"Supermarkets use clever tactics to make you part with cash but they're easy to avoid once you know which offers will benefit you - and which will leave you worse off," says Darren Williams from PromotionalCodes.org.uk:
- Confusing multi-buys Raising the price of an item when it’s on offer is more common than you might think. So check the weight, size and brand to see if you’re better off just buying one.
- Twin packs Twin packs of food, drink or clothing often work out more expensive than just buying two or a larger version
- If a brand is on sale still buy supermarket own-brand If a well-known brand is on sale for a week, don’t be tempted. The own-brand will be just as good and cheaper. Watch out for multi-buys on brand sales, too.
- Pre-bagged vs loose When packaged fruit and vegetables are on offer, beware. Loose fruit and veg can be a lot cheaper. Double check!
- Red £1 or ‘only a £1’ If it’s screaming out it’s a great deal, then it probably isn’t. Check the alternatives and that you’re getting good value by comparing weights and package sizes with food.
- BOGOF This is a great deal if you're going to use the items, so stock up on shampoo, canned goods and toothpaste. But watch out for buy-two-get-the-third free - that’s only a 33 per cent saving. Also watch for items with a short shelf -life. Buying a huge multi-pack of yoghurts and one free is not a bargain if you're just going to throw them away!
There are more money-saving tips in every issue of Yours magazine, out every fortnight on a Tuesday.