discounts http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4405/all en-US 4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_clothes_000084963291.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to spot a fake sale and keep more money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Retailers these days have gotten very good at tricking you into thinking you're getting a great deal, even when you aren't. Whether it's through words they use to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-stop-your-mindless-spending" target="_blank">trick your brain</a> into thinking an item is a screaming deal, or the promotional techniques they employ to get you to open your wallets, it's important to be on the lookout. Here are some of the most used techniques along with some ways to fight back.</p> <h2>1. Words, Words, Everywhere Words</h2> <p>As consumers, it's important to realize that retailers hire psychologists to choose the words they place on signs in their stores. It could be as simple as &quot;Limited Time Offer&quot; or &quot;Expiring Soon&quot; to the more subtle &quot;New Low Price.&quot; All of these words and phrases are chosen to trick your brain into opening your wallet. In many cases, the price of a &quot;Limited Time Offer&quot; is the same price the item has been for months, and the &quot;New Low Price&quot; is simply the introductory price of a product.</p> <p>To avoid this trick, totally ignore the words you see in stores and instead let the numbers tell the story. By numbers, I mean the actual price of the item. If it's a store you shop at regularly, you'll probably be able to easily tell if the price is actually a sale price. But for the majority of us, we have no idea if the price is a good deal. Use a smartphone app like&nbsp;<a href="http://shopsavvy.com/">ShopSavvy</a> to quickly scan the item's barcode and check the price at online stores as well as brick and mortar stores in your local area. By doing a quick price check, you let the facts steer your buying decision and not the words retailers use to separate you from your hard-earned money.</p> <h2>2. Avoid &quot;Open the Wallet&quot; Pricing</h2> <p>The next time you walk into a big-box retailer, take a second to notice the elaborate displays found near the front of the store. Often the products are highly-discounted and very appealing to the eye and tend to draw shoppers in. These displays are perfect examples of &quot;Open the Wallet&quot; pricing, which is a trick to get shoppers excited about saving money in the hopes they buy a bunch stuff they don't need and had no intention of buying in the first place. After all, since you saved a bunch of money on these strategically priced items, you now have more money to spend on other stuff, right? Wrong.</p> <p>Walmart, Target, Old Navy, and Macy's are a few of the retailers famous for employing this strategy. By being aware of what stores are trying to do, you can shop with blinders on and walk past these &quot;Open the Wallet&quot; displays and stay focused on the reason you walked into the store in the first place.</p> <h2>3. When a Coupon Won't Save You Money</h2> <p>Often retailers will raise the price of their products to full-retail right before releasing a coupon to the general public. This trick essentially makes the coupon worthless. For example, a storewide sale they had last weekend will often give you the same savings as using the coupon when prices are high. Eddie Bauer, Ann Taylor, Gap, American Eagle, and Lands' End are a few of the more popular retailers known to employ this trick. The one thing to avoid is failing to use a coupon when prices are at regular-price, as you'll end up spending way more than you should.</p> <p>Another aspect of this trick is &quot;High-Low&quot; pricing, which is when retailers have relatively high everyday prices, then regularly lower their prices via coupons and sales events. In actuality, they know they'll sell very little at full-retail, and at the same time, they give consumers the perception that they're scoring a great deal by issuing coupons and limited time discounts. So in essence, the sale price becomes the everyday price and shoppers need to keep this in mind when price comparing. JCPenney, Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, and Kohl's are some of the stores who use this trick to make you think you're saving money.</p> <h2>4. Be Aware of Decoy Pricing Schemes</h2> <p>Have you ever shopped for running shoes and noticed the uber expensive models that stores often place in the front displays? I'm talking about running shoes in the $125 to $175 range. This is not by accident, as these expensive models make the more reasonably-priced athletic shoes look like a real bargain. This is known as &quot;decoy pricing&quot; and is also done at jewelry stores, with Apple products on display in the Apple Store, and HDTVs at Best Buy.</p> <p>For example, the $3,000 4K HDTV in the front display at Best Buy makes the $750 no-frills, but still high-quality, Samsung model look like a steal. In actuality, Best Buy knows they won't sell many of the $3,000 models, and they're cool with it because it makes all the other models look like a better deal. After all, the more reasonably-priced models are their bread-and-butter and what they depend on selling in droves to stay profitable. By knowing what retailers are trying to do, you can focus solely on the products in your price range and find the best value that fits your budget. In other words, ignore the bright and shiny objects that you can't afford and focus only on what you can.