Grocery shopping. We all have to do it, but it doesn’t have to take up your whole day if you don’t want it to. Here are a few tips to get those necessities in your basket and into your car in no time.

1.    Make a list: You’ve heard it a thousand times but it’s one of the best tools you can use to shorten your shopping trip. And these days, you can go beyond the pencil and paper list. There are many new phone apps that make it easy and fun to make your list. Once your list is made, separate the items according to their section in the store.

2.    Make a meal plan: This goes hand in hand with making a list. Knowing exactly what you’re going to cook makes creating the list a breeze.

3.    Beat the crowd: Going shopping at off-peak hours can make your trip faster. Also shopping midweek (Tuesdays and Wednesdays) is good. Avoid weekends and immediately after work when the rest of the world shops. But if you must, shop before noon on the weekends and after dinner during the week.

4.    Put the kids to work: To avoid in-store meltdowns and sighs from the older ones, give them assignments. Older kids can match coupons to products and young ones can gather and count produce.

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