- Many people use meal kits to save time on food prep.
- You may want to consider HelloFresh, but don't expect it to slash your grocery bills.
Find out if the meal kit service is worth paying for.
Many of us maintain hectic, busy schedules that leave us little time for things like grocery shopping and meal-planning. That's where services like HelloFresh come in handy.
HelloFresh is a meal delivery service that delivers kits you prepare in your kitchen every week. To be clear, it's not a heat-and-eat sort of deal -- you still have to put different ingredients together to make your meals come together. But you'll be given everything you need to whip up meals in one convenient package, along with step-by-step instructions on how to get the job done.
HelloFresh could definitely be a big time-saver. But is it worth the cost? Here's what you need to know.
Digging into the numbers
Normally, HelloFresh starts at $7.99 per serving. It's possible to use a promo code to get a discount on your first batch of meals, knocking your price down to $3.99 per serving. But don't expect to pay that $3.99 for long.
The upside of HelloFresh is that you're not locked into a contract, and you can skip a week (or more) when you so choose. The service also lets you customize your meals to accommodate dietary restrictions. For example, if you don't eat meat, HelloFresh can still be a viable solution for you.
But let's talk about whether HelloFresh will actually save you money. For the most part, the answer is no.
Sure, with a coupon code knocking your cost down to $3.99 per serving, you may reap some savings initially compared to what you'd spend at the grocery store. But at the regular price point, you won't see your grocery spending shrink.
That said, getting meals from HelloFresh can be far cheaper than dining at restaurants and ordering a lot of delivery and takeout. And, it can be a lot healthier.
Should you use HelloFresh?
HelloFresh won't necessarily be easy on your wallet, and you may run up a hefty credit card tab using the service instead of doing all of your food shopping at the supermarket. But if you don't have a lot of time to shop, and you frequently fall back on delivery and takeout because of that, then HelloFresh may be a better alternative.
Ultimately, if you're comfortable in the kitchen and aren't necessarily strapped for time, then there's little value in paying for HelloFresh, especially beyond the initial promotion you might get. Some people say that it helps them mix things up and discover new meal ideas, but you can do the same thing for free by exploring food blogs yourself.
One thing to consider, though, is that if you're self-employed, it may be easier to justify the cost of HelloFresh. The reason? You might spend more on the service than you would by buying groceries. But if using HelloFresh frees up a few hours of your time each week, you might earn enough working those additional hours to cover that extra cost and still come out ahead financially.
You may decide it's worth spending the money on HelloFresh for the convenience factor alone. There's nothing wrong with that if it fits into your budget.
Many of us routinely pay for conveniences, so HelloFresh doesn't have to be an exception. But you shouldn't use HelloFresh with the expectation that doing so will slash your grocery bills, because that most likely isn't going to happen.
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