Poll

Do you shop at Wal Mart?

Yes.
322 (55.5%)
No.
258 (44.5%)

Total Members Voted: 567

Author Topic: do you shop at walmart?  (Read 48873 times)

stoaX

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #150 on: July 06, 2016, 02:47:33 PM »
I voted yes.  There is a store within walking distance for me and the savings catcher app actually does pay off.

MoonShadow

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #151 on: July 06, 2016, 04:55:38 PM »
I voted yes.  There is a store within walking distance for me and the savings catcher app actually does pay off.

And for the tech dummies here, what does that actually do for you?

Metric Mouse

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #152 on: July 07, 2016, 01:19:27 AM »
1.) Due to Wal-Mart's policies, the quality of all goods has gone down -- even those that found elseware. Companies don't make products for each store as a general rule. So while it's true that you can buy the same stuff at Wal-Mart as "everywhere else", the reality is the quality of goods has gone down for all retailers. For example, I used to be able to buy Levi's that would last years and dozens of washings. Levi's today start falling apart after just a few washings and are in general just as crappy as house brands. The difference is in order to stay in business Levi's had to meet Wal-Mart's price point, and in order to do that Levi's had to start cutting quality drastically. I have tools (of all kinds) from Montgomery Ward's that my grandfather purchased 50+ years ago that are still in fine working order despite decades of use. Tools today are lucky to last a couple of years (see also: Harbor Freight). The same has happened across all types of products. It boils down to people being easily seduced by a low ticket price without considering the real _value_ of their purchase.

We've discussed the quality vs. price thing before though.  Tools is a great example, everyone raves about the tools they got handed down from their dad or grandpa, but they don't realize that a cordless drill or a nail gun or a ratchet set built for a 50-100 year life today would cost 10-20 times what they actually do.  I try to buy decent quality stuff, but if I have to buy a new $75 cordless drill every 10 years, that's okay with me, because I don't have the appetite or budget to own several $500+ cordless drills that have a 50+ year life expectancy.  I just don't use my tools that much to justify that expense, but I do use them enough to buy a wide variety of $75-100 tools.  I can buy a $150 chop saw knowing I'll use it 2-3x a year; I can't buy a $1500 chop saw for the same level of usage, I'd just have to go without.

Sounds like the above study suffers from survivorship bias...

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #153 on: July 07, 2016, 05:45:00 AM »
I don't shop at Walmart per sae as I do once a quarter shop at Sams for bulk.  I hate Walmart and always have as its to me a modern day Kmart with groceries and mixed in dollar store crap. Yea if you can get something you really need for the cheap why not save on it but I rarely find it to be at Walmart. My views are not so much on their business practices although I don't agree with a lot of what they do. 

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #154 on: July 07, 2016, 06:12:44 AM »
I buy my coffee there ($2 less per bag than anywhere else) and I get my oil changed there (I earn enough that I don't have to crawl under my car anymore).

stoaX

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #155 on: July 07, 2016, 08:16:55 AM »
I voted yes.  There is a store within walking distance for me and the savings catcher app actually does pay off.

And for the tech dummies here, what does that actually do for you?

Every receipt has a unique code on it.  You enter that into the app / website and if any nearby stores are selling the same thing at a lower price, you get the difference, either in cash or on a Walmart gift card.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #156 on: July 07, 2016, 08:56:19 AM »
I voted yes.  There is a store within walking distance for me and the savings catcher app actually does pay off.

And for the tech dummies here, what does that actually do for you?

Every receipt has a unique code on it.  You enter that into the app / website and if any nearby stores are selling the same thing at a lower price, you get the difference, either in cash or on a Walmart gift card.

Thanks for this.  I am definitely trying this.

