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Which supermarket was cheapest during November 2016?

Asda comes out on top once again

Woman with shopping list and trolley in supermarket

Our basket cost over £7 less at Asda than at the next-cheapest supermarket

Asda was the cheapest supermarket for our basket of branded products in November – the eighth month in a row that it’s come out on top.

We compared a basket of 77 popular branded items at six major supermarkets. The basket cost £146.45 at Asda, compared to £153.68 at the next-cheapest supermarket, and £164.65 at the most expensive.

Want to know how your favourite supermarket fared in our comparison? Take a look at our guide to supermarket prices, which has the full results from November and the last three years.

Supermarkets in the news in November

Shoppers in London and Hertfordshire will now be able to order a full grocery shop on Amazon for delivery within an hour. These shoppers can opt to have their order picked at a local Morrisons store by the supermarket’s staff – Morrisons already supplies products to Amazon’s Fresh delivery service. The shopping will then be delivered by Amazon, either within one hour for £6.99 or in a two-hour slot for free. 

An investigation by the BBC’s Watchdog programme found that Asda had been using dirty crates for its home delivery service. Asda apologised and said that it had ordered a deep cleaning of every home shopping crate and van.

How we compare supermarket prices

We start with a list of more than 100 popular products each month, which are likely to be sold in all six supermarkets we cover (Asda, Morrisons, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose). The products range from McVitie’s biscuits to Aquafresh toothpaste to Tetley tea bags.

Using data from the independent shopping website MySupermarket, we calculate the average price (including discounts, but not multibuys) for each item across a whole month. We add those average prices up to get the cost of the basket.

If a product hasn’t been sold in one of the six supermarkets during the month, then it’s removed from that month’s basket altogether to ensure a fair comparison.

Supermarket price-comparison schemes

Many supermarkets have a price-matching scheme, where they compare their prices against other supermarkets. They will often give you a voucher for the difference if your shopping would have been cheaper elsewhere. As the schemes vary, we’ve rounded up the differences below. 

Tesco’s price-comparison scheme now deducts money at the till or as you pay the bill online, so should charge the same as Asda for our basket. However, you need to buy at least 10 items to qualify for the scheme. 

Click the links to find out how each supermarket compared in our customer survey, and to find out which Best Buy products you can buy from each. 

  • Asda checks prices against Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, and Waitrose. Asda will give you a voucher for the difference if it isn’t 10% cheaper.
  • Morrisons no longer has a price-match scheme.
  • Ocado price matches against Tesco and will give you a voucher for the difference.
  • Sainsbury’s no longer has a price-match scheme. 
  • Tesco checks prices on branded products against Asda, Morrisons, and Sainsbury’s. Tesco will deduct the difference off the price of your shop before you pay.
  • Waitrose price matches Tesco on branded items. There aren’t any vouchers – these are the prices it sells the items for.

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