A bargain hunter has explained when to shop at the major supermarkets to make the most of discount sticker bargains. 

The co-founder of the money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk has rounded up the best times to visit the likes of Lidl, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons and more in his experience.

His advice follows news that one shopper and LatestDeals.co.uk member saved £180 in a year by shopping yellow and red sticker-reduced items from supermarkets.

Smart shopper, Sophie Reddy, from Liverpool, said: “Every week I scour the supermarket shelves for reduced items to add to my food shop.

"If you know when to get to stores, you can find popular items like biscuits, cheese, cupboard essentials, desserts and more at reduced prices”.

Sophie explained how she shopped over the course of a week to the LatestDeals community: “I normally go to the supermarket a couple of times throughout the week, and I’ve found I can save up to 44% by keeping an eye out for reduced products.

"This week I went to Aldi and Lidl and managed to find 8 discounted items”.

She added: " “Starting off strong, I was chuffed to get a loaf of Warburtons bread reduced from £1.40 to 98p. I always say if you wouldn’t have bought it full price, you’re not really saving anything, but a loaf of bread is always a staple in my house.

"Plus, depending on the best before date, you can always chuck it in the freezer as well”.

Sophie also pointed out that generally, supermarkets will reduce yellow sticker items if they have damaged packaging, excess stock, or are nearing their best-before date.

The shopper continued: “You need to be careful buying fresh items, such as fruit and veg. Make sure you’ll be using them quickly if you manage to get your hands on them.

"For example, I managed to get some spring onions reduced from 49p to 39p, and Seedless Red Grapes down from £1.79 to just 99p. I make sure to prioritise using these items up early in the week”.

Sophie went on to say:  “My other finds of the week include a tub of Covent Garden Vegetable Soup reduced from £1.75 to £1.22, Bramwells Chinese Style Marinade down from 85p to 49p, and a large piece of Mature Stilton Cheese reduced from £2.69 to £1.88”.

Sharing her sweet finds, she concluded:  “For sweet treats I managed to get my hands on a pack of Half Coated Chocolate Cookies down from £1.25 to 99p, and an Aldi Protein Pudding down from £1.19 to 99p”.

“These items definitely won’t keep me going for the week, but I can use them to supplement my weekly shop and save where I can.

"I saved around £3.48 on these items, and if you take these finds as an example of a typical week of savings, that means I save around £180.96 on my food shopping per year”.

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Tom Church, the Latest Deals co-founder said: “Sophie has shown how savvy shopping can really add up.

"Sophie saved £3.48 on her items which may not sound like a lot, but consistent saving over the year results in shoppers saving up to £180.

“If you’re planning on following Sophie’s lead and hunting for reduced items in supermarkets, you’ll need to time your visit well. In my experience, the best time to visit shops varies."

Tom has shared some of the best times to shop at the popular supermarkets, according to his experience:

  • Aldi - clearance stickers are red and usually applied from 8am with up to 50% off. This may increase to 75% as food approaches its use-by date.
  • Asda - reductions start in the mornings but there may be second rounds of discounts from 7pm.
  • Co-Op - clearance labels are yellow and discount times vary from store to store. Final reductions can be up to 75% off.
  • Iceland - yellow stickers mark reduced items and discounts are made in the morning.
  • Lidl - discounted items are marked with orange clearance stickers usually giving 30% off from the mornings. Sometimes there are green 'waste not!' stickers labelled at 20p or 70p.
  • Marks & Spencer - yellow sticker items are marked down in the mornings. Discounts can be substantial, as M&S items usually have a higher starting price.
  • Morrisons - the best reductions are in the evening. However, you can get £3.49 Magic Boxes through the Too Good To Go app which contain around £10 worth of food.
  • Sainsbury's - discounts are usually 25% off and are marked down at 1pm. They increase up to 50% at 5pm and then again up to 75% at 8pm.
  • Tesco - yellow sticker items are reduced in the afternoons, particularly on fresh meat, fish, fruit, veg, and bakery items.
  • Waitrose - discount times vary from store to store. Usually, markdowns are made in the afternoon and reductions increase towards closing time.

Tom concluded: “It’s also worth keeping an eye out for any other supermarket deals you can take advantage of.

"For example, lots of supermarkets offer discounts when you do your first online order”.