MilesTeg

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #157 on: July 07, 2016, 12:28:02 PM »
We've discussed the quality vs. price thing before though.  Tools is a great example, everyone raves about the tools they got handed down from their dad or grandpa, but they don't realize that a cordless drill or a nail gun or a ratchet set built for a 50-100 year life today would cost 10-20 times what they actually do.  I try to buy decent quality stuff, but if I have to buy a new $75 cordless drill every 10 years, that's okay with me, because I don't have the appetite or budget to own several $500+ cordless drills that have a 50+ year life expectancy.  I just don't use my tools that much to justify that expense, but I do use them enough to buy a wide variety of $75-100 tools.  I can buy a $150 chop saw knowing I'll use it 2-3x a year; I can't buy a $1500 chop saw for the same level of usage, I'd just have to go without.

There's certainly a need for varying qualities of goods. Not everyone needs extremely high quality gear. But that's not the issue. The issue is the overall quality of goods has plummeted because, as I said, people fail to recognize the difference between high value and low cost. Everything from food to appliances is increasingly cheaper, but also increasing less value.

Wal-Mart isn't the only problem, but they add to the problem with policies that ensure even companies and buyers that understand and desire value are increasingly less able to find it and instead have to end up buying cheap, disposable crap.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #158 on: July 07, 2016, 12:32:35 PM »
In my one visit to the local Walmart (Sacramento area), I saw two separate, loud arguments in the parking lot, 5 bums out front begging for change, college aged-kids with a liberal agenda asking for my signature while their pants were around their ankle, smelled marijuana upon entering the main area, saw some half-eaten discarded chicken wings that somebody dropped on the floor near the McDonald's that nobody seemed to care about, and saw exactly one employee working the floor at 2 PM on a Saturday. I saw 4 ass cracks, at least a dozen unattended kids, and the $.50 tile job they used throughout the store was caked with cart markings and hair / debris / dirt / etc.

So, yea, I shopped there to get a really cheap (and still used) bed sheet set, and have never gone back

Helvegen

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #159 on: July 07, 2016, 12:39:05 PM »
No. I don't find their prices to be that competitive with alternatives like Winco, Jet.com, Amazon, Costco, etc. There is no real compelling reason to go there for me.

Sibley

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #160 on: July 07, 2016, 12:53:08 PM »
I have problems with Walmart's polices, in particular towards vendors, women, their employees, the communities they'er in, and people with disabilities. I avoid them.

stoaX

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #161 on: July 07, 2016, 01:12:14 PM »
I have problems with Walmart's polices, in particular towards vendors, women, their employees, the communities they'er in, and people with disabilities. I avoid them.

I work for a vendor that sells to Walmart and haven't encountered any policy of theirs that is problematic...they aren't that much different than the other companies we sell to.    What policy do you find objectionable?

Regarding women, do you really know of a policy Walmart has that is anti-woman?  Only 9 of their 32 top officers are women but I'm not sure that is demonstrably worse than other companies.  Target's website shows 18 out of 55 - a little better but not dramatically better. 

And what communities do they operate in that you object to?  To me they are in or around almost all communities, at least in the US. 

Sibley

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #162 on: July 07, 2016, 02:36:33 PM »
I have problems with Walmart's polices, in particular towards vendors, women, their employees, the communities they'er in, and people with disabilities. I avoid them.

I work for a vendor that sells to Walmart and haven't encountered any policy of theirs that is problematic...they aren't that much different than the other companies we sell to.    What policy do you find objectionable?

Regarding women, do you really know of a policy Walmart has that is anti-woman?  Only 9 of their 32 top officers are women but I'm not sure that is demonstrably worse than other companies.  Target's website shows 18 out of 55 - a little better but not dramatically better. 

And what communities do they operate in that you object to?  To me they are in or around almost all communities, at least in the US.

Just a few of the articles. I tried to pick the more reputable names, but didn't have a ton of time to compile.

