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Our Favorite Tips for Shopping At Aldi

By Kristen Oliver – on in Life
Whether you like Aldi or not, the supermarket chain doesn't leave anyone indifferent. Here are some secrets about Aldi that will help you make up your mind.

First things first, Aldi is not known to be a fancy grocery store. So what? If you like a purely functional store, where you pay less and get more, the chain is here for you! If you’re not a fan of Aldi, you might think cheap prices mean cheap quality, but know that it’s not the case. The American giant has been working actively to change its reputation to appeal to every customer, even the fancier ones.

No matter what type of customer you are, here are some secrets about Aldi. At the end of your reading, maybe you’ll decide to always shop there… or not.

1 Aldi has a super good return policy

We’re sure you’ve heard about best quality guarantees and best price guarantees before. But Aldi does it all, and better than other stores.

To put it simply, if you don’t like something, you can just bring the remaining portion to the store, and they will either replace it (if it wasn’t fresh, for instance) or reimburse you if you just really disliked what you bought. Crazy, right?

2 They charge to use their carts… for a reason


Have you ever thought how weird it was that Aldi charged a deposit to use their carts? It’s only a quarter, but still, that forces people to return their carts to get their quarter back.

That’s because, at other grocery stores, some customers will leave their carts anywhere in the parking lot. This, in turns, means an employee has to be paid to collect said carts. Well, at Aldi, there is no such thing.

3 Aldi isn’t as cheap as they claim


You think Aldi, you probably think the cheapest grocery store ever, right? While this isn’t technically wrong, it’s also not a perfect representation of reality.

We compared Aldi’s brand name with other grocery stores’, and the difference is not astronomical, contrarily to what Aldi suggests in its marketing campaigns. Aldi is still the cheapest, but only by a small margin.

4 Everything is still in their boxes for a reason


As you enter Aldi, one of the first things you notice are the boxes. So many boxes, boxes everywhere! The place has a similar vibe than Costco. Ever wonder why they keep everything in their boxes?

It’s not because Aldi employees are lazy or lack a sense of vision, no, no! It’s rather because that way, employees spend less time making things look pretty. In return, that means Aldi can stop wasting time and money on this and optimize its productivity.

5 Aldi doesn’t have many staff members

flickr | gwenadryl

Consequently, you might have noticed Aldi is not as staffed as other grocery stores. Ever tried to find someone to ask for their help to find something? You’ll have the impression to play a Where’s Waldo game.

That’s part of why things are so cheap there. Fewer employees mean money saved for Aldi, which can then offer lower prices to you. Also why everything is still in boxes!

6 They don’t do 24/7

flickr | Phil Aliphon

Aldi is all about efficiency and productivity. Having employees 24/7 doesn’t make any sense to them. After all, there are only so few customers in the middle of the night, the store can only lose money if it were to be opened all the time.

That’s why Aldi is usually opened during peak business hours, which means from 9 am to 8 pm, sometimes at 9 pm. Sorry, college students who were willing to work overnight to pay for your tuition, that won’t happen at Aldi.

7 Checking out happens as fast as possible

flickr | Mike Mozart

Checking out at Aldi is quite different than at any other grocery store. After all, you won’t place your items on a long convoyer belt, nothing is bagged and most things can stay in your cart. That’s because it’s more efficient that way!

Aldi is not committed to making things cute or fancy, as mentioned before, but rather to be as efficient and cheap as possible. That’s why checking out is quite different there.

8 The staff is not the happiest

flickr | White Settlement Area Chamber of Commerce

Another thing you might have noticed is that Aldi staff members don’t look overjoyed at work. That has to do with the fact that they need to do more work than usual grocery store employees.

Remember, less staff means money saved (and cheaper prices for you!), but it also means more pressure to be productive. On the other hand, Aldi employees are more paid than other grocery stores’ employees, and they have more benefits too.

9 Aldi won some major awards

flickr | Mike Mozart

Although Aldi stores offer low prices to their consumers, this does not mean that their products are cheap, quite the contrary! This gigantic chain has won several awards over the years, including second place at the International Wine Challenge for its rosés.

Aldi can also boast of winning more than 20 medals at the Grocer Food and Drink Own Label Awards, nothing less. This shows that low prices are not a guarantee of poor quality!

10 Aldi allows you to shop in the comfort of your home

rupixen | Unsplash

We don’t always have the motivation or energy to go out for groceries. Aldi has thought of you and offers you delivery. For the time being, this service is only available in Dallas, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.

Let’s bet that it won’t be long before all consumers in this grocery store can shop from home. After all, it is so convenient for people with busy schedules, such as university students or people with full-time jobs.

11 The bread machines caused them some problems… | Unsplash

Sooner or later, all businesses are taking the technological shift, which is quite normal. Aldi is no exception to the rule, which is why it integrated a bread machine into its stores on November 2010.

The objective was to speed up the process of preparing fresh bread in the store. Unfortunately, this technological innovation displeased the German Bakers’ Confederation, which sued them.

12 Did you know that there were two Aldis?

flickr | Mike Mozart

It is no secret that cigarettes have always been controversial. This product was even the cause of Aldi’s demerger by its founders. They decided at the time to separate the company into North and South.

That’s why Aldi has two different colored logos, one blue and white and one orange and blue. All this was caused by a difference of opinion on the sale of cigarettes. The founders decided to respond to market demands without going against their values.

13 Aldi thinks about your health

flickr | Mike Brocklebank

If some businesses have little qualms about selling products filled with chemical or dubious ingredients, Aldi thinks about your health. Indeed, the private label products do not contain any artificial colors, MSG and hydrogenated oils.

This is very good news! After all, just because we pay for health insurance doesn’t mean we want to get sick because of the products we consume!

14 Aldi has two names!


If you shop in the southern United States, you will notice that Aldi is only named Aldi. However, the situation is a little different in the north. Aldi is named after Trader Joe’s!

You will find the same products you like, but the banner will be a little different. You should also know that Aldi Sud stores are a little chicer than those in the north.

15 Shop at both Aldi and Kohl’s


Do you need products sold at Kohl’s? It will now be possible to obtain them from Aldi. Aldi will be co-located with Kohl’s. This is as much advantageous for Aldi, which lowers the price of its rent, as it is for its consumers.

That’s right! You can shop in both stores in one place, which is very convenient. This is a very clever way to save time when you have several purchases to make.

16 Quality is extremely important for Aldi

Wikimedia Commons

If you doubted that quality is important to Aldi, you can drive that doubt out of your head. The facts are that quality is a priority for this company. The proof: all food products are tested not once, but 30 times before they are put in your shopping basket!

Also, Aldi does another annual test and makes sure to do an additional test when competing products are put on sale. You can, therefore, be assured that everything you put on your plate has been checked by a team of experts.

17 Verzicht is important for Aldi


Have you ever heard of verzicht? Although this word cannot be translated into English, Aldi employees often use it. It is a term that means simplicity as well as the economy.

Aldi employees, therefore, have the principle of keeping things simple by setting goals and getting rid of the futile. Life would be much less stressful if most of us thought so! We would use our energy more intelligently. This is how business can teach us more than we think!