I am slowly changing my buying patterns to match the changing economic climate. I have developed a strategy that means buying locally is out of the question. When the purse stings tighten up, so does my wallet—and I have no bones about it.
In White-Rock, a community about 20 kms South of here, along the Canada US border, has a brand new big box store, and I decided to check it out. I did a big shopping trip there just to try it out and see for myself how good the prices are compared to the rest of the Metro Vancouver area. I found many great deals, and I was impressed.
This prompted me to start shopping there more often. My second trip yielded me about a 37 percent savings compared to buying at my local market. The third trip I was able to buy for an entire month for less than half of what my previous budget was at the store that I normally went to. That is a savings of 53.2 percent! This covered gas, insurance by a long shot.
Sadly, and I know people are going to be typing in about this, this is going add further hardship to the local economy. I have to remind myself that this economic disaster was caused by Banks and greedy corporation, who in turn are asking for corporate welfare to fix their problem, so I have no guilty feelings about buying from outside my local area. In fact, me and bunch of friends are heading across the border next week, into Washington State, to do a shop. We are taking that slogan, “Buy America” quite laterally.
With all our principles shoved down the toilet, tightening up the wallet is the only course action left for the little guy. Out of all of us who are heading down to the States for our weekend shop, three have huge credit problems. I have heard that they are in so deep that seeking deals is the only way they can survive. For me, it comes down to staying afloat. We know that there will be a trade war across the border for the lowly consumer, so getting the deals now will help out in the short term. This happened before during the last recession when taxes took a sharp increase on duty and excise taxes. People forget, and this should remind them of what happened back then in the mid 1980s.
The best example I can show you is the Kraft Dinner deals. The local store in Fort Langley sells a box for about $1.08, not including taxes. In White Rock, I can purchase a box for $0.12. You do the math. Toilet paper is another great example, I can get 24 roles of double ply for about the same cost of buying a six pack locally. My only saving, I have to be vary smart about this, is weighing the cost of fuel compared to walking. Right now the price difference trumps the cost of gas, time driving and stress doing the whole trip.
Now I have to deal with my conscience of smart buying vrs. local economy. Unfortunately smart buying means that my business friends will have to deal with loosing consumers as they seek elsewhere to buy their goods. The loonie does not go as far as it did last month, and making it stretch further is now the name of the game.