Re vendors - I object to the pressure to lower costs at all costs.
http://www.wsj.com/articles/wal-mart-ratchets-up-pressure-on-suppliers-to-cut-prices-1427845404

Women - there have been lawsuits in the past alleging discrimination against female employees. I'm not concerned with the top level execs. I'm concerned with the low and mid levels.
https://business-humanrights.org/en/walmart-lawsuit-re-gender-discrimination-in-usa

Employees - I object to the fact that so many employees are on food stamps or other types of aid.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/clareoconnor/2014/04/15/report-walmart-workers-cost-taxpayers-6-2-billion-in-public-assistance/#2a7c7c387cd8
https://www.thenation.com/article/walmart-wages-are-the-main-reason-people-depend-on-food-stamps/

Communities - I've heard of many examples, and have lived though one, where a Walmart came into a community and other businesses closed. No, I don't expect that all small businesses will survive. But big-box stores in general cause major disruption in a local economy, and that isn't always a good thing.
http://journalistsresource.org/studies/government/municipal/impact-big-box-retailers-employment-wages-crime-health

People with disabilities - Another lawsuit... https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/7-1-15d.cfm

Maybe Walmart has improved. Maybe not. But before I'm willing to shop there on a regular basis, I need to see that they're acting consistently ethically over a period of years. Until then, I avoid them.

stoaX

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #163 on: July 07, 2016, 03:09:59 PM »
I have problems with Walmart's polices, in particular towards vendors, women, their employees, the communities they'er in, and people with disabilities. I avoid them.

I work for a vendor that sells to Walmart and haven't encountered any policy of theirs that is problematic...they aren't that much different than the other companies we sell to.    What policy do you find objectionable?

Regarding women, do you really know of a policy Walmart has that is anti-woman?  Only 9 of their 32 top officers are women but I'm not sure that is demonstrably worse than other companies.  Target's website shows 18 out of 55 - a little better but not dramatically better. 

And what communities do they operate in that you object to?  To me they are in or around almost all communities, at least in the US.

Just a few of the articles. I tried to pick the more reputable names, but didn't have a ton of time to compile.

Re vendors - I object to the pressure to lower costs at all costs.
http://www.wsj.com/articles/wal-mart-ratchets-up-pressure-on-suppliers-to-cut-prices-1427845404

Women - there have been lawsuits in the past alleging discrimination against female employees. I'm not concerned with the top level execs. I'm concerned with the low and mid levels.
https://business-humanrights.org/en/walmart-lawsuit-re-gender-discrimination-in-usa

Employees - I object to the fact that so many employees are on food stamps or other types of aid.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/clareoconnor/2014/04/15/report-walmart-workers-cost-taxpayers-6-2-billion-in-public-assistance/#2a7c7c387cd8
https://www.thenation.com/article/walmart-wages-are-the-main-reason-people-depend-on-food-stamps/

Communities - I've heard of many examples, and have lived though one, where a Walmart came into a community and other businesses closed. No, I don't expect that all small businesses will survive. But big-box stores in general cause major disruption in a local economy, and that isn't always a good thing.
http://journalistsresource.org/studies/government/municipal/impact-big-box-retailers-employment-wages-crime-health

People with disabilities - Another lawsuit... https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/7-1-15d.cfm

Maybe Walmart has improved. Maybe not. But before I'm willing to shop there on a regular basis, I need to see that they're acting consistently ethically over a period of years. Until then, I avoid them.


Thanks, I see where you're coming from.  The "communities" part threw me - I thought you didn't like the towns that they were in as opposed to how they changed the economies of the towns....I was about to say "what do you have against Peoria?"  :)

merula

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #164 on: July 07, 2016, 03:23:23 PM »
I'm astounded that it took until Page 4 of this thread to bring up WalMart's rampant gender discrimination.

My objection is to the way they treat their employees in general and women in particular. I prefer not to buy cheap crap in general, but since I do shop at Target, Amazon and Costco, I don't think I have any reason to say "WalMart is bad because they sell cheap crap".

I routinely joke that I shop local when I shop at Target (in MN). But I do think Target treats employees better as a general rule than WalMart. Amazon treats their employees terribly, which I recognize, but they're convenient. So, I guess that's the monetary value of my moral indignity: cheap AND convenient.

