Like one in twelve Americans, I have diabetes. Like many of you, money is tight right now for our family. So when our new insurance refused to pay for the whole number of test strips I go through in a day, I started shopping around for the best out-of-pocket deal.
A lady on a diabetes forum told me about American Diabetes Wholesale, which sells 200 test strips for $52 and throws in the meter free. (It’s an Infopia Element Autocode if you’re interested.) This is by far the cheapest price I found, though it’s much more than purchasing with insurance.
But medical supplies aren’t the only deals out there. According to the December 2011 issue of ShopSmart magazine, (a sister publication to Consumer Reports), you can save up to 55 percent by shopping at warehouse clubs. The secret, they report, is to know which items are super savings and which aren’t.
Some of the best deals at Sam’s Club and Costco, for example, included batteries, Kleenex, and Cheerios, while toilet paper wasn’t such a good deal. (A BBB blog in February cited Costco as getting the best feedback from consumers on shopping experiences as well.)
Advice from AARP Magazine is to remember that items used daily are the most likely to be sold at a deep discount everywhere, including supermarkets and discount stores. Internet superstores referenced in that article include Alice.com, Soap.com and Drugstore.com.
Remember to Start with Trust by checking business reviews, especially for online businesses, at www.bbb.org.
And, there’s always freecycling. Of course I can’t do that with medical supplies (nor would I want to!) But search in your area to see what kinds of items are being given—rather than thrown—away. Or, you may have something to share.
Do you shop for bulk supplies online, at a warehouse club, or freecycle? Any favorite sites or tips to pass on?