With over 2,000 locations in the United States, ALDI is a bargain hunter's dream come true. But even the most loyal of customers have probably never stopped to consider just how it is that a grocer with such low prices can be as successful as they are. Now, customers need not wonder, as the once little-known details behind the franchise have finally come to light. And more than being as interesting look into ALDI's success, the information is actually changing the way customers shop.
1. Best time to shop
The best time to shop at ALDI is actually Wednesday morning.
Affordable seasonal products as well as produce are freshly stocked on Wednesdays, so you'll want to get there right when doors open for the best stuff.
2. Old rival
Oddly, ALDI is sort of related to Trader Joe's. While it's a convoluted story, the chains are independently run by two brothers who previously split due to "business differences."
The stores are still bonded through a two tier system, however, which is why they're similar.
3. Seltzer deal
La Croix lovers, you'll want to sit down for this one. The weird, hipstery obsession over this seltzer is like no other, and ALDI gets that, which might be why it sells variety 24-packs for $7.99 as part of its ALDI Finds program.
Relish the affordable, faint fruity taste of canned air.
Thanks to a partnership with Instacart, you can now shop at ALDI without peeling your sorry butt off the couch.
Order your beloved products online, have them delivered straight to your door, and be one step closer to living a life of luxury.
5. Return policy
ALDI has a killer return policy. Its “Twice as Nice Guarantee” allows you to have your purchased item replaced (even a TV) and your hard-earned coin back!
Though ALDI boasts having the best quality products around, they ultimately let you be the judge of that.
6. Baby supplies
We think it's fair to say that raising kids costs an arm and a leg... and a kidney and an ear.
Luckily for newbie parents, ALDI brags that purchasing diapers, wipes, and formula from its baby line, Little Journey, will save you about $1,200 a year.
7. Bring your own bags
Make sure you bring your own grocery bags with you. While this seems bothersome, not providing free bags is just a part of how ALDI keeps its prices so affordable!
You'll also find reusable totes available for purchase in ALDI stores.
To keep shopping carts from going missing, you'll need a quarter to "rent" one. Once you're done with your shopping and the cart, your quarter will be returned.
Cashiers are more than happy to lend you a quarter!
9. Baked bargains
ALDI knows just how to target pro school-lunch-maker parents. Exactly five days before the expiration date of loaves of bread and other various baked goods, ALDI reprices them at 50% off.
Who doesn't love a good starchy deal?
10. Savings app
ALDI allows customers to use Checkout51, which'll help you save even more cash money. It's a cashback app that aids in keeping the "Save Some, Spend Some" method at equilibrium.
Clipping coupons is officially a thing of the past
11. Hot deals
We know it's easy to immediately beeline for their coveted, ride-or-die products, but check out ALDI's Hot Deals section before you make any impulsive (and pricey) decisions.
The Hot Deals section boasts massively discounted products, with Sundays and Mondays being the best days to save big.
12. ALDI wine
Believe it or not, ALDI is even known to make pretty good wine! Just hear us out.
At just $8, its Exquisite Collection Cotes des Provence Rosé won a Great Value Award at the International Wine Challenge. Hey, even if you don't love it, you'll be too buzzed to care.
13. Free boxes
Let's say you forget to bring your own grocery bag, and you don't feel like spending even one, single buck on another, there are always lonely cardboard shipment boxes lying around for you to stash your foodstuffs in. Nobody will judge you, and who cares if they do!
Money is money.
14. Fun products
In the same vein as Trader Joe's, ALDI has some super bizarre, miscellaneous products that'll pique your interest and probe at your curiosity.
Like how are you going to not buy Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuit Mix?
15. Affordable avocado
The avocado cult is about to go nuts. The price of Hass avocados has nearly doubled within recent years, with the national average price of one now $2.10.
Well, avocadabra! ALDI sometimes sells extra-large Hass 'cados for just 99 cents each.
A fan of ancient grains? ALDI has got you covered.
Prices on all different kinds of grains are astonishingly low. Simply Nature quinoa is just $3.99 per pound, and Earthly Grains Long White Rice is $1.99 for 3 pounds. You get those inexpensive B vitamins.
17. Bag your own
ALDI doesn't hire employees to bag groceries, which is yet another way it keeps prices itty-bitty. So yes, you'll be bagging your own purchases (heaven forbid), but overall the checkout process is speedy considering ALDI slaps several barcodes on its products.
You'll be in and out in no time.
18. Health nuts
ALDI is a health nut at heart. If you're trying to live a heartier lifestyle, ALDI's team of nutrition experts, called the Advisory Council, is specifically designed to give customers healthy eating suggestions.
