No more than a decade ago I remember my father being a complete irritant to us kids by singing the praises of the then unfamiliar superstore chain Lidl.   As a struggling writer on a very small budget and a large family to support, he now explains that in those days it was a real ‘find’ as he was able to stock up on tins of food, cleaning products and bottled water and do a ‘man shop’ that my mother refused to do.

Nowadays it’s a different story, and the rich and famous are seen in domains such as Lidl and Aldi, glamorous wealthy ladies who just a few years ago would only be seen in the more upmarket outlets, and who are putting their image to one side and going for a massive saving on their weekly shop.

Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and even Asda are now having to rethink their strategy and their prices in the race to sustain their regular customer, as everybody is getting supermarket savvy whatever their income or budget.

In my quest to find out why Lidl was becoming so popular I have been doing my own research, and with careful selection, you can make a big saving on their meat and fish, with some great offers on kids clothes and even cooking items, not to mention their champagne.   I would strongly advise you to stock up on the latter for Christmas even if you buy one bottle a week.

Like most people, I always imagined that their low prices were due to their dubious imports of fish and meat, which is why their recent television campaign has been so clever – putting to rest the public’s assumption that their fish was caught ‘in a ditch’ or their meat from some far off slaughter house. On the contrary, and I don’t know how they manage to keep their prices so low, but they compare favourably with any other competitor including the W chain.

But for those of you who prefer to ‘cross shop’ then make the most of the best offers in all the superstores and take a few minutes to plan by checking out the best offers as they do change by the week in all of them.

Ignore the ‘special offers at the end of the lines, as these are not always the best bargains, but stroll down each isle and watch out for their special offers as you go.

There are for instance some fabulous clothes for Christmas in Asda with their George brand and watch out in Waitrose as they add to their Essentials range with competitive prices.

Put your pride to one side and always check the last minute offers in all of the supermarkets, it only means that you have to use them up sooner rather than later, and good if you are entertaining or feeding a family that day with the last minute offers. I picked up some great desserts in Tesco last week at a third of the original price.

Hope I have helped guide you and saved you a bit of cash, that you can now spend on yourself. After all. every lidl bit helps. Sorry, couldn’t resist that one!

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