6 Ways To Save Money At Whole Foods

Whole Foods is deservedly stereotyped as “boujee” expensive grocery option - because it is expensive!

In fact, shopping at Whole Foods can cost anywhere from ten to twenty percent more than competing supermarkets.

However, this higher price point means you are getting better quality, fresher, and healthier foods, as well as imported specialty items that can be hard to find at your local Kroger.

Since being purchased by Amazon in 2017, Whole Foods has steadily gotten cheaper to shop at, and is in fact now in line with Kroger, and other less “high-end” supermarkets in terms of markup and standard pricing.

But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t still ways to save!

In this article, we’ll go through some of the best ways to save money when you shop at Whole Foods, including:

  • Getting an Amazon Prime Membership
  • Buying Your Food in Bulk
  • Downloading the Whole Foods Market App
  • Getting a Prime Visa Credit Card
  • Checking for Coupons
  • Bringing Your Own Reusable Shopping Bags

Let’s jump straight in so you can get the most bang for your buck at Whole Foods!

Get an Amazon Prime Membership

If you don’t already have an Amazon Prime Membership, getting one is one of the easiest and best ways to save money on your Whole Foods shopping.

Since Amazon owns Whole Foods, they have great partnership deals to earn their subscribers discounts, specials, and other benefits.

When you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can get convenient and discounted grocery delivery straight from your local Whole Foods, as well as free grocery pick-up.

Either option means a lot of time saved stuck in the supermarket, and saving yourself from impulse purchases as you wander the isles.

You can also still save when you go to the store yourself!

Prime members can regularly get an additional ten percent off of a wide range of items in store, you just need to scan your QR code when you check out.

There are also varying specials where you can save even more.

An Amazon Prime membership usually costs $14.99 monthly, or $139 annually, with special discount rates for those receiving government support as well as students.

Along with fantastic savings at Whole Foods, your Prime Membership will get you free, prioritized delivery on millions of items from Amazon, as well as its many partner brands, savings on prescription fees, access to prime video, and many more perks!

Buy in Bulk

Bulk buying is a simple trick that will save you almost anywhere you shop for consumables, including Whole Foods.

Like most grocery stores, you get a better deal at Whole Foods when you buy more of a product.

This could be choosing the larger or “family-sized” version rather than the standard, or by taking advantage of deals which give you a lower per unit rate when you purchase multiples.

In addition to these commonly found discounted rates, Whole Foods also has a dedicated bulk section, where you can purchase things like flour, grains, beans, nuts, and other slow to perish necessities at a reduced rate.

A great thing about this bulk department is that it is priced by weight, so you can get as much or as little as you need.

When buying in bulk, it’s important to think about how fast you and/or your family go through a food product, and how long the product is likely to last before it goes off.

If you’re buying more than you need and letting food go bad, this will be costing you more money in the long run, as well as being wasteful.

For this reason, bulk buying is often the most beneficial if you have a lot of mouths to feed.

However, even if you’re living alone or in a smaller household, you can still make bulk buying work for you!

Just stick to the non-perishable items, or strike a deal with your roommates, friends, or neighbors.

Download The Whole Foods App

Another way to maximize your savings at Whole Foods is to download the Whole Foods Market App.

The app features digital coupons that you can scan at the checkout to save on featured products.

It also lets you know about local sales and promotions, so you can plan your shopping trip wisely and know what’s going to be on sale in your local store.

If you’re an Amazon Prime Member, you can also integrate your membership within the app itself, and find out which products you’ll receive additional savings on, as well as accessing your QR code to scan when you checkout.

As well as offering great deals, the Whole Foods Market App allows you to easily create shopping lists, as well as having easy to follow recipes that can help you tailor your meals to favor the current sales and make the most of your money.

Planning your menu around seasonal food and food that’s on sale is a great way to save money on your grocery shopping in and of itself.

The Whole Foods Market App is free to download as well! Simply go to the App Store or Google Play Store, search it up, download it, sign in, and you’re ready to start saving!

Get a Prime Visa Credit Card

Another amazing way to take advantage of the acquisition of Whole Foods by Amazon is to get a Prime Visa Credit Card.

When you shop at Whole Foods with your Prime Visa card, you’ll earn five percent back on all purchases - and that’s on top of the savings you’ll already be getting by being a Prime Member.

Those savings can work on adding more wiggle room to your grocery budget, or be reallocated to save money elsewhere.

The Prime Visa card has no annual fee, no foreign transaction fee, and competitive interest rates.

Along with the cashback offer at Whole Foods, you’ll get five percent back from anything you purchase from Amazon, Amazon Fresh, or Chase travel.

That even includes two percent back from restaurants, transit, and gas stations, and one percent back on everything else.

As with any credit card, it’s important to make regular payments, and not rack up too much interest, to keep it being a money saver rather than an added drain on your bank account.

Check For Coupons

If you’re trying to be a savvy shopper, coupons are where it’s at.

Whole Foods regularly has great coupons and promotions running. You can find coupons in person in your local store or newspaper, or through the Whole Foods Market App that are good for your store or stores in your region specifically.

These tend to be discounts on a specific product, often due to ordering discrepancies, and can be a really good bargain if you catch them in time.

Be careful not to fall into the trap of buying things you don’t need just because there’s a good deal though!

It’s one thing to try out a new brand or product you’ve been wanting to try, but you’re still losing money (and time) if you purchase food that you dislike or will go to waste before you can consume it.

For general, nationwide coupons, you can also look at the Whole Foods Market App, as well as browsing on Amazon, on their website, or through third-party couponing sites like CouponFollow.

These coupons can get you anywhere from five or ten dollars off to up to thirty percent of your whole order!

Many coupons are one use only, so it’s important to plan when you use them.

If you have one that takes a dollar value off, it’s fine to use anytime - especially when you’re short on cash.

However, for the larger, percentage based coupons, it’s a good idea to save for when you’re doing a big shop, or purchasing especially expensive items, so that you save as much as possible.

Bring a Reusable Bag

Finally, one way to save money when shopping at Whole Foods is to bring your own shopping bags.

This is often overlooked, but Whole Foods deducts ten cents from your total for each reusable bag you bring yourself.

Over time and with big shops, this can really add up! While they don’t charge you for paper bags, you’re missing out on easy savings.

Plus, for heavy items, or those with condensation like chilled drinks or frozen food, you might need to purchase reusable bags from the store, which will cost you at least ninety-nine cents per bag.

And of course, bringing your own bags to the supermarket is also more environmentally friendly, as it helps to reduce waste, while saving you money at the same time!

about the author

Clay Cary
Senior Trends Analyst
As an e-commerce analyst at CouponFollow, Clay enjoys spending his time collaborating with brands to make helpful content for consumers and finding great deals to share on CouponFollow. As a recent college graduate, his primary focus is creating resources for consumers, especially students, to save money through online shopping and everyday life.