Also, its house brand is free of harmful oils, synthetic colors, and MSG.
If you've got a gluten allergy and are desperate for economical food that doesn't taste like cardboard, ALDI's gluten-free line of goodies, liveGfree, was bestowed with the 2018 Gluten-Free Buyers Guide Award.
The guide suggests trying the Cocoa Loco Baked Chewy Bars!
20. Perimeter shopping
ALDI shoppers mastered saving money with secrets that stores don't want you to know. For instance, if you're only looking to grab the essentials — bread, milk, eggs — shop around the perimeter of the store.
Avoiding the center aisles will let you resist the temptation of junk food.
21. Name brand products
From time to time, Aldi sells more well-known name brand products like Coke.
It's simply not worth it to buy them from here, as the prices don't compare to those of local supermarkets.
Potato chips are a lot of people's favorite thing to snack on and for good reason. Salty, crunchy, and satisfying: what's not to like?
Well when it comes to Aldi's Clancy's brand chips, apparently a lot. They're just not that good.
23. Toilet paper
While the quality isn't necessarily subpar at Aldi's, the bang for your buck just isn't there when purchasing toilet paper from the store.
You'd be better off visiting a different chain where you can really get your money's worth.
24. Dishwashing detergent
The product has been complained about by countless customers, with one writing that the gel "leaves cloudy marks all over my glasses and plates and spots on my silverware."
So, quite literally, the opposite of what it's supposed to do. Definitely, one to avoid.
25. Sandwich bags
The re-sealable bags sold at Aldi's are poor in quality for a number of reasons. First off, they break easily — not a great quality in a bag.
And to make matters, worse, many people have complained about an odd smell they have to them.
When it comes to products like razors, shampoo, and lotion, the quality isn't the problem per se but, rather, the price.
You can find these items for much lower costs at different stores.
27. Cheap coffee
Aldi's offers a wide selection of coffee brands, and some of them are better than others.
But while Daily Basics is their cheapest offering at only 17 cents a pound, it leaves much to be desired when it comes to taste.
Aldi's brand of yogurt just isn't very tasty, according to the opinions of many reviewers. Some have called it too sweet, and one commentator even remarked that her kids wouldn't go near the stuff.
That's when you know it's bad.
29. Frozen sushi
Frozen sushi is a divisive product to begin with, and Aldi's version fails to settle the debate.
Raw fish just isn't something that should ever be in proximity to a microwave, and for good reason.
Aldi's brands of cereal are knock-offs of well-known lines such as Honey Nut Cheerios and Lucky Charms. The packaging is so similar you might not even notice the difference...until you take a bite.
The taste simply does not measure up.
Similarly to the cereal, Aldi's brands of soda leave much to be desired.
Their "Cola" may look like Coke, but take one sip, and you'll realize just how lacking in quality it is.
32. Bulk buys
One of the things that makes Aldi's so popular is that it provides consumers with low prices even when not buying a large quantity of product.
However, if you do need to buy en masse, price-wise it makes more sense to stop by your local Costco.
While the meat may be pretty cheap at Aldi's, beef and chicken are products you probably want to invest a little more in for the sake of quality.
The selection at Aldi's is severely lacking.
Buying fruits and vegetables at Aldi's can be a hit or a miss, but too often it's the latter.
Cheaper produce can be closer to expiring, mushy, or hiding some rot.
35. Cat litter
Cats depend on us for their care, so it's important to be extra attentive when buying products they need to survive.
Aldi's cat litter has been described as "dusty," and while it may seem like a bargain, it's just not worth it.
Given that butter is such a common ingredient and is required in virtually every recipe, it makes sense not to skimp out on quality.
You may save a dollar or two buying Aldi brand butter, but your dishes will suffer the consequences.
While Aldi's clothing is inexpensive, it's cheap for a reason.
Consumer reviews all state that not only is the apparel poor in quality, but it's also hard to assess what you're getting: The packaging makes it impossible to try on before purchasing.
38. "Specialty" products
Aldi's has a number of so-called specialty products, often labeled as "Aldi Finds." These items are often actually good in price and quality.
The catch? They disappear from shelves, so don't get attached.
39. Lawn equipment
Aldi's seems to have it all, even down to lawn equipment like planters and rakes. However the durability is not at all there.
These are items you're going to ideally own for years, so it's better to invest in quality.
40. Small appliances
Similar to lawn equipment, the prices on small appliances like coffee makers and slow cookers make them appealing, but they break down easily and simply don't work well as their more expensive counterparts.