</p> <p><em>How do you avoid falling for the tricks stores use to separate you from your money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon">6 Ways to Score a Last-Minute Coupon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break">4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bad deals coupons decoy pricing discounts fake sales retail tricks Thu, 21 Apr 2016 09:30:28 +0000 Kyle James 1691581 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways to Score a Last-Minute Coupon http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shop_owner_000048396518.jpg" alt="Woman finding ways to score a last-minute coupon" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As any frugal shopper can attest, there's nothing worse than paying full-price when all your attempts to find a coupon come up empty. Fortunately, with a little outside-the-box thinking, there is almost always a way to score an online or in-store coupon and save significant money in the process. Here are six such ways that'll keep you from paying full-price on darn near anything. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break?ref=seealso">4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break</a>)</p> <h2>1. Use Live Chat and Ask</h2> <p>If you're shopping online and all of your attempts to find a coupon code for a particular retailer fail, try starting a live chat session and ask for one. Most large retail websites these days employ live chat operators that are standing by to help you with your purchase or answer any questions you might have. They also often have a list of coupon codes at their disposal that they can hand out at their discretion.</p> <p>Politely start a conversation, chat them up a little bit, then ask if they might have a coupon code for 20% off or perhaps free shipping. Make this a healthy frugal habit and you can save significant money over the course of a year. Retailers where this really works includes Lands' End, Home Depot, Old Navy, Office Depot, Shutterfly, and LL Bean.</p> <h2>2. Use a Competitor's Coupon</h2> <p>If you're shopping at Michaels and you can't find a printable in-store coupon, just look for a JoAnn, AC Moore, or Hobby Lobby coupon instead as they'll happily accept competitor coupons. Other popular stores that will accept competitor coupons include Home Depot, Lowe's, Menards, JoAnn, Office Depot, Sports Authority, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Walmart.</p> <p>When shopping in-store, the best way to gain quick access to these coupons is to arm your smartphone with a free coupon app from RetailMeNot or CouponSherpa. Then simply do a quick search for competitor coupons and save some easy money.</p> <h2>3. Abandon Your Virtual Cart</h2> <p>This tip is by far the most passive aggressive way to score an online coupon when you seem destined to pay full-price. It also takes a little patience, so it might not work if you need the item tomorrow. Many online retailers will try to entice you back by sending you a coupon via email if you leave, or abandon, items in your virtual shopping cart.</p> <p>For this to work you need to have an account with the retailer so they have your email address in their system. Then simply add the item(s) you want to buy to your online cart, then logout and wait for your coupon. If you're going to get a coupon to come back and finish your purchase, you'll typically get it within 24 hours. Retailers that have been known to send out coupons this way include Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, JCPenney, Best Buy, Williams-Sonoma, Office Max, and Land of Nod.</p> <h2>4. The Stores That Hand Them Out</h2> <p>Are you aware that some store employees are armed with coupons that they'll happily scan for you when checking out at the register? For example, if you forget to bring in your &quot;20% off any 1 item&quot; coupon at Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, just politely explain the situation to the checkout employee, and more often than not, they'll pull one out from behind the counter and scan it for you.</p> <p>A good way to judge whether the store you're shopping at might have a coupon ready to hand out is the frequency of their coupon offerings. If they always seem to have a coupon except for the day you happen to be shopping, there's a great chance an employee can get you one if you ask. Besides Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, stores where you should definitely ask include Kohl's, Harbor Freight, Macy's, and Michaels.</p> <h2>5. Hit Up Facebook for a Coupon</h2> <p>Another great way to find a coupon for a specific retailer is to hit up their Facebook page. All you have to do is send them a message politely asking for a coupon for some extra savings. Most large retailers have employees monitoring their Facebook presence and responding quickly to message requests. By quickly, I mean often within 30 minutes. You can either search Facebook directly to find the stores page or look for the Facebook icon on the retailer's homepage and click directly on it.</p> <h2>6. Tweet for a Coupon</h2> <p>Twitter is another excellent way to communicate directly with a retailer in an attempt to score a coupon. This is due to the fact that most Twitter feeds are constantly being monitored and a quick response is almost guaranteed. From the specific retailer's Twitter page, click on &quot;Message&quot; and type your coupon request. Be sure your request is polite and conversational and not demanding in tone.</p> <p>Your chances of success rise substantially if you've had a previous bad customer service experience with the retailer. Briefly explain what happened in your Twitter message and often times the retailer will give you a coupon to make up for your bad experience.</p> <p><em>How do you avoid paying full-price when a discount seems completely unavailable?