Getting the Best Deals On Diapers
This is a guest post by the Thrifty Couple.
Diapers, diapers, diapers everywhere! At least that is what you think, feel, breathe (ICK!) for the first few years of your precious little blessings lives! We love our little blessings so much, but really hate to shell out the funds for the diapers. They are one of the “necessary, but annoying” expenses of life. No matter how you choose to diaper – it is an expense that faces every parent.
Truth be told, you really can save big in the area of diapers. For over six years now we have been able to consistently score name brand diapers for less than the generic brands. Generics are typically 15 – 20% less money everyday than the name brand diapers based upon our “on-the-field” research. You can easily make up this 15-20% difference (and more!) with coupons and sales on the name brand diapers.
We have put together a diaper size chart that shows each brand of diapers, type of diapers, package size, and the number of diapers in each pack (we will be adding store brand diapers as well). Our assessment led us to name the average price of name brand diapers at 27.5 cents per diaper after factoring in average cost of each package and the number of diapers in it.
Now lets ask the question no one wants to hear the answer to – just how many diapers your baby will use until he/she is potty trained?! Here is a quick calculation to help. Please note the number of diapers per day is actually a bare minimum – imagine how much more the total probably will be!
- 1-3 months old uses around 7 diapers a day for 92 days = 644 diapers
- 4-5 month old uses around 6 diapers a day for 60 days = 360 diapers
- 6-12 month old uses around 5 diapers a day for 182 days = 910 diapers
- 12-24 month old uses around 4 diapers a day for 365 days = 1,460 diapers
- 24 +months (the average girl is potty trained around 2-3 years and average boy around 3-4 years, so we are going to calculate up to 3 years) uses around 3 diapers a day for 365 days = 1,095 diapers
The Grand Total of diapering your child for 3 years: A WHOPPING 4,469 diapers!
How much would this cost with our average – 4,469 x 27.5 cents = $1229 for each child.
Did you know that you can easily get name brand diapers for .20 or less on a regular basis just by using coupons and shopping sales? If you were able to buy diapers for .20 normally – you would save around $335! Many times you can even get them much lower which will yield even greater savings!!
Here’s are some tips on how to save:
#1. Know Your Price Point – Your price point may be different than ours. The price point depends on the size of diapers your child is wearing, the length of time your baby spends in each size, and whether you are brand specific. Your price point is what the cost of the diaper is if you were to go to the store now and buy it. Don’t ever buy diapers at the price point, you can usually easily beat it! You can calculate your price point by dividing the shelf cost by the number of diapers in the package.
#2. Use Diaper Coupons – This is an essential key in saving money on name brand disposable diapers. Most diaper coupons will be for the name brand diapers. We often find that just applying the coupon value brings the cost close in price to generic or store brand diapers. The most common places to find diaper coupons is in newspapers, mailers, diaper company promotions, or even inside of a previously purchased package and printables.
#3. Combine Coupons with Sales – Each week we do provide the matchups for the national stores (such as Walmart, Target, Drugstores and more) to help you figure where to get the best deals each week. Combining those coupons with the sales will help you maximize those savings and bring the price way under that of the generics.
#4. Know When to Stock-Up – If we beat our price point of $0.24 a diaper, then we are doing decent. However, if you can stock up on diapers and beat your price point by a lot – the you are doing very well! A starting stock-up price is about 30% less than your price point. If you get to 30% off or more – it is time to stock-up.
- If you end up hitting 50% off or more from your price point RUN – don’t walk when it comes to stocking up!
- Begin stocking-up when you are expecting. It can be a several month process to have enough stock to keep you going without having to buy diapers “spur-of-the-moment.” With each of our babies, we stocked-up while I was pregnant with them. Overall, this saved us hundreds of dollars during a time that we could use every extra penny that we could save.
#5. Know Which Sizes to Stock-Up - We are always asked which sizes to stock-up on when we don’t know what our baby will need. Our answer – don’t stock up on newborn and size 1. Babies grow very fast and they grow out of these size diapers even faster! Plus, many diaper baby gifts are often in this size already. If you plan to stock-up, only have a handful of size 2 packages on hand. You are probably going to be pretty safe stocking up a lot of size 3 and size 4.
If you stock-up on a size that you end up not using all of, just have some sort of note attached to the package saying where you bought the package from – nearly all stores, including the major national chains, will exchange an identical package of diapers for a different size.
As you can see, this is an expense that you can greatly reduce with just a little effort! Think about your savings over the 3 years with one child…two children….three children etc. You just might find the next family exotic vacation hiding in those diaper packs.
Cassie and Alex are the authors of The Thrifty Couple in which they teach others how to live frugally and stretch your money in every area of life. In addition, they feature a weekly compilation of the Best Diaper Deals for that week showing coupon matchups with the store sales. They should know this subject well as they have four children ages six and under and have been buying and changing diapers without a break!