Thanksgiving grocery challenge: Who can get the best deals?
Many Canadians are thinking about how their Thanksgiving dinners will look different this year because of rising food prices.
Prices for some Thanksgiving dinner staples are up more than 20 per cent compared to this time last year. Statistics Canada reported last week that inflation is up 10.8 per cent across all retail food items.
Last week, CTV News sent two reporters out with identical 12-item grocery lists to see who could find the best deals. It was a close call.
This week, Jeremie Charron and Kimberley Johnson went shopping for a Thanksgiving dinner. Jeremie shopped at a store in Stittsville, while Kimberley went grocery shopping in Kingston.
They were not permitted to use cars, reflecting the reality for many Canadians who rely on public transit, cycling, walking or other modes of transportation to get their groceries.
The items will be donated to local food banks.
Here's the shopping list:
- Box of crackers
- Block of cheese (400 grams)
- Turkey (at least 10 pounds)
- Potatoes (five-pound bag)
- Cranberries (one can)
- Frozen vegetables (one bag)
- Box of stuffing
- Dinner rolls (six)
- Can of gravy
- Pre-packaged salad
- Turnip (1)
- Pumpkin pie
Jeremie's shopping experience
This was a great experience and a reality for many.
No access to a vehicle, just your feet or public transit, and no bouncing from store to store, just one stop – those are often the circumstances for many, and so those were the rules of the challenge.
I chose to walk, with my grocery store about 1.5 kilometres away (busing was not an option for this trip, I live in the suburbs), and that took planning. I brought a heavy-duty shopping bag and a backpack, knowing I would be hauling back some heavy items.
I shopped at No Frills in Stittsville. The walk was 20 minutes, and so during that walk I used the Flipp App to browse flyers in the area for the best deals, ready to price match in store.
I found everything I needed, and got some great prices. But, and there’s a big but, when I got to the cash I realized all the flyers I had used to price match my items didn’t come into effect until Sept. 29 - the day after this challenge.
So I likely left some money on the table, but I swallowed my pride and checked out anyway.
And all of that was the easy part – now to walk home with the haul, but I had a plan.
I put the heaviest items - the turkey, the potatoes, and the turnips - in my backpack, and the lighter items went in my heavy-duty grocery bag.
The walk home was much harder than the walk there, but the backpack helped big time.
In total, my trip took about 1.5 hours, and it was a total of a little over 3 kms.
What did I learn? There are deals to be had, but you have to work for them, and you had better be prepared. In addition, walking is a valid option if you have a store close by, but again preparation is key, and you could count it as a workout – I had to shower before heading back to work.
Jeremie Charron shows off his shopping bag while walking home from the grocery store.
Kimberley's shopping experience
When it comes to walking or busing, there’s a large chunk of time that’s needed to set aside to do that. But, I learned you can have all the deals in the world, but if you don’t check your receipt and make sure you got them, you can really lose out.
As I was headed out the door, I grabbed reusable bags, because Walmart eliminated plastic ones at the beginning of the year, and although you can buy them in store, it can add to the bottom line.
The trip had two options, a 25-minute walk or a 15-minute bus trip, which cost $3.25.
I timed it right, caught the bus and made it to Walmart on time.
When you are shopping at one place, you are at the mercy of the store sales, prices and stock. I grabbed the last butter for the sale price at $4.48.
I also bought a sack of potatoes on sale, larger then I needed, but 10 pounds was a better price.
I missed the bus home, the next one was a 30-minute wait, and so I decided to walk.
At the half way point, carrying more than 20 pounds of weight on my back, I noticed how heavy everything is, needing to rearrange my backpack and two reusable bags on my arms, to make it more comfortable.
However, I got some deals I was happy with - $22 for a 5Kg frozen turkey, and $0.49 for stuffing.
After getting home, I realized I made a huge oversight. I didn’t look over my receipt when I left the store, and I was fully charged for a 10 pound bag of potatoes at $6 vs the $2.50 that the sale price listed for, which means I didn’t get the deal I was expected.
That’s a big lesson; check the receipts, but when you're running for the bus, it’s easy to forget key things like that. Not being able to turn back to insist I get the discount when that means adding extra time just isn’t practical.
Jeremie Charron shows off his shopping bag while walking home from the grocery store.
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
A spokesman for the chair of an all-party parliamentary group says it is "carefully" reviewing how it handles events with outside events after a newspaper publisher accused of holding antisemitic views took part in a recent gathering.
A U.S. woman was killed and four other passengers injured when a massive wave struck the Viking Polaris cruise ship while it was sailing toward the port of Ushuaia in southern Argentina on an Antarctic cruise, authorities said.
A mass shooting survivor and spokeswoman for gun-control group PolySeSouvient says it is 'incredibly disrespectful' for firearm rights advocates to invoke the group's name in a merchandise sale discount code.
The Bank of Canada is expected to conclude a historic year marked by high inflation and aggressive monetary policy tightening with one more interest rate hike on Wednesday.
Twitter has suspended rapper Ye after he tweeted a picture of a swastika merged with the Star of David.
U.S. prosecutors on Thursday asked a judge to dismiss bank fraud and other charges against Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of China's Huawei Technologies whose 2018 arrest strained relations between the U.S. and China.
The deaths of four University of Idaho students nearly three weeks ago have riled up thousands of would-be armchair sleuths, many of whom are posting speculation and unfounded rumors about the fatal stabbings online.
