You probably have AA batteries scattered around your house. You use them for your remote controls, your grandkids’ toys and many other everyday items. Face it, you can’t live without batteries, but somehow we always seem to run out of them.
But before you buy AA batteries, you need to know a few things. First, there are two types of batteries: alkaline and lithium. More to the point, not all batteries are a good value. Does paying more mean you’ll get a better, longer lasting battery?
No, not according to Consumer Reports. They tested 15 brands of AA batteries, including Amazon-branded batteries and Costco’s Kirkland batteries.
The prestigious magazine found that some lower cost batteries are just as good or nearly as good as the most expensive brands. In fact, you’ll be shocked by how you don’t need to break the bank for high-quality batteries that will keep your Christmas presents humming for weeks or months.
Note: Consumer Reports tested batteries in two ways: They used the batteries until they died in toys for one hour a day and in flashlights for four minutes every eight hours.
First things first. You’ve probably noticed that generally speaking, lithium batteries are expensive.
You might be tempted to buy them, thinking that if they cost more they probably last longer. As it turns out, Consumer Reports suggests using lithium batteries sparingly, like in devices that need a quick burst of power or that you don’t use very often.
Note: You can store lithium batteries for up to 15 years. They don’t need to be stored in the refrigerator and they don’t usually spew liquid like older, carbon-zinc batteries did.
Some alkaline batteries performed as well as lithium batteries in Consumer Reports’ test. These batteries are typically less expensive. You may want to use them in devices you use a lot, like your TV remote control and your computer’s wireless mouse.
So, which brands performed best in Consumer Reports’ tests? Both alkaline and lithium batteries were among the best values.
This might surprise you. The top performers included two brands that might have the perception of being “cheap.”
Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand AA alkaline battery had an overall score of 80, out of a possible 100. AmazonBasics Performance AA Alkaline had a 71.
That compares to top-rated brands such as Energizer Ultimate Lithium AA (89), Duracell Quantum AA Alkaline (89) and Rayovac Fusion Advanced AA Alkaline (85).
|One day, in line at the company cafeteria, Joe says to Mike behind him, ‘My elbow hurts like heck. I guess I’d better see a doctor.’
‘Listen, you don’t have to spend that kind of money,’ Mike replies.
There’s a diagnostic computer down at Costco. Just give it a urine sample, and the computer will tell you what’s wrong and what to do about it.
It takes ten seconds and costs ten dollars – a lot cheaper than a doctor.
So, Joe deposits a urine sample in a small jar and takes it to Costco.
He deposits ten dollars and the computer lights up and asks for the urine sample. He pours the sample into the slot and waits.
Ten seconds later, the computer ejects a printout:’You have tennis elbow.
Soak your arm in warm water and avoid heavy activity. It will improve in two weeks.
Thank you for shopping @ Costco’
That evening, while thinking how amazing this new technology was, Joe began wondering if the computer could be fooled.
Joe hurries back to Costco, eager to check the results.
He deposits ten dollars, pours in his concoction, and awaits the results.
The computer prints the following:
Thank you for shopping @ Costco!
Utah-based comedian and YouTube prankster Stuart Edge stuffed himself inside a giant Costco teddy bear to hand out free bear hugs and shows off some moves at a local skate park.
Does Costco really have the best prices? Are there ways to avoid membership fees? What are the worst buys in the store? And what about those Costco coupons.
How to Save at Costco: Krazy Coupon Ladies, Joanie Demer and Heather Wheeler show you all the best hidden savings at Costco including how to shop without a membership, why you don’t need your coupon booklet and how to easily compare prices to Amazon!
Costco pizzas are excellent for this. I haven’t tried this with a frozen pizza yet but imagine the only difference may be a slightly longer cook time.
Cook Time: 9 min
A cheat sheet for saving even more money at major retailers–by knowing their secret price codes.
Several popular retailers use “secret” price codes that can clue you in on whether an item is the best deal at the store or not. Here’s a handy chart you can use while shopping to decode those numbers.
Here are the pricing structures for Costco, Target, Sam’s Club, BJ’s, Home Depot, Gap/Old Navy, Sears, and Office Depot. Look for the price on the tag and if it ends in one of these numbers or letters/symbols, you’ll know if you’re getting a really good deal or just the regular price. (Marked down just means it’s on sale, Final Markdown is the lowest price the store will drop it to, Clearance/Discontinued means the store isn’t gong to restock it.)
If you only remember one thing, though, just look for the price ending in any number other than 9 or 99, and you’ll know you’re getting less than full retail price.
You better watch out Barack, something like this may put California in play this November.
Gasoline station owners in the Los Angeles area including Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST) are beginning to shut pumps as the state’s oil refiners started rationing supplies and spot prices surged to a record.
