couponing in the holy land

Frugal food shopping for the Anglo Israeli

Archive for the tag “sales”

Food News Roundup

Too small for a full blog post but too large to ignore.  Here are the latest tidbits from various news sources:

1.   As we all know, winter is almost over and we have not had the greatest rainfall this season.  What does that mean?  Farmers will have to purchase water instead of relying on the rainfall leading to increased prices for fruits, vegetables, locally-produced meat, and milk.   Source: NRG

2.   Ayelet Shaked’s bill to increase the punishment for trespassing private agricultural land passed the second and third reading.  Judges will now be able to sentence trespassers up to six months in jail.  For those of you who are not aware, the beef industry has been slowly strangled by Bedouins who trespass and damage farmers’ property in the hopes that they will leave and the Bedouins will then take over the land.  Hashomer Hahadash was formed to defend the farmers’ land and has an overwhelming amount of requests for help.  I highly recommend becoming acquainted with this organization.  You can learn about them from these videos:

If you were wondering what happened to Zionism in Israel, it is here with Hashomer Hahadash.  Source: Facebook

3.   The fighting between Co-op shop and Tnuva continues.  Co-op purchased minimarkets in the “periphery” and claims that Tnuva won’t supply dairy products to them.  Tnuva claims that Co-op won’t pay their bill.  The court ruled that Tnuva has to supply the periphery with dairy products and Co-op has to pay their bill. Next on the agenda- peace in the Middle East.  Source: Ynet

4.   Rumors abound that Tnuva will be sold to the Chinese company Bright Food.  The farmers protest.  Will this lower the price of food?  Not likely.  Source: Ynet

5.   In case you think I am picking on Tnuva, this latest story is about Shufersal.  In December, the Customs Authority increased the amount of items that can be brought in with tax, including apples.  Shufersal has decided to completely eliminate locally-grown apples in their stores since then.  You might think that therefore the prices have gone down, but they have actually gone up significantly:

מחירי תפוחים בשופרסל. 2013: תוצרת הארץ וייבוא נטול מכס. 2014: רק ייבוא נטול מכס
מחיר ממוצע לק”ג/בשקלים ינואר פברואר תחילת מרס
מחירי מוזהב ב-2013 7.99 7.17 7.29
מחירי מוזהב ב-2014 9.90 9.9 9.92
שיעור התייקרות 23% 38% 36%
מחירי גרנד סמית ב-2013 7.99 7.31 7.70
מחירי גרנד סמית ב-2014 9.17 9.90 9.72
שיעור התייקרות 14% 35% 26%
מחירי סטארקינג ב-2013 8.12 7.92 7.31
מחירי סטארקינג ב-2014 9.17 8.86 9.37
שיעור ההתייקרות 12% 11% 18%
מחירי פינק קריפס 2013 8.44 8.99 10.95
מחירי פינק קריפס 2014 13.15 13.19 11.26
שיעור ההתייקרות 56% 46% 3%

In January, prices of apples jumped up between 12% and 56% while Shufersal (like all other supermarkets) are not paying customs duties!  So much for opening the borders to lower prices (do you remember who said that? Hint: it was in a previous blog post).  Source: Ynet

6.   This last item might come as no surprise to everyone- people are not buying as much as they used to in the supermarkets!  Even with “dramatic sales”, the food is not flying off the shelves.

מכירות כספיות מכירות כמותיות
כלל השוק 2.5%- 4.5%-
שופרסל ומגה 5.6%- 7.9%-
רשתות אחרות (כרמי לוי, יינות ביתן, ויקטורי) 1.7%- 4.7%-
מינימרקטים פרטיים 3.1% 4%

Shufersal and Mega have lost the most, while the private minimarket has actually gained.  The charedi supermarket chains have also increased their percentage of the market, possibly because of the lower prices.    Source: Ynet

While I don’t really feel sorry for the supermarket chains, especially after seeing their “dramatic sales” of apples in the previous article, I really don’t feel bad for them because very soon their sales will be sky high within the next few weeks for Pesach.

That’s all for today.  Enjoy!

20 ways to save money this winter

The advent of winter brings with it a laundry list of purchases, changes, and new responsibilities.  Motzash from Mekor Rishon is here to help you get through the winter peacefully and frugally.

