Tips for Grocery Shopping in Los Angeles Without a Car

298x232_GrocCart_08_07These days owning a car in Los Angeles can be expensive. You have to pay for parking, deal with the outrageous gas prices, and waste endless hours fighting the traffic. You would be surprised at how many LA residents don’t have vehicles. Without a car you don’t have to worry about the drive, payments, insurance or even the maintenance. But, no car means you need to be a little savvier about how you grocery shop – because there’s no trunk or convenience.

Plan Your Shopping Trip Carefully

Before you create a grocery list, think about the weight of the items you’re going to buy. You might have to split up your trip, such as buying the big thing of milk this trip and waiting on juice the next. Heavy bags are a lot heavier the longer you’re carrying them, so keep that in mind too. The more weight you can distribute evenly between trips, the easier your walk home will be.

Shop More Often

When you have a car, you can shop once or even once every other week. But, when you’re walking you might need to grocery shop a little more often. Try going once a week or multiple times per week so that you can get everything you need without making it difficult to get home.

Ask a Friend for a Lift or Share a Car

If you have a friend with a car, consider going grocery shopping together. Pay for gas or buy some of their groceries for compensation. This not only allows you to shop once and get as much as you need, but helps your friend save on gas too.

Pick Stores Near By

While there might be better prices at the store across town, it’s not going to do you much good if you have to walk there and back. Go for the grocery stores that are nearby and don’t worry so much about the prices. Because you’re walking, it’s unlikely you will splurge on expensive items you don’t need anyway.

Get Your Own Cart

You can eliminate the worry about how much you can carry entirely by buying your own wheeled cart. These are wire baskets on wheels that have handles. You can also find some that are water and rust resistant or enclosed ones to protect your groceries in the rain or snow. This allows you to take your food home easily with a cart and not carry everything.

Use Public Transportation to Get Home

A bus or train can help lighten the load. Take your items on board, sit down and relax as you get driven close to home.

You don’t need a car to grocery shop. You can still save money while living in Los Angeles, get the groceries you need, and avoid all of the hassle just by doing it right.

Mar 2014