I must say that the "it's dirty and full of weirdos" comments seem pretty classist to me.

MoonShadow

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #165 on: July 07, 2016, 03:24:50 PM »
Have either of you actually ever worked there?

stoaX

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #166 on: July 07, 2016, 03:30:13 PM »
I must say that the "it's dirty and full of weirdos" comments seem pretty classist to me.

It does sound "classist"...if this were in the hall of shame and comedy it would get a pass.   Also, I think it depends upon the surrounding community.  My upper middle class neighborhood Walmart is clean and I never see any "weirdos" there (which is kind of disappointing from an entertainment perspective. I'm always hoping to have a true "people of Walmart" moment.)

Sibley

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #167 on: July 07, 2016, 06:01:45 PM »
Have either of you actually ever worked there?

I personally have not. But I did have a friend who worked for Walmart. I was not impressed with how he was treated.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #168 on: July 07, 2016, 06:46:56 PM »
I don't want to shop at WalMart, but being a shift worker means sometimes getting groceries at 3 am on the regular.  No place open EXCEPT WalMart. Sigh.

Cyaphas

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #169 on: July 07, 2016, 06:57:39 PM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals. 

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #170 on: July 07, 2016, 07:02:34 PM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals.

I could poke my eye out with a sharp stick for the experience, but I think I'll pass.


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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #171 on: July 07, 2016, 07:17:17 PM »
You do what you gotta do. I've shopped at Walmart as well, I just don't like to. But I didn't always have an alternative.

Cyaphas

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #172 on: July 07, 2016, 07:18:22 PM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals.

I could poke my eye out with a sharp stick for the experience, but I think I'll pass.

It was interesting. The second time I had a run in with an off duty police officer, armed and in full uniform ordering people to obey Walmart officials. One threatened me over not standing in the door line to get me receipt checked. That was eye opening to say the least. Also, seeing/talking to people there and inquiring about their motives was fun.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #173 on: July 07, 2016, 09:02:05 PM »
I shop at Walmart mostly for non-food items, like toiletries and cleaning products. It is next door to Aldi - where I buy milk, eggs, and some produce. I usually make a shopping stop at the nearby Sam's Club, too.

 I was much better at shopping locally in my Chicago neighborhood 30+ years ago. For our wedding in 1982, I ordered flowers from a florist in my neighborhood, instead of from the big suburban bridal store where I would've gotten more for less money. I had a lot less money then, too.   

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #174 on: July 07, 2016, 09:11:30 PM »
Have either of you actually ever worked there?

I personally have not. But I did have a friend who worked for Walmart. I was not impressed with how he was treated.

Was he sexually discriminated against as well?  That would be an interesting story.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #175 on: July 07, 2016, 09:44:16 PM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals.

I could poke my eye out with a sharp stick for the experience, but I think I'll pass.

It was interesting. The second time I had a run in with an off duty police officer, armed and in full uniform ordering people to obey Walmart officials. One threatened me over not standing in the door line to get me receipt checked. That was eye opening to say the least. Also, seeing/talking to people there and inquiring about their motives was fun.

I'm trying to imagine what a "Walmart Official" looks like. Do they have a large hat and twirl a baton?

fishnfool

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #176 on: July 08, 2016, 12:20:57 AM »
Normally I might shop at Walmart a few times a year but this week while vacationing in Hawaii we've been there 3 times for food and cheap souvenirs.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #177 on: July 08, 2016, 08:05:03 AM »
Yeah I'm going to echo what others are saying and point to their cheaper groceries. I don't personally have a Costco card (I've been planning to get one; just haven't yet), but I always jump on with a friend when I can. Other than that though, Walmart is going to generally be cheaper for groceries.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #178 on: July 08, 2016, 08:33:57 AM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals.

I could poke my eye out with a sharp stick for the experience, but I think I'll pass.