Valero Energy Corp. (VLO) stopped selling gasoline on the spot, or wholesale, market in Southern California and is allocating deliveries to customers. Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) is also rationing fuel to U.S. West Coast terminal customers. Costco’s outlet in Simi Valley, 40 miles (64 kilometers) northwest of Los Angeles, ran out of regular gasoline yesterday and was selling premium fuel at the price of regular.
The gasoline shortage “feels like a hurricane to me, but it’s the West Coast,” Jeff Cole, Costco’s vice president of gasoline, said by telephone yesterday. “We’re obviously extremely disheartened that we are unable to do this, and we’re pulling fuel from all corners of California to fix this.”
Spot gasoline in Los Angeles has surged $1 a gallon this week to a record $1.45 a gallon premium versus gasoline futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange, data compiled by Bloomberg show. That’s the highest level for the fuel since at least November 2007, when Bloomberg began publishing prices there. On an outright basis, the fuel has jumped to $4.3929 a gallon.
Wondering if a Costco membership is really worth it? This grocery store vs. Costco experiment compares food prices.
Buying in bulk at Costco can save your family lots of money—depending on what you buy. To find out exactly which items are the best deals at the wholesale club, personal finance blog Squawkfox did a shopping experiment comparing unit prices on fresh, frozen, and packaged goods between a local grocery and Costco.
The results are interesting, with the local grocery store coming out ahead for fresh foods (fruits, cheese, chicken, and milk), but Costco saving almost 21% on everything else priced out:
Importantly, the quality of the frozen foods at Costco was better than the supermarket’s generic brand.
In short, a Costco membership might make sense for buying in bulk once a month for those strategic items (frozen foods, canned goods, diapers, etc.)—keeping in mind our previously tip to avoid buying soda, toilet paper, and office supplies at Costco because you can get these at the supermarket on sale cheaper with coupons. Of course, your mileage may vary, so definitely check prices yourself, but the figures above may give you an idea if shopping Costco for certain foods is worth it or not for you. Check out the full article for more tips on making the most of a Costco membership and saving more at Costco.
Either our nation’s obesity problem is just as bad as they say, or Costco knows something we don’t, because the big box store is now offering enough food to last you a year for a about $800.
The monstrous, 5,000 serving package, courtesy of food outfitter Shelf Reliance claims their end days buffet contains “only top-of-the-line products,” “developed with everyday menu planning in mind.”
Shelf Reliance is your premier source for food storage and emergency preparedness planning. Because nothing is more important than the health and safety of your family, they provide only top-of-the-line products. Shelf Reliances line of THRIVE Foods are held to the highest standards. All THRIVE Foods have been developed with everyday menu planning in mind, though they are also the perfect addition to your long-term food storage supply. With their great taste and simple preparation, THRIVE is a trusted source of healthy, delicious meals anytime.The THRIVE 1 Year Food Supply comes complete with 84 #10 (gallon size) cans of grains, fruits, veggies, protein & beans, dairy, and baking essentials. With over 5,000 servings and many foods with a shelf life of up to 25 years, this package will give you variety, nutrition, and peace of mind.
- 12 month food supply for 1 Person
- 6 month food supply for 2 People
- 3 month food supply for 4 People
- Shipment arrives in 14 separate boxes
- Grains and rice have a shelf life of up to 30 years
- Freeze-dried foods have a shelf life of up to 25 years
- Dehydrated foods have a shelf life of up to 15 years
- Simple rehydration instructions, recipes, and helpful tips are included on each can
- 5,011 total servings
- 84 gallon-sized cansThis THRIVE 1 Year 1 Person Food Storage package contains 84 #10 (gallon size) cans. See below for specific package contents.
- 8 Cans of Instant White Rice (48 servings per can)
- 12 Cans of Hard White Winter Wheat (44 servings per can)
- 3 Cans of 6 Grain Pancake Mix (50 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Elbow Macaroni (45 servings per can)
- 6 Cans of Dehydrated Potato Chunks (42 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Sweet Corn (46 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Green Peas (41 servings per can)
- 1 Cans of Dehydrated Chopped Onions (45 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Mushroom Pieces (48 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Broccoli (47 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Organic Apple Slices (48 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Freeze-Dried Strawberries (45 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Blueberries (50 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Freeze-Dried Blackberries (49 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Freeze-Dried Raspberries (48 servings per can)
- 6 Cans of Powdered Milk (43 servings per can)
- 3 Cans of Chocolate Drink Mix (48 servings per can)
Proteins/BeansThe taste and texture of TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein) is consistent with real meat, making it a great addition to vegetarian diets
- 3 Cans of Bacon TVP (47 servings per can)
- 3 Cans of Beef TVP (44 servings per can)
- 3 Cans of Chicken TVP (45 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Taco TVP (42 servings per can)
- 6 Cans of Pinto Beans (49 servings per can)
- 1 Can of Black Beans (49 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of Lima Beans (49 servings per can)
- 3 Cans of Lentils (52 servings per can)
- 6 Cans of Whole Eggs (236 servings per can)
- 2 Cans of White Sugar (46 servings per can)