- Food and Cooking
Best Grocery Store Review--What is Aldi or Aldi's Like?
Why I love Aldi's Grocery Store
It's cheap. It's efficient. Its quality. Heck--sometimes it's even fun. What is it? My favorite grocery store, that's what. Aldi. (You'll hear it often referred to as Aldi's.) Aldi is a Germany-based grocery store that offers the best grocery shopping experience there is. They sell interesting, quality products at the lowest prices around. Aldi is always getting new and different items, which makes for a fun--yes, fun--shopping experience.
And all the money I save! It would be astonishing to have a total of all the money I've saved over the years by shopping at Aldi. Aldi is the store I shop at most. I only visit other grocery stores or super centers for items I can't find at Aldi.
There is no need to clip coupons when you shop at Aldi. Their prices are generally less than are products at other stores even with coupons.
Aldi used to have a reputation--a misconception--of having low quality, cheap foods, but that isn't the case. The products aren't name brand; they are just a different brand. Any product I've tried that I didn't like was simply a matter of taste. For example, their spaghetti sauce is a bit sweet for my taste, (probably because I usually make my own), but I don't care too much for the much more expensive Prego brand, either.
Aldi's sliced hamburger dill pickles, on the other hand, are the best I've tasted anywhere. Of all the products I've tasted from their store, there have been very few things that I haven't liked.
Some of the countries that have Aldi stores
Things you can buy at Aldi
Aldi sells the bulk of groceries needed. Breads and pastas, sauces, and canned goods are plentiful. Frozen goods boast an assortment of vegetables, meats, ice cream, and individual as well as family meals. Aldi has an impressive spread of fresh fruit and vegetables. The dairy section is stocked with milk, sour cream, yogurt, numerous kinds of cheeses, and more.
Toilet paper, paper towels, and laundry supplies--they're all there. While maybe not your normal brand, dog food and cat food are available for purchase if you're in a pinch. You can also pick up some toiletries, which includes cosmetics, vitamins, shampoo, and more.
I love Aldi!
What I buy elsewhere
There are certain things that I can't buy at Aldi, but I figure that situation is true with any store. Aldi doesn't have green onions, and I really like green onions and I also must have my Diet Coke, which I must get elsewhere. There are certain toiletries and household cleaners and other items for the home that I buy at other places, such as the local super center. Thanks to Aldi, though, those dreaded trips to the bigger stores are farther apart than what they used to be before I discovered Aldi.
Price Comparison of sample items
Other grocery store or supercenter
Savings per item
8 oz grape tomatoes
100% whole wheat bread
cream of mushroom soup
39 cents (varies)
8 oz block cheddar cheese
4 quarters butter
1 gallon milk
Aldi's Special and Seasonal Buys
Something I really love about Aldi are their special and seasonal buys. At times they have special products, such as foods with a Mexican or Italian theme. Special and seasonal items are ones that aren't stocked on a regular basis. These items usually come back from time to time. I stock up on the ones I really like when I see them. Sometimes other big name brand products are brought in for a time.
Aldi has weekly buys that are fun to see. I love going down the miscellaneous aisle of different, often seasonal items. In the spring, you might find bird feeders and tulip and other bulbs in the fall. You can purchase grills, heaters, even generators. Often there are toys and electronics, and numerous household items, many of which are gadgets and small appliances for the kitchen.
I look forward to looking over the weekly ad, which I get via email. These special buys, which are always lower than anywhere else, even when they are the same brand, actually make shopping at Aldi fun. I usually do enjoy looking around in the store for special deals and even mark downs, which makes an already reasonable price really cheap, making the item impossible to pass up.
Aldi is efficient
I love Aldi's efficiency. When in a long line at another store, you might continually check your watch. At Aldi, though, cashiers are fast, and your biggest worry is whether or not you'll get all the grocery items onto the conveyor belt before your checker is finished!
Time is not wasted, as shelves are stocked with items in the boxes in which they are shipped, with the tops just pulled off. These boxes are recycled when customers use the empty ones to carry out their groceries, as Aldi does not provide free bags for customers.
After you whiz through the line, you'll be pleased to whisk off your cart to the side counter to sack those groceries as the checker waits on the next customer. And so it moves . . . .
The line isn't slowed down, either, by customers writing checks. In fact, many Aldi stores accept only cash and debit cards. My local Aldi does accept Discover credit cards, which is my most common form of payment there.
Aldi has no hidden costs
Aldi's efficiency saves money and allows the store to offer lower prices. This efficiency goes hand in hand with the lack of hidden costs. There are no costs in the "free" bags for groceries. Customers have the option to purchase bags for five or ten cents, or they can bring their own bags or grab some empty boxes from the store. I can always find a box or two if I've forgotten to bring my own bags.
Checkers are efficient, as they do other things, such as stocking, in the store, if no customers are in line. No employee sits and waits. If the line gets long, another employee is called to the next register. As mentioned earlier, time isn't wasted by taking products completely out of boxes. Employees also don't have to spend their time returning carts from the parking lots, as customers get their carts for a quarter and return them to get that quarter back.
Aldi has a model that works. Their no frills practices make it possible to pass along significant--sometimes mind-blowing--savings to customers. For that, I am very grateful!
Update on Aldi Products
My local Aldi store, in early 2013, started carrying the green onions I love! And near mid-year, they started selling fresh cilantro. These are two items I would have to go to other stores for, since I love both items. I trust that, as time goes on, Aldi will carry more and more of the items I want and need!
And they are! My local store now carries Coke and Diet Coke soft drinks. The store is also carrying more and more organic products, both fresh and packaged. Aldi continues to expand in their offerings.