After 300 hours of testimony, 9,000 exhibits and a few major revelations, the public portion of an investigation into the first-ever use of the Emergencies Act ended Friday with a deep dive into questions about government accountability and transparency.
Hockey Canada says there were more than 900 documented or alleged incidents of on-ice discrimination -- verbal taunts, insults and intimidation -- across all levels and age groups during the 2021-22 season.
Two people are in custody after a shooting in the Fredericton area left two people injured and prompted police to issue an emergency alert in New Brunswick.
Four organizations representing Greater Moncton’s business community held a press conference Friday calling for urgent action in regards to downtown safety and the homelessness situation.
Two people are facing charges in connection with an unsanctioned Dalhousie University homecoming party that saw fires set, fireworks shot off and a person stabbed, in Halifax two months ago.
Students walked out of a Toronto high school they say has become the site of 'constant chaos' in which students detail deplorable conditions, teachers say it’s violent and parents are demanding action from the school board.
A group of 26 coworkers from across Ontario have won big.
Mayor John Tory has appointed Paul Johnson to be the new city manager using the new strong mayor powers granted to him by the province.
A Quebec judge has ordered Quebec provincial police and the Montreal police service to pay more than $290,000 in damages to four victims of the 2012 election night Metropolis shooting. Superior Court Justice Philippe Belanger laid the blame at the feet of the two police forces whose security plan had a 'major flaw' that a gunman took advantage of when he stormed the back of the building on Sept. 4, 2012.
Firefighters from several municipalities were called to the scene of a large fire Friday at the Mont-Gabriel Hotel in Sainte-Adele, Que.
Quebec's human rights commission was forced to close 194 discrimination complaints following the Supreme Court of Canada's Mike Ward decision, commission leaders revealed Friday while presenting their activity report for the year 2021-2022.
On Friday afternoon at the Sudbury Courthouse, two men pled guilty in an arson case that killed three people in a townhouse on Bruce Avenue in April 2021.
A Timmins doctor charged with sexual assault in July is facing several more charges after five more people came forward, police said Friday.
A Toronto-based mining company has been fined $300,000 for a workplace fatality that took place last year at Hemlo Mine near Marathon, Ont.
The London Fire Department is reminding apartment dwellers to keep their doors shut to help prevent the spread of fire, and to have an escape plan in place for when one does take place.
Middlesex County OPP say one person has died after a crash involving transport truck and an SUV.
Nearly a day after witnessing a mysterious stream of light beaming through the evening skies while driving through Windsor, Ont., Bassem Mazloum still wasn’t sure what he had witnessed.
The lawyer representing a Winnipeg man accused of killing four Indigenous women says his client 'absolutely' maintains his innocence and intends to plead not guilty.
Dozens of people gathered Friday morning in Steinbach to search for a man missing more than a week.
School divisions in and around Winnipeg are dealing with a lack of bus drivers, which is leading to some routes being cancelled.
Kitchener firefighters were called to put out flames at a construction trailer early Friday morning, and inside, they found a body.
One person was taken to hospital after a car collided with an LRT train Friday afternoon in Uptown Waterloo.
House of Friendship in Waterloo Region is getting $1.6 million from the province as part of Ontario’s new Mental Health and Addictions strategy.
Respite admissions at Rotary Flames House in Calgary will be paused and staff redeployed to help with the ongoing struggle at Alberta Children's Hospital.
Police say charges are pending against a 29-year-old man.
A prolonged cold spell throughout Alberta has led to a whopping 36 new weather records for the coldest daytime high and coldest overnight low in communities throughout the province.
A man died Thursday morning in Saskatoon following a shooting, according to police.
'We're going after the offenders': Sask. to suspend welfare benefits for 'serious' offenders with warrants
The Government of Saskatchewan has introduced legislation to suspend social assistance benefits to prolific violent offenders with active warrants, and to use information from the Ministry of Social Services to find those evading the law.
With fears Twitter could crash, a Saskatoon software developer is creating a new platform.
The weather outside is frightful, and as such, most drivers are leaving their pets at home. But Merlin and Louise Badry’s Goldendoodle Maggie is riding with her owners in style.
It was grannies' night behind the Edmonton Oilers bench at Rogers Place last Monday night. A group of friends from Whitecourt, Alta., attended the game against the Florida Panthers in grannies costumes and stayed in character all night.
Dozens of stolen vehicles, equipment recovered during warranted searches of Camrose-area properties: police
Some 100 stolen vehicles and pieces of equipment were found when Alberta police searched more than a dozen rural properties south of Edmonton in late November.
A team of researchers on Vancouver Island had a big breakthrough after a smaller earthquake struck near the coast of Tofino last Friday.
The B.C. Centre for Disease Control reported 369 people in hospital with COVID-19 in the province on Friday, up roughly 12 per cent from the previous week.
BC Ferries says one of its largest vessels stalled midway between Vancouver Island and the B.C. mainland Friday afternoon due to a mechanical issue.
The Regina Police Service (RPS) is asking the public for information or video that could assist in the investigation into a building explosion in the north central area on Nov. 13.
Part of a southern Saskatchewan highway remains closed one day after a fiery train derailment.
'Part of him with me': Sask. man fixing up grandpa's classic truck after finding it for sale on social media
A 24-year-old man from Preeceville, Sask. was reunited with his grandfather's classic, custom-made Ford truck after finding it on social media and plans to restore it to its former glory.