  1. Tires: Winter brings rain, and wet roads causes cars to slide.  Make sure your tires are in good shape before you have an accident.  If you need new tires, go to “Tzmigei Anton” on Yefet Street in Yafo.   You will find people waiting in double and triple lines to get tires at the best prices around with room to bargain even more.
  2. Carpets: Stone floors can be unbearable in the winter, so now is the time to cover them with a nice carpet.  In Nachalat Benyamin in Tel Aviv, you can find cloth stores such as “Herzl”, “Designers” and “Yaakov Sedekit”.  If you put on the right face, you can pick any cloth that strikes your fancy and they will turn it into a carpet.  It isn’t perfect, but it is comfortable. If you insist on a ready-made carpet, we found the best quality and lowest priced carpets at- you won’t believe it- Ikea.  While you can pay 3000 shekels for a carpet in a real store, the highest price you will pay in Ikea is 1495 shekels, but most of them are around 500 shekels.  The one we picked out which had a Turkish pattern cost 345 shekels, so we had 5 shekels left to buy a hot dog. [Agreed- we have a great carpet from Ikea for a great price.]
  3. Clothes dryer: Forget labels, forget specific brands: the most important thing about a clothes dryer are the tears that fall when you receive your monthly electricity bill.  To reduce the tear count, get a dryer that saves energy- A-C, but preferably A.  They are more expensive, but the price will balance out over time.  Get a simple dryer with as few as possible buttons.  Don’t bargain on the price- bargain on the service contract.  The dryers are cheap enough but the repairs are costly.  Pick a model that costs approximately 1500 shekels, go to an industrial area and go from shop to shop with a written price quote and see if you can get it knocked down.  Stores to try: Shekem Electronika, Machsanei Hashmal and Avi Super.
  4. Cooking: We eat all year round, but in the winter cooking takes on additional comfort- from the warmth to the smells.  For a great blog that helps you cook within your budget, go to . [Agreed!]
  5. Air conditioners: Most people say that it is cheaper to buy an air conditioner in the winter.  It seems logical- in the summer people are desperate to pay any price to keep themselves from sweating.  Buying an air conditioner in the winter is like buying ice cubes in Antarctica.  However, since many people are using their air conditioners to heat as well as to cool, the prices aren’t dropping as expected.  The best time to buy, therefore, is the spring or fall, when the weather is nice and you don’t feel the need to bundle up or cool down.  What’s more, the technician will have more time to install the air conditioner  since it is a quiet time for him/her as well.
  6. Books: Everyone has a pile of books gathering dust that you meant to read this summer but was so busy enjoying the nice weather you didn’t get a chance to.   The cold weather makes you want to go under the blanket and snuggle with a good book, preferably a classic.  If you are in the need of a classic, go to “Sefarim bakfar” on Moshav Bnai Zion, where you can find new books at great prices and slightly damaged ones for even better prices.  In addition, during Chanukah you can stop by the Yediot Sefarim clearance sale in Holon.  For more details, go to .  
  7. Coats: There are a lot of clothing items that you can sacrifice quality on- socks, underwear, shirts, and even shoes.  Those are items you change often.  A warm coat is something you keep for  very long time.  You can find great coats at , a Chinese online store for 20-30 dollars and most items have free shipping.  Another store is, a virtual mall where you can find good quality coats for 30-60 dollars, most with free shipping.  If you like to try on before buying, go to “Machsanei Hayivoan” at 61 HaYarkon Street in Bnai Brak.  You will find (mostly men’s) clothing from names like Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Nautica and Calvin Klein at unbelievable prices.
  8. Down blankets: Honestly, winter isn’t that bad here.  You can get away with a nice wool blanket for most of the winter.  But there are a few days in January which are so terrible that all you want to do is jump under the covers of  nice warm down blanket and drown out the sounds of pouring rain.  To do that, get yourself over to the Freed Factory Outlet in the Barkan industrial area.  Or if you have strength, you can go to the “Yad Gittel” gamach on 30 Shaulzon Street in Har Nof, which sells quality down blankets at great prices.  For more information call 052-3882751.
  9. Winter wraps: With the inventing of fleece in the past ten years, there came a similar invention- the fleece throw, which goes well with a chick flick, hot cocoa and marshmallows.  For some reason, however, these pieces of cloth cost around 60-70 shekels and can go up to 150 shekels.   Since we re talking about a piece of cloth, the simplest solution is to go to your nearest cloth store, pick a color, pay a few shekels per meter and that’s it- you just need to put the popcorn in the microwave.  If you are already there, cut an additional 30 centimeters and you have yourself  nice scarf.  Where are the cloth stores? Try Yitzchak Kairi on 23 Nahalat Binyamin in Tel Aviv or “House of Leftovers- Cloth Mall” on 2 King George Street in Jerusalem.
  10. Children’s clothing: The winter weather forces us to get another layer for our little ones, unless you are the type to allow them out in belly shirts and 3/4 capris.  Instead of trudging from store to store, maybe finding what you want and maybe not, try shopping online.  This is not so developed yet in Israel, but there are stores in chutz l’aretz which ship to Israel for free: next from England and aliexpress from China.  These stores have everything you need for your children from top to bottom.  The prices are not as good as the Strauss bazaar, but the quality is impeccable (boys jeans for 40-60 shekels, fancy dresses for 120 shekels).  The clothing from aliexpress is not as good as next, but if your ganenet doesnt care, neither should you. [I have a friend that buys exclusively from these stores and is thrilled with the quality and prices.  She hasn’t paid meches or shipping ever.]