It was interesting. The second time I had a run in with an off duty police officer, armed and in full uniform ordering people to obey Walmart officials. One threatened me over not standing in the door line to get me receipt checked. That was eye opening to say the least. Also, seeing/talking to people there and inquiring about their motives was fun.

I'm trying to imagine what a "Walmart Official" looks like. Do they have a large hat and twirl a baton?

No, you're thinking of a capitalist.



:P

Sibley

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #179 on: July 08, 2016, 08:42:16 AM »
Have either of you actually ever worked there?

I personally have not. But I did have a friend who worked for Walmart. I was not impressed with how he was treated.

Was he sexually discriminated against as well?  That would be an interesting story.

In his case the managers played favorites. Favorite employees got the best/more shifts, more flexibility in scheduling around other commitments, etc. The unlucky others were treated to very impolite language, bullying, unfair evaluations, and yes, I was told of sexual harassment towards some of the female employees. I've moved away from the area, but I did hear about a complaint to whatever government agency. Hopefully that went somewhere, but I'm not in touch with anyone to know.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #180 on: July 08, 2016, 10:28:07 AM »
Given that I've done shift work my entire adult life, it's often the only thing open. Also, they have the cheapest prices on beer, wine and meats. I have gone to some of their black fridays, more for the experience than the deals.

I could poke my eye out with a sharp stick for the experience, but I think I'll pass.

It was interesting. The second time I had a run in with an off duty police officer, armed and in full uniform ordering people to obey Walmart officials. One threatened me over not standing in the door line to get me receipt checked. That was eye opening to say the least. Also, seeing/talking to people there and inquiring about their motives was fun.

I'm trying to imagine what a "Walmart Official" looks like. Do they have a large hat and twirl a baton?

No, you're thinking of a capitalist.



:P

That is not at all what I look like, btw.

kanga1622

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #181 on: July 08, 2016, 02:17:54 PM »
We live within blocks of Walmart (I can see their back parking lot from my driveway) and we do shop there. If we want to shop anywhere other than the grocery store we have to drive 65 miles.

They do have a lot of their pantry goods cheaper than the chain grocery store in town. Their TP, peroxide, and beauty supplies are also loads cheaper. I do have an eco bent on some things and will pay more for those items, but the majority of our consumables come from whatever store provides me the best value.

aaron3719

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #182 on: July 08, 2016, 02:52:56 PM »
You guys familiar with the closings of some 200 Walmart locations?

human

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #183 on: July 08, 2016, 03:13:47 PM »
I still don't understand why people won't shop there because they exploit people, but they will invest in the store and make money off that exploitation.

Helvegen

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #184 on: July 08, 2016, 03:33:20 PM »
I get my batteries and Mobil 1 synthetic oil there... that's about it.

Interesting thing is those are two items that I buy exclusively at Costco.

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #185 on: July 08, 2016, 03:50:31 PM »
[MOD EDIT: Split discussion of Target's transgender bathroom policy here:] http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/target's-transgender-bathroom-policy-(split-from/
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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #186 on: July 09, 2016, 06:53:05 AM »
I live in a rural area, and Wal-Mart, before Amazon was a popular thing, was a huge boon to quality of life.  My area still has one of the original stores that has very minimal groceries.  Yes, due to a Wal-Mart Supercenter opening up, we did lose 2 local grocery stores.  Both were smaller than the size of two school classrooms, and most people only shopped there for specific items they ran out of or needed for a party.  The two regional chains in that town and the surrounding small towns are still going.  IME people choose those b/c they like to support the local chain, can buy most of what they need there, and it's the store closest to their house.  But then when you need something random, you go check the Wal-Mart Supercenter (or order it online if you have time to wait for it to be shipped to you).  Also, it's the only place open after 10 p.m., even on the weekend.  Pretty much everyone under 21 has spent some time in a Wal-Mart after 10 p.m. b/c they didn't have to be home until 11 and didn't have anywhere else to go.  When my mom had 3 teenagers at home, she switched to shopping at Wal-Mart b/c it all-around gave her the best bang for her buck without driving around to different stores for deals.  Which with 3 athletic children, she was usually too busy shuttling us around to practices and games-note it's a rural area so there were serious drive times.  Wal-Mart filled a need, and the Supercenter offered more jobs than the number killed by losing two local stores.

