Aldi’s Huge Expansion Plan Could Change the Grocery Game in Your Area

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New aldi stores
Chris O'Meara/AP Photo

An Aldi takeover is in the works.

Last month, CEO Jason Hart told Reuters in an exclusive interview about the brand’s plans to remodel 1,300 stores and open 400 new locations in the U.S.

This week, a press release confirmed those plans.

Aldi will spend $3.4 billion to bring its number of stores to a whopping 2,500 nationwide by the end of 2022. Once it does so, it’ll be the third largest grocery chain in the nation, according to the release.

The new locations are planned for Florida, Texas and both coasts. It’s a boon for job seekers, as the chain expects to hire 25,000 additional employees.

Supermarket Sweep, 2017 Edition

We don’t yet know exactly where Aldi will place its new stores.

If I were to speculate, I’d guess most of the new locations will be within spitting distance of a Walmart. The latter has been struggling to retain customers in the wake of Aldi’s steady U.S. expansion and recently cut prices on products at 1,200 stores to try to lure those shoppers back.

Meanwhile, another grocery name out of Europe is ramping up its American version. Lidl opened 20 locations across the South this spring and has 80 more planned over the next year.

Several major grocery chains like Publix and Kroger have started developing meal kits in an effort to keep customers who don’t have the time or interest in preparing home menus.

And then there’s Amazon. Amazon just doesn’t quit.

How to Prepare Yourself for the New Aldi Stores in Your City

If you’ve never shopped at Aldi, it’s best to read up before you visit. The emphasis on low prices means frills are a no-go.

The store charges you if you don’t bring your own grocery bags or use the empty boxes available. Those boxes? They’re from stocked items — instead of unpacking items onto the shelves, Aldi stacks up the boxes in which the products arrived.

So get ready to bag or box your own goodies. And do it quickly, because the pros waiting in line behind you aren’t going to go easy on you during your first visit. Not that it’s ever happened to me.

But a lack of frills doesn’t mean a lack of quality, if Aldi’s fans are any indication. The store has a double guarantee on all its exclusive products, meaning Aldi will both replace the product and refund your money if you aren’t satisfied. Its Millville brand is reportedly made by the nation’s leading food manufacturers (the big names you pay way more for at other stores).

Check out our other tips for shopping and saving at Aldi, then look for the “coming soon” signs to pop up in your area.

Lisa Rowan is a writer and producer at The Penny Hoarder