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break">4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping coupons customer service discounts expired Facebook live chat twitter Wed, 13 Apr 2016 09:30:30 +0000 Kyle James 1687437 at http://www.wisebread.com Negotiate Better Prices on These 6 Grocery Store Buys http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-better-prices-on-these-6-grocery-store-buys <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/negotiate-better-prices-on-these-6-grocery-store-buys" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_food_shopping_000016896623.jpg" alt="Woman negotiating prices on grocery store buys" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The idea of negotiating a lower price at the grocery store is often something shoppers shy away from. Whether it's the fear of rejection or embarrassment, negotiating is rarely used as a way to save money. Well, I'm here to tell you that if you know what grocery items to look for, and have the proper negotiating strategy in place, it can be successfully done. Here are some items worth negotiating, along with tips to make it happen.</p> <h2>1. Deli and Butcher Counter</h2> <p>Many shoppers are unaware that there exists great opportunities to negotiate a lower price at the deli and butcher counter. Always look for hams and roasts that are less than two pounds in size. These have typically been sliced from larger cuts and the remaining amount is often too small to prep for lunch meat, meaning they are hard to sell by themselves. So, politely ask the employee behind the counter if you can take it off their hands for a slight discount. I typically ask for 20% off and end up with a 10%&ndash;15% discount the majority of the time.</p> <h2>2. Fruits and Veggies</h2> <p>The single best way to negotiate a deal on fruit and veggies at the grocery store is to look for slightly damaged items and ask for a small discount. Maybe a bunch of bananas is slightly bruised, but it won't affect your fruit smoothie. Or maybe a head of lettuce is slightly wilted on the outside, but the leaves underneath are just fine. Politely start a conversation with the employee in the produce department, point out the defect, and ask for a slight discount. This always works better if you're buying a large quantity, as the employee will want to keep you happy.</p> <p>Also, if you do the majority of your shopping at a single grocery store, try to build a relationship with the produce employees. They'll be able to tip you off to great deals, the freshest items, and upcoming sales &mdash; and be more willing to lower the price for you, too. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-off-season-foods-that-are-destroying-your-grocery-budget">5 Off-Season Foods That Are Destroying Your Grocery Budget</a>)</p> <h2>3. Wrongly Priced Items</h2> <p>Almost every grocery store has a section dedicated to clearance or marked-down items placed for a quick sale. Without fail, there are always items placed in this section that appear to still be marked at full price. This happened to me recently when I found some expensive K-Cups for my Keurig brewer on the clearance rack that were not marked down. On a hunch, I asked a nearby employee if they were actually on sale. He did a quick price scan and sure enough, they were incorrectly priced at full retail. He did a price adjustment for me, and I walked out of the store with a sweet deal. Now, I make it a habit to always check the clearance rack when I visit the grocery store.</p> <h2>4. Bakery Items</h2> <p>A great way to save money on cupcakes, cakes, and pastries is to look for items that are a day or two from the &quot;sell by&quot; date. Once you find these items, simply ask the employee if they'll be marked down soon, since they're nearing expiration. Instead of spending the time marking them down, often the employee will happily let them go to you <em>now</em> at a discount. If the employee doesn't volunteer an immediate discount, ask about the possibility of you taking them off their hands for 25% off. Keep in mind that, in the end, you're actually doing them a favor as it takes time to mark down these items and they run the risk of having to remove them from the store if unsold.</p> <h2>5. Meats</h2> <p>The biggest key to saving money is to know what day and time your grocery store marks down their meats that are nearing their &quot;sell by&quot; date. Most do it on weekdays before 10 a.m., but just ask and they'll happily tell you. Once you know, shop right after their markdowns and then ask for a quantity discount when buying multiple cuts. Remember, it's only a &quot;sell by&quot; date and not an expiration date. Plus, the cuts are still great for freezing and using later at a big discount.</p> <p>The key to making this work is to politely ask for a discount when buying at least five or more items that are nearing their &quot;sell by&quot; date. Most butcher counters are happy to clear out these items at an extra 10%&ndash;15% off, as they want to get rid of them quickly before they take a loss on them.</p> <h2>6. Cases of Wine</h2> <p>My local grocery store will happily sell a case of wine, typically 12 bottles, for a discount. While I'm not a wine drinker, I've seen several customers get discounts in the 10%&ndash;15% off range by purchasing in bulk. The key to your success is to look for wine that may be overstocked, or on sale, as those are the vintages the store probably wants to clear out to make room for new inventory. If your grocery store denies a discount, check specialty stores like BevMo!, Total Wines, or a local beverage retailer. They'll usually happily offer you a case discount.</p> <p>The keys to negotiating at the grocery store are always to be polite and have a friendly conversation rather than be demanding. Throw in a legitimate reason to ask for that discount, and you stand a great chance of saving money on your next trip.</p> <p><em>How do you save money at the grocery store? Have you ever successfully negotiated a lower price?