And from the vendor side...Wal-Mart always pushes for lower and lower prices.  But they're only a bit worse than they average retailer for our product.  The main problem is that they are such a large buyer that they realize they have significant bargaining power.  But they are also good about working with us to create a fair marketing plan and adapt to last-minute changes.  It would be nice if they had better produce managers though...

FIREby35

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #187 on: July 09, 2016, 07:46:29 AM »
I just thought I'd chime in case anyone ever gets to page 4 of the thread...haha. My family of five buys all groceries, toiletries, kids stuff and basics from Wal-Mart. When I plan our budget, I consider that if I spend $200 a week at Wal-Mart, I will be spending $10,400 annually. That would include living like a king basically.

Slightly related, when people talk about the cost of living being so high in the United States and not being able to get ahead (blah,blah, blah). I immediately call b.s. because Wal-Mart provides everything and is super cheap. Like I said above, a family of 5 can live like kings for $10,400 annually. That includes big meals on holidays, fresh fruit, steaks, salmon everything. It does not take a lot of money for the truly basic. That 10,400 also includes all my non-work clothes and shoes and the same for my kids (who outgrow everything before I worry about the clothes being low quality).

I have no moral issues with Wal-Mart and I begrudgingly admire their success. Say what you want - they are a smart and wildly successful business started by a single guy 50 years ago. As an entrepreneur and business owner, I think they deserve some major kudos.


Milizard

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #188 on: July 09, 2016, 09:08:54 AM »
Not sure if I ever replied to this thread, but I shop at Meijer instead of Walmart, except maybe 2x a year.  It's better in every way.  I like Target too, but ours does not have produce, etc, plus it's across town, whereas Meijer is very close.

chasesfish

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #189 on: July 09, 2016, 11:52:45 AM »
Its so rare, but there are just a couple of items that never seem to go on sale at the grocery store and Costco doesn't carry.   Good Season's Salad Dressing Mix for one...its just over $1 less at Walmart.  If I pay the $1-$2 more at Safeway, I'll be sick to my stomach for two days

MoonShadow

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #190 on: July 09, 2016, 12:09:22 PM »
I just thought I'd chime in case anyone ever gets to page 4 of the thread...haha. My family of five buys all groceries, toiletries, kids stuff and basics from Wal-Mart. When I plan our budget, I consider that if I spend $200 a week at Wal-Mart, I will be spending $10,400 annually. That would include living like a king basically.


I would very much like to know more about how you only spend $200 per week at Wal-Mart and keep a family of 5 "living like kings".  My wife complains that she spends $300 every time she goes, and we don't even buy steak there.  Granted, we have 5 kids, but while I can see a FIRE'd couple doing well on $10.4K per year budgeted just for WalMart; 3 kids seems like a stretch.  Age of the kids also matters.  The cost of a child starts high, slowly declines till bottoming out about at 9 or so (at which point, they are actually pretty cheap entertainment), then seems to go exponential until they get their own job.  So if your kids are all old enough to no longer need diapers, but under 10, I can see that working out for you.

FIREby35

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #191 on: July 10, 2016, 06:50:10 PM »
I just thought I'd chime in case anyone ever gets to page 4 of the thread...haha. My family of five buys all groceries, toiletries, kids stuff and basics from Wal-Mart. When I plan our budget, I consider that if I spend $200 a week at Wal-Mart, I will be spending $10,400 annually. That would include living like a king basically.


