Once upon a time, we would have popped down to the local shops for our daily groceries which consisted of things like a loaf of bread, some cheese and meat, maybe some fresh eggs. These were the basics that people went out for and many elderly people would make this daily shopping trip as it was their only source of conversation with another adult in their day.
Bigger purchases were once in a lifetime things. Purchases like electrical goods and cars and furniture - if these items weren't inherited family heirlooms then they would be purchased at the beginning of a marriage and probably stay for the duration.
All this has changed over the years to the point where there is nothing you cannot buy at a supermarket. Stand in the queue at Tesco's and you will be surrounded by information trying to sell you life insurance, home and contents insurance, mobile phones and even furniture and electrical goods such as TV's and stereos.
In fact, there are even whole supermarkets dedicated to the purchase of cars now. Car supermarkets are springing up everywhere in order to supply the public with cheap cars. Cars used to be a luxury but now they have become an absolute necessity in that nobody can manage without them. Even during this recession, people are still car shopping. In fact, it seems even more necessary that we have our transport to get to our jobs, paying our meagre wages so that we can scrape by.
So, it is established that yes, we do all need our cars and no, we cannot do without them. Even when money is tight we still need to run, maintain and sometimes replace our cars. New cars are probably the domain for the wealthier at the moment so what do the rest of us do? We have the choice of buying private, buying from a car sales forecourt or buying from a car supermarket.
Private buying is cheap but risky. You can never be quite sure that what you are getting is completely above board and even if it is, if something goes wrong you have absolutely no recompense once money has changed hands. You could drive that car to the end of the road, have it fall apart and that's it. No guarantees, no refunds and no car.
Buying from a car sales forecourt brings more security in that you can be pretty sure that the car has had a service and thorough check over to ensure that it has no major faults. You will also get some type of a guarantee that if anything should go wrong in at least three months the sales office will repair or replace. However, the drawback is that they can tend to be a little pricey.
A car supermarket is a relatively new phenomenon in that supermarkets in general are known for being cheaper due to the fact that they can get things in bulk. A car supermarket works the same. A large warehouse type space with less overheads than the average roadside forecourt that is in a more prominent position means that less costs are passed on to the customer.
There will also be a much wider choice of cars in the car supermarket. Some supermarkets will group their cars by make so that if you know what you want you can go straight to it and choose from their selection of models, colours and prices. Other car supermarkets will group their vehicles in price brackets. This narrows down walking time a great deal and shows you everything within your price range that you can afford.
So it would seem that in this time of penny pinching and the pulling in of belts, that if we need a new car, a car supermarket may well be our best option.