Where’s the Cheapest Milk? And the Cheapest Caffeine Fix?

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Some tips to drink in for getting the most of two essential liquids for the least amount of money.

A somewhat painfully dorky video on WalletPop says that generic milk at your local grocery store offers the most vitamin-D bang for your milk dollars. The takeaway is that milk is cheaper at the supermarket than at mini-marts and pharmacies (where you’re basically paying extra for the sake of convenience) and stores like Target (where you’re paying extra because owners know you’ll be there for other reasons and will be tempted to knock out two birds with one store trip).

The video also says that milk at the supermarket is cheaper than at wholesale stores like Costco and BJ’s, and on this account I have to disagree. In my experience, milk (eggs too) are way cheaper at wholesale stores, provided that these products aren’t the only justification for the costs of membership. I’ve always assumed that milk and some other staple items are loss leaders for wholesale clubs. They’re priced really cheaply, and because you can’t stock such items in the pantry, it’s impossible to stock up on them. That means if customers want that cheap milk, they need to enter the store regularly—when, owners hope, the shoppers will be tempted into buying lots of things beyond those staple loss-leading products.

If caffeine is more essential to your body and mind than milk, check out this WiseBread post on the “Cheapest Ways to Get Your Caffeine Fix.” If you’re hardcore about getting some seriously eye-opening stuff and don’t care at all about taste or enjoyment, No Doz is the legal drug of choice. It costs 0.0008¢ per mg of caffeine, followed by Tetley’s Black Tea (0.0011¢), Excedrin Extra Strength (0.0015¢), and Starbucks coffee (0.0056¢). Diet Coke and Tab tie for #8 on the list (0.0104¢ per mg of caffeine).

Worst Stuff to Buy at BJ’s Club and Costco