couponing in the holy land

Frugal food shopping for the Anglo Israeli

Archive for the month “August, 2013”

The final countdown

No, I am not talking about Syria, although I will get to that later.  Tishrei is right around the corner, and we need to be prepared.  Tonight is the night to plan the next few days so you don’t get caught unawares and out of time.


If you have school-aged children, know that there are only three days this week- Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.   Right now- make sure you have three sets of school outfits washed and ready, three sets of meals for school, and three water bottles if you can. (We fill the bottle about 1/4 – 1/3 full with water and put it in the freezer.  In the morning we add cold water and the water stays cold all day.)  Make sure they don’t need to bring anything special to school for the holiday- if so, put it on the calendar and get it now.  Now hopefully you can “forget” about school for now.


Do you have any last-minute haircut appointments, doctor appointments etc. to schedule?  Be efficient- call tonight and leave a message or book on the internet.  I was just surprised to call a hair salon which has a full messaging service at 11:00 at night!

Rosh Hashana

First things first- make a list of what still needs to be done.  Break it down into the following categories:

  1. Guests– if you have, confirm if they have allergies.   Get the guest rooms and bathrooms ready.  What time are they coming?  Do you have to pick them up?  If so, from where?  If you are a guest, find out what you can bring/make/do to help your host.  If you really want to make the hostess happy, offer to bring some already-seeded rimon 🙂
  2. Going away?– if you are, make sure your neighbor has your key in case of emergency, timers are set, pet/plant sitters arranged.
  3. Laundry– make sure your tablecloths, towels, linens and holiday clothes are washed.   If you have a European machine, you know how how long it takes so plan your time accordingly.
  4. Table– do you have enough tables and chairs?  if not, arrange to borrow from a gamach or a friend now.  Do you have enough tablecloths, silverware, plates, serving dishes, napkins, bowls and cups?  If not, figure out how many disposable items you will need to purchase and get it soon. We found very nice biodegradable plasticware that looks just like the Solo brand and wasn’t too expensive.  Don’t forget candles, matches and long-lasting candles.
  5. Food– Make an inventory of your freezer and start planning meals if you haven’t already.  We all need to purchase fruits and vegetables this week- don’t forget apples, rimon, dates and a new fruit.  Most stores are open Saturday night and have extended hours this week to get your last minute shopping done, but don’t go tonight or Sunday for chicken- wait for Monday or later.  You might be tempted to shop for groceries online, but just remember that you are one of many so expect many items to be out of stock.  You don’t want your order to come Tuesday night missing half the items and you have to run out Wednesday morning for them.
  6. Clothing–  do you have enough for a three day holiday?  I know my son already outgrew the last set of clothing we bought him and we have so far been unsuccessful in dragging him in to purchase another -gasp- three outfits.
  7. Kids– make a list of everything they can do and have them do it.  If it makes your life easier, bribe them.  We have offered 10 agorot- 1 shekel per chore (depending on their ages; can be done multiple times) or three levels of rewards- ice cream, pizza, movie depending on how many they do and whether they work together or not.   I will post some recipes/activities to keep them busy Wednesday while you finish your last minute chores.
  8. Beit knesset– if you go, do you have your seat/membership paid for?  If you can, find out where your seat is beforehand so it will be easier to find it during services.  Do you have enough machzorim?  Do you know where they are?  If you are not going, do you know who can blow the shofar for you?   If your beit knesset has a tzedaka campaign during the holidays (selling honors or having someone come in from another agency), budget now what you are willing/able to spend.   Discuss it with your husband/wife so there are no surprises.
  9. Syria– I said I would get back to that topic.  Although everything is still up in the air, nobody was ever harmed by being prepared.  Stock food/water/medicine in your protective room.  Make sure you have the necessary supplies in case of emergency.  Read the Emergency Situation Preparation Guide by Pikud HaOref.  Check out the Pikud HaOref web site for more information.  If for some reason you do not have your protective masks, click here for a list of distribution centers.  If you do have, make sure they are the right sizes for your family members.

That’s it for now- if you have that all written out, you deserve a break!


What foods are price controlled in Israel?

With the notification that the price of whipping cream 38% and gevina levana 5% will now be controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture I thought it would be best for consumers to know exactly what products are controlled and what the price should be.  Stores are not allowed to charge more than the maximum price.

Controlled by the Ministry of Finance:

  • Bread
  • Salt

Controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture:

  • Milk
  • Certain cheeses
  • Butter
  • Certain dairy products
  • Eggs (12 pack only)

Prices (including 18% maam):

  • Lechem achid (keheh) or white bread (unwrapped)- 750 grams for 5.11 shekels (4.33 in Eilat)
  • Challah or yeast bread- 500 grams for 5.58 shekels (4.73 in Eilat)
  • Lechem achid (keheh) or white bread (wrapped)- 750 grams for 7.67 shekels (6.50 in Eilat)
  • Wrapped sliced white bread- 500 grams for 6.82 shekels (5.78 in Eilat)
  • Regular kitchen salt, “excellent” kitchen salt, “excellent” table salt,  “excellent” kosher salt- 1 kg for 2.09 shekels (1.77 in Eilat)
  • 3% milk in 1L bags- 5.28 shekels (4.47 in Eilat)
  • 1% milk in 1L bags- 4.95 shekels (4.20 in Eilat)
  • 3% milk in 1L cartons- 6.54 shekels (5.55 in Eilat)
  • 1% milk in 1L cartons- 6.11 shekels (5.18 in Eilat)
  • Eshel 4.5% fat – 200 grams for 1.66 shekels (1.44 in Eilat)
  • Gil 3% fat- 200 grams for 1.52 shekels (1.29 in Eilat)
  • Sour cream 15% fat- 200 ml for 2.47 shekels (2.09 in Eilat)
  • Butter in 100 gram packages for 4.08 shekels (3.46 in Eilat)
  • Emek cheese- 1kg for 45.96 shekels (38.95 in Eilat)
  • Gilboa cheese- 1kg for 43.72 shekels (37.05 in Eilat)
  • Extra large eggs- 14 shekels (11.90 in Eilat)
  • Large eggs- 12.90 shekels (10.95 in Eilat)
  • Medium eggs- 11.90 shekels (10.10 in Eilat)

Prices are valid as of 2 June 2013.