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-better-prices-on-these-6-grocery-store-buys">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-off-season-foods-that-are-destroying-your-grocery-budget">5 Off-Season Foods That Are Destroying Your Grocery Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-big-at-these-4-discount-supermarkets">Save Big at These 4 Discount Supermarkets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-9-easiest-food-budget-wins">The 9 Easiest Food Budget Wins</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know">10 Grocery Store Secrets Only the Pros Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Shopping bargaining discounts finding deals food costs groceries grocery store negotiating Thu, 03 Mar 2016 10:30:31 +0000 Kyle James 1665769 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/clipping_coupons_000046465166.jpg" alt="Stores letting you break common coupon rules" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Coupons are awesome tools for saving money when they work exactly as advertised. But what happens when the coupon burning a hole in your pocket turns out to be expired, chock full of exclusions, or beset with a quantity discount? Fortunately, if you know the couponing rules you can bend, you still have excellent opportunities to save money with coupons that many uninformed shoppers would deem worthless. Here is what you need to know to make it happen. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a>)</p> <h2>1. Coupon Expiration Dates</h2> <p>There is nothing more frustrating than pulling out your coupon when checking out, only to notice it expired last week. But, depending on the store you're in, many will still happily accept that expired coupon. Also, just because your favorite store might not be mentioned here, always try to use the expired coupon &mdash; many stores will have a coupon behind the counter that you can use. After all, you have nothing to lose and a few bucks (or maybe much more) to gain.</p> <h3>Bed Bath &amp; Beyond</h3> <p>Did you know that your 20% off any one item coupon at Bed Bath &amp; Beyond will often still work when expired? So don't throw them away when you find an old one buried in your desk drawer. Worst case scenario, the BBB employee will pull out a non-expired version of the same coupon from behind the counter and scan it for you.</p> <h3>Burger King</h3> <p>Most Burger King locations will still accept your expired coupon. As a matter of fact, because the unofficial policy is to take all coupons, many employees won't even glance at the expiration date when giving you your discount.</p> <h3>Buy Buy Baby</h3> <p>Don't throw away your expired Buy Buy Baby coupons, because they'll typically still accept them. Can't find a coupon? Just use your Bed Bath &amp; Beyond coupon, as they've been known to accept those, too.</p> <h3>Dick's Sporting Goods</h3> <p>I recently discovered that Dick's will often honor expired coupons. If they don't accept it, the cashier usually has a very similar non-expired coupon they can scan for you.</p> <h3>Kohl's</h3> <p>While Kohl's might not take an expired coupon <em>per se</em>, they will indeed take your expired Kohl's cash. So don't throw it away!</p> <h3>Petco</h3> <p>If you have an expired Petco branded coupon, be sure to not discard it. Petco stores will typically still take their own coupons &mdash; but not expired manufacturer coupons.</p> <h2>2. Quantity Limit Workaround</h2> <p>Many in-store grocery coupons come with a stingy quantity limit of a single item. This can really curb your savings if you're trying to stock up on something when the price is right. An obvious workaround is to politely ask the cashier to break up your purchase into separate transactions so you can use the coupon on each. However, some stores also limit the coupon to one use per visit &mdash; which would shoot that workaround in the foot.</p> <p>A better way to get around the quantity limit is to learn how to stack coupons to your advantage. This is when you use a store-issued coupon in conjunction with a manufacturer coupon, and in essence, double your savings. Then if you want to stock up and buy more than a single item, you can use the store-issued coupon on one item, and the manufacturer coupon on another. By doing it this way, you still get similar savings and avoid the dirty looks. Popular retailers that let you do this include Whole Foods, Publix, CVS, Safeway, Rite Aid, Target, and Walgreens.</p> <h2>3. Grace Period on Manufacturer Coupons</h2> <p>The couponing world has seen some pretty cool technological advances in recent years. For example, did you know that many manufacturer coupons now have data encrypted into them that can often extend their expiration dates via a grace period? So a coupon that has a printed expiration of 2/29 might not actually expire until 3/15, or later. The most obvious way to determine this &quot;grace period&quot; is to have the cashier scan them individually and see if they're accepted or rejected. To avoid holding up the line and wasting a bunch of your time, instead consider downloading an app like&nbsp;<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.dustywallet.qseer">QSeer Coupon Reader</a> so you can scan the coupon at home and see if it has a grace period attached to it.</p> <h2>4. Coupon Exclusions and Restrictions</h2> <p>Have you ever tried to use a retailer's coupon only to discover the brand you're trying to purchase is excluded from the coupon? These coupon exclusions often come directly from the brand's headquarters, as they don't want to be considered a &quot;discount&quot; brand by consumers.