff M said...

That pretty much sums up my first experience with Aldi's.

Stacey D. said...

Aldi's is our main grocery store. I just can't see paying Dillon's prices on staple items. But it is a very different experience. It isn't pretty or visually appealing as Dillons or Walmart but the prices are so much cheaper. Just don't go when social security or welfare payments come out.

Anonymous said...

The lady needing the quarter back spoke volumns to me. That is the sad reality of living on minimum wage, social security, or disability. Every quarter counts - in fact, every penny counts.

Jenna said...

I get our milk from Aldi. I'm not for sure what your prices are in KS, but here in KY it's $1.49/Gallon. Their milk is hormone free (NOT organic) so the expiration dates are very long. I go about 2 times a month and buy enough gallons to cover my hubby's cereal addition and my oldest son's milk drinking addiction. All their prices are lower than anywhere else's normal prices (not including other places that run ads/sales/take coupons). They also have a money back policy if there is anything you buy that you do not like. Besides the milk, I recommend the $0.99/pack tortillas, tortilla chips $1.19/bag, and animal crackers and garlic lovers hummus. YUMMMMM!