I would very much like to know more about how you only spend $200 per week at Wal-Mart and keep a family of 5 "living like kings".  My wife complains that she spends $300 every time she goes, and we don't even buy steak there.  Granted, we have 5 kids, but while I can see a FIRE'd couple doing well on $10.4K per year budgeted just for WalMart; 3 kids seems like a stretch.  Age of the kids also matters.  The cost of a child starts high, slowly declines till bottoming out about at 9 or so (at which point, they are actually pretty cheap entertainment), then seems to go exponential until they get their own job.  So if your kids are all old enough to no longer need diapers, but under 10, I can see that working out for you.

Our kids are 4.5, 3 and 1.5. Maybe we are special for some reason or it has to do with location (Midwestern city), but that is what we do. We don't eat steak all the time but, every once in a while. Same with salmon, whenever it is on "must sell now" pricing. Anyway, that is what our family does and I actually do feel like we live pretty high on the hog.

Btw, throw in an extra hundred and you are still only talking about $16,000 a year for your family of seven (assuming that was weekly). That's pretty good for that many people!

mizzourah2006

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #192 on: July 11, 2016, 01:50:23 PM »
I live in a rural area, and Wal-Mart, before Amazon was a popular thing, was a huge boon to quality of life.  My area still has one of the original stores that has very minimal groceries.  Yes, due to a Wal-Mart Supercenter opening up, we did lose 2 local grocery stores.  Both were smaller than the size of two school classrooms, and most people only shopped there for specific items they ran out of or needed for a party.  The two regional chains in that town and the surrounding small towns are still going.  IME people choose those b/c they like to support the local chain, can buy most of what they need there, and it's the store closest to their house.  But then when you need something random, you go check the Wal-Mart Supercenter (or order it online if you have time to wait for it to be shipped to you).  Also, it's the only place open after 10 p.m., even on the weekend.  Pretty much everyone under 21 has spent some time in a Wal-Mart after 10 p.m. b/c they didn't have to be home until 11 and didn't have anywhere else to go.  When my mom had 3 teenagers at home, she switched to shopping at Wal-Mart b/c it all-around gave her the best bang for her buck without driving around to different stores for deals.  Which with 3 athletic children, she was usually too busy shuttling us around to practices and games-note it's a rural area so there were serious drive times.  Wal-Mart filled a need, and the Supercenter offered more jobs than the number killed by losing two local stores.

And from the vendor side...Wal-Mart always pushes for lower and lower prices.  But they're only a bit worse than they average retailer for our product.  The main problem is that they are such a large buyer that they realize they have significant bargaining power.  But they are also good about working with us to create a fair marketing plan and adapt to last-minute changes.  It would be nice if they had better produce managers though...

I think this is the positive that many forget. Growing up in small towns in the south/midwest in the late 80s early 90s before the internet before Walmart moved in you had a couple options. 1. Pay whatever the small local grocer was charging or 2. Drive a long way to a larger community with more options. Walmarts came in and didn't charge differing prices based on perceived competition in the area. The prices were always the same and typically ended up being the cheapest due to size and efficiency. It's easy for people from cities like Chicago, San Fran, NYC, etc. to demonize Walmart, but for many of us that spent time in the 80s and 90s in very small towns they were a very welcome sight.

As a teenager/early 20 something working for a unionized grocery store in Saint Louis I can tell you they were no better and paid even less. I started making min. wage ($5.15) at the time and I had to pay $7/week in union dues. I would have gladly chosen Walmart over the company I worked for. Our union dues were the equivalent of over 2 hours of work once you factored in taxes.

MrsPete

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #193 on: July 12, 2016, 07:06:48 AM »
I shop at "the real Walmart" occasionally, but I go to the smaller Walmart Express more often.  It's small, sized like a regular grocery store, so it's easy to get in and out quickly.  The prices are roughly the same as Aldi's, but the selection is different.  Every store has its own strength, and Walmart's is simple, old-fashioned foods; for example, dried beans, flour, etc. 