</p> <p>The good news is that many retailers will often overlook certain brand exclusion and give you the coupon discount anyways, or offer another solution to help you score a deal. Stores where I have had the cashier give me the discount anyways includes Dick's Sporting Goods, JCPenney, Sports Authority, and Guitar Center. The key takeaway here is to try and use the coupon anyways. Many employees are trained to always keep the customer happy and will either give you the discount, or have a different coupon you can use to score similar savings.</p> <p><em>How you ever been able to bend the rules of couponing to your advantage?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon">6 Ways to Score a Last-Minute Coupon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-100s-next-month-with-these-10-grocery-shopping-tips">Save $100s Next Month With These 10 Grocery Shopping Tips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping coupons discounts exclusions expired negotiating saving money Fri, 26 Feb 2016 10:30:28 +0000 Kyle James 1661855 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Expert Ways to Save Time and Money at Costco http://www.wisebread.com/8-expert-ways-to-save-time-and-money-at-costco <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-expert-ways-to-save-time-and-money-at-costco" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_grocery_store_000057104224.jpg" alt="Man using expert ways to save time and money at Costco" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you're a longtime Costco member, new to the club, or simply considering a membership, there are ways to make your money go further in the warehouse. Here are eight such tips that will help you walk out of your next Costco shopping trip with more of your hard-earned money. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-6-costco-items-will-easily-cover-your-55-membership?ref=seealso">These 6 Costco Items Will Easily Cover Your Membership</a>)</p> <h2>1. Know Which Kirkland Products Are a Must-Buy</h2> <p>There's no arguing the fact that the Costco Kirkland brand provides an excellent value on many items. But did you know that some Kirkland products are actually made by a name-brand manufacturer and simply repackaged, providing the best bang for your buck? Here are a few to be aware of.</p> <h3>Kirkland Beers</h3> <p>On the West coast, these bottles of beer come from a brewery in San Jose, CA named Hopfen and Malz Brewing Company, also known as&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ratebeer.com/brewers/kirkland-signature--costco-wholesale-corporation/20906/">Gordon Biersch</a>. East coast stores get their beer from Matt Brewing and Central states stores get there from Minhas, depending on the variety. By purchasing them with the Kirkland label, you'll easily spend a third less compared to similar craft beers.</p> <h3>Kirkland Tuna Fish</h3> <p>Apparently their canned tuna is&nbsp;<a href="http://www.brandculture.com/the-one-brand-breaks-all-rules-costco-kirkland-signature/">made by Bumble Bee</a>, making it a great value.</p> <h3>Kirkland Bourbon</h3> <p>The Kirkland variety is cheaper and&nbsp;<a href="http://insiderlouisville.com/business/retail-business/costcos-private-label-bourbon-wait-say-costco/">made by Buffalo Trace</a> specifically for the Costco warehouse.</p> <h3>Kirkland Batteries</h3> <p>Rumor has it that these batteries are actually manufactured by Duracell. Whether that's true or not I can't verify, but the fact of the matter is they often&nbsp;<a href="http://www.clarkhoward.com/kirkland-signature-battery-rules-new-aa-tally">out-perform the name-brands</a> and are significantly cheaper.</p> <h2>2. Start at the Back the Warehouse</h2> <p>While this tip may take a little getting used to, on your next trip to Costco, try putting on your &quot;blinders&quot; and head straight to the back of the warehouse. Costco always puts their best bargains at the back of the store, along with the outside walls. They do this knowing you'll have to walk by a bunch of irresistibly cool (and full-priced) items to get there. Avoid the temptations by working your way up to the checkout aisles last. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-frugal-rules-you-must-follow-when-shopping-at-costco?ref=seealso">Rules You Must Follow When Shopping at Costco</a>)</p> <h2>3. Shop Without a Membership</h2> <p>If you know someone who already has a Costco membership, ask them to pick up a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.costco.com/Costco-Cash-Card.product.10024438.html">Costco Cash Card</a>&nbsp;for you. While you do need to be a member to buy and reload these cards, you can use them to&nbsp;shop to your heart's content without a membership. Cards can be purchased in any amount from $25 up to $1,000, can be reloaded at any Costco location, and never expire. You can also conveniently use the cash card on Costco.com. This is a great option for college students as it allows them to easily limit their spending, or those who simply want to test out the warehouse before becoming a paying member. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-non-members-can-get-at-costco-including-cheap-eye-exams?ref=seealso">7 Things Non-Members Can Get at Costco</a>)</p> <h2>4. Stack Coupons</h2> <p>The vast majority of Costco shoppers have no idea this is even a possibility. While you can't use traditional newspaper coupons at Costco, you can stack their instant manufacturer rebates along with cash-back apps like&nbsp;<a href="https://snap.groupon.com/">Snap</a>,&nbsp;<a href="https://ibotta.com/">iBotta</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.berrycart.com/">BerryCart</a>, and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shopmium.com/us/app">Shopmium</a> to double your savings.</p> <p>As far as the instant rebates go, you'll find them posted around the Costco warehouse. So if you're buying dish soap, for instance, and you see that a particular brand is offering an instant rebate, pull out your smartphone and see if that brand also has a cashback offer available via one of the apps mentioned above. Often times it will, making it an easy way to stack your savings.