  11. Shoes: Even if you aren’t a child, winter is the time to switch to warmer shoes.  If you are looking for brand names, try the outlet center in Holon, where you can find Nike, Lady Comfort, and Nine West.  In the surplus store of Reebok, for example, you can get discounts on sneakers of 30-70%.  If you are in Jerusalem, go to one of the branches of “Sport Li v’Lach” in the city center where you can find Blundstone boots for 400 shekels.  Another place to check out is ש.א.ל. in the Israel Aerospace Industries Center, which is only open to people who work there.  There you can find brands such as Nimrod, Elefanten, Nike, New Balance, Timberland, Sketchers and more for 30% off or more.
  12. Babies: Winter is a busy time for births, and in general we like to say that “we spare nothing for the baby”; however there are places you can save here as well.  New and old mothers will delight in the Shilav outlet store in Airport City where you can find discounts of 50-70% off the store prices.  Another worthwhile place is “Baby Sale”in Bnai Brak, which sells import surplus and display items at great prices.  For the Northerners reading this post, in Kfar Yircha, go to the store “My Baby” which is considered the high point of all journeys in this department.  The store is 1000 square meters and has a wide range of baby items at very attractive prices.
  13. Outlets: Like other American trends, outlet shopping has also made aliyah to Israel and you can find them in the city and country.  For now we will focus on two of them: the Polgat outlet in Kenyon Sirkin in Petach Tikva and the FOX outlet in Ligad Center in Modiin.  Kenyon Sirkin has become a mecca for outlet shoppers, but the Polgat store has everything you will need for the warm weather for much cheaper than other stores.  The FOX store in Modiin sells their clothing for 1/3 the regular store price.
  14. Chulent: What can we do, this paragraph is only valid one day a week- Thursday night.  If you are looking for a warm hot meal that won’t break the bank, go to the cities-that-never-sleep- Bnai Brak and Charedi Jerusalem- and get piping hot chulent for cheap.  There are tens of places like this, mostly without a specific address, which is part of the fun, but for this project we picked four- two from each city.  In Bnai Brak, try “HaMisada HaYehudit” on Jabotinsky Street near Machon Mor and “Shteisel” near beit haknesset/tefillah factory Itzkovitz.  In Jerusalem try “Haimeshe Essen” (flour mill on Ramban street) and “Aliz” in the Beit Yisrael neighborhood- between the Nechama bakery and the kerosene burner store.
  15. Eilat: Really, it seems so obvious.  The weather is nice and there are just as many attractions in the winter as in the summer.  You can walk the boardwalk without feeling like you entered a 1500-degree oven.  In the past few years the dati leumi crowd has discovered Eilat for Chanukah- so much so that even Mishkefet which gives tours of Yesha is offering a 3-day trip to Eilat during Chanukah.
  16. New York: OK, travel to chutz l’aretz isn’t cheap, and especially a transatlantic journey.  But if your heart is set on New York, the winter is the time to go.  Flight prices go down in the winter, however since there aren’t low cost or charter flights such as EasyJet directly from Israel to New York, try flights with a connection.  The cheapest airlines are Turkish Airlines and Aeroflot.  It is also worth it to check in with El Al, who can surprise you sometimes with direct flights for up to 1000 dollars for a round trip ticket.
  17. Sufganiot: Once upon a time, sufganiot were recognizable. Today, however, they have transformed to something that requires a doctorate to understand exactly what you are eating.  If you are looking for a bit of nostalgia, go to “Shuva Smachot” in Bnai Brak for 2 shekel sufganiot or the supermarket chain “Yaynot Bitan” where you can get lots of flavors and fillings for only 1 shekel each.
  18. Gym membership: Everybody gains weight in the winter.  What can you do when the cold increases your appetite and the driving rain forces you to heat up some carbohydrates? Especially when you know you can hide a few calories under a coat.  This is exactly the time to take advantage of the deals on gym memberships- a year membership is a year membership, whether it starts in December or June.  For example, Studio C has a 9-month and 12-month deal and if you sign up for a 12- month membership at “Country Dekel” in Tel Aviv you get an extra 4 months for free.
  19. Winter Wedding: Everyone wants to get married in the spring or summer, but unfortunately there isn’t spring all year round.  But don’t put off that wedding- winter is a great time to get married as well.  Why?  Because everything is cheaper in the winter.  For example “Eretz Kedem” costs 60 shekels less per person in the winter than in the summer.  Not only the hall is cheaper, but also the photographer, the band, and the decorations.  There are other advantages to a winter wedding- having the rain come down while you and your loved ones are inside creates an intimacy you can’t get in the summer.  The lighting is also gentler in the winter and you can get special winter foods served as well.
  20. Other things to put off until the winter: Some things have their season, and with it comes summer prices and winter prices.  Renting an apartment, for example, is cheaper in the winter because most people move in July-August so there are less choices- less competition- lower prices.  Moving costs are also cheaper in the winter- a four room apartment will cost 2000-2500 shekels to move in the summer and 1500 shekels in the winter.  Another item that has lower prices in the winter is the price to renew your passport online.  From March-October the price is 245 shekels but from November-February it costs 190 shekels.