I agree that Walmart (or Target) is attractive to people who want/need to do all their shopping in one place.  My grandmother loved Walmart because she only had to get in/out of the car once, yet she could buy her groceries plus something from home goods and whatever else.  The same could be said for parents with small children and people who don't have their own cars. 

What's the difference between Walmart and Target?  Mostly staging.  Walmart just slaps stuff on the shelf and says, "Here, come buy it", whereas Target clearly has a team of marketers who put together new and trendy decorations for the front of the store -- and since they use the same stuff in every store, it's a bargain.  They also are more cued into trendy colors and styles, though their quality is no better than Walmart's. 

Finally, I agree with the poster who says, "Yeah, some people do need that cheap stuff."  Yeah, when I was young and poor, I had trouble affording Walmart stuff.  At that point in my life, the choices were this or nothing, so I was glad to have their cheap towels, etc.  I'm glad not to be in that situation any longer.



Cranky

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #194 on: July 12, 2016, 07:53:19 AM »
People always complain that WalMart is messy looking and there's too much stuff in the aisles, but a few years ago WalMart experimented with having a less cluttered look, and actual shoppers complained that they couldn't find stuff they wanted. And face it - WalMart is the place you go to buy stuff. What people say they want, and what they actually do want, are not always the same thing.

Warlord1986

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #195 on: July 12, 2016, 08:06:24 AM »
No. I save money and live better by not shopping at Walmart. None of their foreign made crap darkens my door, I don't put more of my money in the Walton's bank account, and their fruits and vegetables are often rotten anyway. No, thank you. I'll stick to Publix and Aldi's, both of which close on Thanksgiving and have fresh food.

MrMoogle

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #196 on: July 12, 2016, 10:31:05 AM »
I shop there for meats.  Normally I walk to Target for groceries, but Walmart's meats are about 1/2 to 1/3 the price of Targets.  Other produce are only slightly higher at Target.  So every month or two I go pick up a bunch of chicken and some beef.

MoonShadow

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #197 on: July 12, 2016, 07:05:38 PM »


I agree that Walmart (or Target) is attractive to people who want/need to do all their shopping in one place.  My grandmother loved Walmart because she only had to get in/out of the car once, yet she could buy her groceries plus something from home goods and whatever else.  The same could be said for parents with small children and people who don't have their own cars. 


Also, the visually impaired.  My wife's family are almost all blind.  As the first sighted child, her dad literally bought her a new car, so she could drive him around town.  Prior to that, trips to the store involved a bus ride to the store then a cab ride home.  Single people would do this in pairs, in order to save on the cab fare.  The ability to do all your shopping in a single trip, even if that involved several carts and some rather creative packing of a taxi cab, was a huge boon.  Today, I've discovered that my wife's nephews now use Uber, but the process is the same.

Jrr85

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #198 on: July 14, 2016, 03:08:02 PM »
I still don't understand why people won't shop there because they exploit people, but they will invest in the store and make money off that exploitation.

I don't understand it because Walmart still pays pretty good wages for retail.  And they still offer opportunity to people that weren't fortunate enough to go to college.  It may have changed, but I had a friend with a father that worked there and he said that there was very little credentialism at the company.  If there was a non-college educated worker that was reliable and a good worker and showed some aptitude on their internal training, they would get the opportunity to move up the chain.  This was over a decade ago, so not sure that still holds true, but where I grew up, it was probably one of the best opportunities available for people that came from a background where going to college was unlikely.  There were a few companies that were probably better to work for if you had a college degree, but at those companies, there was a pretty low level of management where you realistically just weren't going to get without a piece of paper on your wall.   

Aunt Petunia

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Re: do you shop at walmart?
« Reply #199 on: October 05, 2019, 04:39:24 AM »
In my area Walmart is cheaper than Aldi or even Costco for certain staples like flour, rice, dried beans, frozen veggies, etc. They are also a good source of FAR items with rebate apps, and have the best coupon policy. Agree that the produce is terrible though.

We still go to Aldi for produce, spices, and some meat, and Costco for dairy products, coffee and other things.