</p> <h2>5. Always Refill Your Inkjet Cartridges at Costco</h2> <p>New inkjet cartridges can be really expensive, even at Costco. Instead of buying brand new ink, take advantage of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.costcoinkjetrefill.com/">Costco's refill service</a> and save a lot of money. You simply bring in your empty cartridges and Costco will refill them starting at only $7.49, which in many cases equals savings in the 70% range. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-probably-didnt-know-you-could-buy-at-costco?ref=seealso">10 Things You Didn't Know You Could Buy at Costco</a>)</p> <h2>6. Snag Big Christmas Toy Deals</h2> <p>Starting in November, Costco consistently sells toys for 30%&ndash;50% less than Amazon. For example, last year both retailers sold the popular Singing Olaf (<em>Frozen</em>) plush toy at Christmas. While Costco sold it for $14.99, Amazon sold it for twice that amount at $29.99. Also, Costco sold popular Lego sets for $13.99 while Amazon sold them for over $20. While the toy selection at Costco is definitely smaller than other stores, the products they do stock are sold at a major discount.</p> <h2>7. Avoid Aisle Endcaps</h2> <p>When shopping at Costco, the products on the aisle endcaps usually aren't a great deal. Typically these items have the largest profit margins, are full-priced, and are being pushed heavily via free samples. Try not to be tempted by the tasty samples and eye-catching displays. Instead, walk past these endcaps quickly and head for the real deals.</p> <h2>8. Don't Forget Their Price Protection Policy</h2> <p>While most Costco shoppers are already aware of their&nbsp;<a href="https://customerservice.costco.com/system/templates/selfservice/costco_en_us/#!portal/200500000001002/article/200500000040287/Costco-Return-Policy">lenient return policy</a>, many have no idea that they also offer a 30-day price protection policy. If the price of any item drops within 30 days of you purchasing it, simply bring in your receipt and they'll happily refund you the difference. If you lost your receipt, don't fret &mdash; just head to the customer service desk and explain the situation. In most cases, they'll be able to verify your order on their computer system and refund your money accordingly. This policy is especially useful when buying seasonal items, which are eventually reduced in price at the end of the season to make room for new inventory. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco?ref=seealso">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a>)</p> <p><em>What unique ways do you save money on your trips to Costco?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-expert-ways-to-save-time-and-money-at-costco">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-6-costco-items-will-easily-cover-your-55-membership">These 6 Costco Items Will Easily Cover Your $55 Membership</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break">4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping club costco discounts membership saving money warehouse store wholesale Mon, 15 Feb 2016 10:00:04 +0000 Kyle James 1654794 at http://www.wisebread.com What You Need to Know About Sample Sales http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-sample-sales <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-you-need-to-know-about-sample-sales" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_clothes_000026547400.jpg" alt="Woman learning what she needs to know about sample sales" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Sample sales can be a fun way to get unique items at rock-bottom prices. Most retail stores, clothing manufacturers, and boutiques have sample sales from time to time, which can translate to big savings for you. In order to get the most out of the sale, it's important to strategize and take advantage of a few simple tips, which we've outlined below.</p> <h2>What Are Sample Sales?</h2> <p>Sample sales are the store's opportunity to clear out inventory from runways, one-of-a-kind items, and unique garments. In a traditional sample sale, designers will sell samples of new retail that have been previewed to buyers. This means you may be able to find some of the newest designs, many of which will be one-of-a-kind, at killer prices &mdash; anywhere from 20%&ndash;90% off. However, it can also mean that the items aren't up to the designer's usual standards because it never actually made it to production.</p> <p>Sometimes, other sales (like overstock sales) will be referred to as a sample sale. These are actually just a retail store clearing out inventory from last season to make room for new stock.&nbsp;</p> <h2>Where to Find Sample Sales</h2> <p>Sample sales often take place in warehouses, showrooms, and small boutique shops. Sites like <a href="http://ny.racked.com/tags/sample-sales">Racked</a>, <a href="http://nymag.com/shopping/">NYMag</a>, <a href="https://www.clothingline.com/">Clothingline</a>, and <a href="http://www.260samplesale.com/">260 Sample Sale</a> can give you a heads up on when the next sample sale will be near you.</p> <p>You can also follow a schedule every year to estimate when the next sale will be. Some stores do a yearly sample sale, some follow a semi-annual schedule, and some clear out inventory every season. Sample sale season runs from November through May in large cities like New York.</p> <p>Either get to the sale early, before anyone else, or at the end, after everyone has left. If you are able to arrive first, you will have the best pick of items. Arriving at the end of the sale can usually result in bigger savings and better chances of negotiating a lower price, since the stores are desperate to clear out any remaining inventory.