Want to read more?  Click here to read Part 2.

Back to school specials for parents

Today is the second day of school for most children, which means the parents can start to get back to their regular schedule- traffic, office politics, and maybe even a quiet moment with a cuppa and the newspaper.

Since next week (!!!) starts the month full of holidays, I thought we could browse the sales in today’s newspaper together. So grab your cuppa (coffee or tea- depending on when you are reading this)- I will wait until you are ready.

Shufersal Deal

  • Vegetables- 10 kg for 20 shekels
  • Chocolates for 10 shekels
  • Multiples of canned vegetables for 10 shekels
  • With purchases over 100 shekels there are discounts on meat and fish

Chetzi Chinam

  • Yad Mordechai olive oil 2 liters for 60 shekels
  • Yad Mordechai honey- 350 grams for 13 shekels
  • Sanfrost frozen vegetables- buy two get one free
  • White flour- 4 for 10 shekels
  • Very cheap prices on meat- says tari/fresh but I am wary (see aliyah tip #2-  beef)
  • Open motzei shabbat 31 Aug
  • Arbella pasta- 4 for 10 shekels

Mega Bool

  • Carmel Tirosh grape juice- 1 liter for 16 shekels
  • 6 pack of Coca Cola- 30 shekels
  • Taster’s Choice coffee- 200 grams for 30 shekels
  • Chicken hind quarters for 15 shekels per kg with a purchase of 250 shekels or more, 3 kg maximum
  • Onions and tomatoes- 2 shekels/kg with a purchase over 100 shekels (3kg max)- 200 shekels allows up to 6kg.
  • Beets, pumpkin, white and red potatoes- 3 shekels/kg with a purchase over 100 shekels (3kg max)- 200 shekels allows up to 6kg.

Co-op Shop

  • Tirosh wine- 1 liter for 10 shekels
  • Osem spaghetti- 3 for 10 shekels
  • Emek Hefer honey- 250 grams for 10 shekels (check to make sure it has a Tav Teken)

Yesh (coupons only)

  • Tzabar chummus- 850 grams for 8 shekels
  • Carmel Tirosh grape juice- 1 liter for 12 shekels (great deal!)
  • Shmurat Teva toilet paper- 48 rolls for 28 shekels
  • Ariel laundry detergent- 6 kg for 50 shekels
  • Titulim premium for 29 shekels
  • Most stores open motzei shabbat

Office Depot

  • Spend 100 shekels on office supplies and you can get an orthopedic backpack for 19.90 shekels (not 2013 models).  Cannot use backpacks and kalmarim to get to 100 shekels.  (This is a good time to look for a nondescript one that they wouldn’t find out of fashion so quickly)

What else is in the paper?

  • Yisrael HaYom’s daily survey how much certain items cost in different countries.  Today- tomatoes.  Israel- 4.99 shekels/kg, England 11.29 shekels/kg and the US for 8 shekels/kg.  They do warn us that prices are about to change soon.
  • Economics Minister Naftali Bennet says opening the doors to imported products will increase competition and drive down prices.   If there is no competition, we need to make it.  Manufacturers in Israel have traditionally been supported by The Israeli Standards Institute whose legislation allows them to monopolize the market.  The Trachtenberg Report forced them to adopt international standards which will allow the market to be flooded with more imported products and hopefully drive prices down. (Sources: Arutz 7 and Globes)
  • Whipping cream (38% fat) and gevina levana 5% fat will now be be subsidized along with other agricultural products (for a complete list click here– I will translate in my next post)

Gossip in the supermarket;

  • Our butcher tells us that all the meat prices will be going up next week.  If you haven’t stocked your freezer yet, do so now!

Rami Levy gives you the cheapest groceries for the holiday

Yediot Ahronot surveyed the prices for holiday goods sold in supermarkets in Beersheva, Jerusalem, Modiin, and Gush Dan.

The cheapest was Rami Levy in all 4 cities.

Check it out for yourself!

Back to school special: aruchat eser stickers from Strauss

Strauss is offering free stickers with your child’s picture and cute sayings on them to put on your child’s lunch.  I got them last year as well and my youngest one liked it a lot.

Go to Strauss’s Facebook page and upload a photo.  The stickers will be mailed to your house.

Free printable Disney Junior activity book (Hebrew)

Click on this link to print out a pdf full of fun activities for young Disney fans.

Moraz lice treatment coupons- expire 31 Dec 2013


Coupon for 30 shekels off your Vardinon online purchase

Go to Vardinon’s web site, give them your name and email and a coupon for 30 shekels off your online purchase will be emailed to you. Not valid in stores.

Lee Cooper flip-flop coupon- expires 4 Sept 2013

Valid only at Gali stores.

Papaya back to school sneaker sale

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