Source: Motzash from Mekor Rishon, Edition 136, 22/11/2013

Mega Bool sales- good through 28 Oct 2013

Shufersal Deal sales- expires 30 Sept 2013

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!

Chetzi Chinam Rosh Hashana 2012 sales

Chetzi Chinam will be open motzei Shabbat on 8 Sept and 15 Sept.


Back to school sales at Chetzi Chinam- expires 2 Sept 2012

Rami Levy August 2012 sales

Rosh Hashana alert- wine, kitniyot (for those of you who use black eyed peas for lubiya), puff pastry dough


Rosh Hashana shopping

Yes, I DID say Rosh Hashana shopping!

Erev Rosh Hashana is Sunday, September 16.  That is only 3 weeks after the kids are back at school.

Now is the time to start working on your menu!  If there are certain foods you make every year, such as the simanim, now is the time to start “collecting.”

I know that it is a hard time to start thinking about shelling out money, what with kaytana, school books, etc., but it won’t get any easier if you buy it all at once in September.

Some things you shouldn’t buy now, like gefilte fish- that is always a loss leader.   Other things you can stock up on.  For example, we use spinach as one of our simanim, and we go through a lot of spinch burecas.  I picked up our favorite brand of burecas today at 2/30 shekels at Rami Levy.

I will be watching the sales and will post a Rosh Hashana alert if I see a good deal.

Look for the rimon for a Rosh Hashana deal:

Of course, if you have a large freezer, you can also start some of your baking or preparing DUMP chicken recipes (for more on DUMP chicken, check out Once a Month Cooking).  Remember, after Rosh Hashana, we have 3 more weeks of holidays- the more you do ahead of time, the more you can enjoy Chol Hamoed Sukkot with your family!

Rami Levy July Sales

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