</p> <h2>Negotiate Prices</h2> <p>One of the great things about sample sales is you can usually negotiate the price. If you are buying more than one item, you might be able to negotiate a lower total cost.</p> <p>Look for imperfections for further markdowns. Anything from a loose button to a small snag can equal big savings. Simply take the item to the register and ask if they would be willing to offer a discount. Don't specify a specific markdown; let the sales associate offer a discount first. If they won't work with you on the price, ask if they're willing to throw something else in (like a free accessory). In most cases, you can walk away with a discount, but in a worst-case scenario, it doesn't hurt to ask. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-smart-and-fun-things-you-could-do-if-you-paid-less-rent">8 Smart and Fun Things You Could Do if You Paid Less Rent</a>)</p> <h2>Try Everything On</h2> <p>Some items may not be true to size, and others may not have sizing marked at all. Most sample sales don't have a fitting room available, so try on what you can on top of your clothes. Hold any other items up to yourself and have a friend take a photo with their phone so you can get an idea of what the garments will look like on you.</p> <p>If there is a dressing room available, try on as much as you can before making the purchase. Remember that items sold at sample sales are almost always non-returnable.</p> <p>Regardless of whether there is a dressing room or not, it's always a good idea to follow Cher Horowitz's advice and also take a photo of yourself in the clothes (or with clothes held up to you). Photos never lie, and you won't have to rely on unforgiving dressing room mirrors or lighting.</p> <h2>Master the Sale</h2> <p>Take advantage of these tricks of the trade and you'll be the master of the next sample sale.</p> <h3>Be Very Picky</h3> <p>Just because you waited in line doesn't mean you have to make a purchase. If an item doesn't fit perfectly, it can always be altered &mdash; but you should factor in the cost of tailoring before making the purchase.</p> <h3>Watch Your Budget</h3> <p>It can be easy to overspend when you feel like you're getting a good deal, but keep your budget in mind so that you don't overdo it.</p> <h3>Bring Cash</h3> <p>Sample sales are often cash-only. By bringing cash, you can also keep a good handle on your budget.</p> <h3>Go for the Bins</h3> <p>Bargain bins may seem intimidating, especially when they are surrounded by a horde of shoppers. However, this is where you'll find some of the best items at the best prices, so it is worth a look.</p> <h3>Start Shopping at the Back</h3> <p>Typically, shoppers start at the front of the store. By making your way to the back first, you'll be able to find the items that most people haven't rummaged through yet. Accessories, shoes, and the most deeply discounted items are usually also in the back of the store, so this is a great place to start.</p> <h3>Dress Comfortably</h3> <p>Make sure to wear comfortable clothes and shoes that you can easily change in and out of, so that you can quickly try clothes on if there is a fitting room available. Think gym clothes or tight basics, such as a tank top, lettings, and flats. Also wear a cross-body bag, since a traditional purse will be cumbersome and only get in the way.</p> <h3>Be Prepared to Wait in Line</h3> <p>Many sample sales won't let new shoppers into the store until some of the shoppers already in the store leave. Be prepared to wait and enjoy the time in line with a friend.</p> <h3>Leave the Kids at Home</h3> <p>A sample sale full of fashionable shoppers is not the place for kids to be running around. You should be able to enjoy yourself and focus on getting the best deal possible (and not on chasing down your little ones).</p> <h2>Other Types of Sample Sales</h2> <p>Sample sales are also commonly referred to as warehouse sales, which are simply blowout sales of old or seasonal inventory. If you don't feel like fighting the crowds, you can also take advantage of deep discounts at sample sales online on sites like <a href="http://www.gilt.com/">Gilt</a> and <a href="https://www.ruelala.com">Rue La La</a>.</p> <p><em>Do you have other tips for mastering a sample sale? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-sample-sales">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-at-the-dollar-store-and-10-you-should">10 Things You Should Never Buy at the Dollar Store (and 10 You Should)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-you-shouldnt-order-on-amazon">5 Things You Shouldn&#039;t Order on Amazon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-buys-at-tj-maxx">7 Best Buys at TJ Maxx</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bargains designer clothes discounts sample sales Thu, 04 Feb 2016 12:00:02 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1647339 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways Being a Safe Driver Will Save You Big Money http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_driving_car_000052861520.jpg" alt="Woman learning how being a safe driver will save her big" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>That speeding ticket can cost you &mdash; to the tune of an initial fine of $100 or more. That's bad enough, but then comes the hit to your insurance premium. You can expect the cost of your auto insurance to jump by at least 20% if you're caught driving 15 miles per hour over the speed limit, according to a study by InsuranceQuotes.com.</p> <p>But if you follow the speed limit, you don't have to worry about this financial hit. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-new-car-costs-the-dealer-is-hiding-from-you">10 New Car Costs the Dealer Is Hiding From You</a>)</p> <p>That's just one of the ways that being a safe driver can save you a load of money. Here's a look at the financial benefits that a safe driving record will bring you.</p> <h2>Lower Insurance Rates and Discounts</h2> <p>A clean driving record &mdash; one free of auto accidents, speeding tickets, or other moving violations &mdash; can dramatically reduce the amount you pay to your auto insurer each month.</p> <p>Insurance Quotes and Quadrant Information Services studied the impact of traffic incidents on insurance rates, and discovered that driving under the influence increased auto insurance premiums by an average of 93%. Reckless driving boosted it upward by an average of 82%. For speeding, the average increase varied, but those drivers going up to 15 miles per hour over the limit generally saw their insurance premiums jump by 21%.</p> <p>Another study by InsuranceQuotes.com, released in early 2015, found that drivers who make one accident claim will see their auto insurance rates jump by an average of 41%. Those who make two claims in a year will see their auto insurance rates increase by 93%.</p> <p>If you're a safe driver, you can actually be rewarded and save money by way of discounts. Allstate offers savings of 22% on policies after three consecutive years without any violations or accidents. After five years without any violations or accidents, drivers can reduce their insurance rates by 35%. Allstate also offers a defensive-driver discount. Under this program, drivers who are 55 or older and who complete six or more hours of defensive-driving courses can save up to 10% on their auto insurance.</p> <p>Don't have Allstate? Geico offers a discount of 26% for drivers who have been accident-free for five years. American Family offers drivers without accidents, violations, or claims a discount of 5% to 10%. Contact your auto insurance provider and see what safe driver discounts are available.</p> <h2>No Speeding Tickets</h2> <p>Getting a speeding ticket isn't much fun. It's costly, too. Last year, NerdWallet took a look at what a speeding ticket can cost drivers in California. According to the site, those drivers who were ticketed for going 15 miles per hour over the speed limit paid an average of $234 when fees and surcharges were taken into account.</p> <p>In 2013, insurer Esurance reported that the average speeding ticket costs drivers throughout the United States $150. That's a lot of money. And it doesn't even take into account how much your insurance rate will jump after a speeding ticket. Speaking of which...</p> <h2>Gas Savings</h2> <p>You might not think that driving the speed limit will save you money at the fuel pump, but it will. According to the Department of Energy's FuelEconomy.gov, aggressive driving &mdash; which includes speeding, rapid acceleration, and hard braking &mdash; can lower your car's gas mileage by 33% at highway speeds and by 5% when you're driving in town.</p> <p>By driving the speed limit, and by avoiding rapid acceleration and braking, you can save up to 21 cents per gallon in fuel costs.</p> <h2>Fewer Traffic Accidents</h2> <p>Car accidents are terrifying events. They're also expensive ones.</p> <p>Speeding, not paying attention, or driving under the influence can not only result in terrible injury or death, but tremendous economic impact. According to a 2010 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the overall cost of motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. amounted to nearly $1 trillion. By being more aware, you can save yourself and others the costly financial burden of deductibles, auto and property repairs, rate hikes, and bodily injury.</p> <p>Driving safely and at the speed limit won't completely protect you from car accidents and their costs. But it will help.</p> <p><em>Do your driving habits help or hurt your wallet?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-and-not-do-when-youre-in-a-car-accident">What to Do (and Not Do) When You&#039;re in a Car Accident</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-steps-you-must-take-if-youve-been-in-a-car-accident">10 Steps You Must Take If You&#039;ve Been in a Car Accident</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-what-that-ticket-you-got-will-do-to-your-car-insurance-rate">This Is What That Ticket You Got Will Do to Your Car Insurance Rate</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-know-when-renting-a-moving-truck">What to Know When Renting a Moving Truck</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-you-know-how-to-use-a-parking-meter-serious-question">Do you know how to use a parking meter? Serious question.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation auto insurance discounts driving rates safety tickets Tue, 05 Jan 2016 18:00:07 +0000 Dan Rafter 1629243 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Easy Ways to Use Technology to Save on Christmas Shopping http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-use-technology-to-save-on-christmas-shopping <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-easy-ways-to-use-technology-to-save-on-christmas-shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_texting_winter_000047883380.jpg" alt="Woman using technology to save on Christmas shopping" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's no arguing that technology can make life a little sweeter in terms of saving us time and money &mdash; both things that tend to be at a premium during the holidays. Whether it's using free apps on your smartphone, or taking advantage of online shopping tricks to score the best deal, you should definitely consider using tech to lower your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/december-deals-that-are-better-than-black-friday">shopping bill in December</a> and beyond. