Fighting Inflation: Frugality Fundamentals

Fighting Inflation: Frugality Fundamentals

By Holland Cooke
Guest Column

Maybe you’ll be rich someday. But let’s face it, you’re not there yet so here are some fundamental frugalities that can help you fight inflation now – and after you’re rich, for that matter.

Shopping bricks ‘n mortar

I saved a couple hundred on the computer I’m using to write this, because I asked if there was an “open box.” It was still brand new and under warranty. Shopping for a TV? My pal Larry had his eye on a monster, list price $2595. He grabbed the demo for $995 when the new model came in.


Use self-checkout! You will pay less using self-checkout than at staffed registers, where all that stuff tempts impulse buying.

Shopping online

Before you check-out that cart, open a separate browser and Google “promo codes” for the company you’re shopping. If you’re a member, try AAA and AARP.

Shopping for services

Shopping for services? Once while on vacation, I flossed-off a crown, and the nearest dentist wanted $75 to re-cement it. When I asked “Discount for cash?” the doc pocketed the crisp 50 I offered.

Threaten to quit!

I was paying $15 a month for my New York Times digital subscription, until I called to cancel. Now it’s $4 a month.


What if you found $20 on the supermarket floor?

You can save at least that much by buying in bulk – but not everything.

  • AARP recommends stocking-up on bread which freezes well. Canned fruits and veggies and salmon and tuna are easy to store and have a long shelf life. As does pasta, and peanut butter.
  • And stock-up when you spot a great deal on toilet paper, paper towels, tissues and napkins, plastic wrap, plastic storage bags and garbage bags.
  • WORST foods to buy in bulk? Big containers of junk food, which go stale quickly. And cheese, which doesn’t freeze well. Because fish has high water content, freezing it too long can result in flavor loss. And olive oil has a limited shelf life.

Dreaded Shrink-flation!

Same price, less stuff in the package. It’s not your imagination.

That cereal box IS skinnier. That bag of Doritos is now a half-ounce smaller, averaging five fewer chips per, according to Forbes. Which reports that a bottle of Aleve has gone from 100 caplets to 90 caplets.

Cottonelle mega-roll toilet paper shrank from 340 sheets to 312 sheets.

TYou can read more from Holland Cooke here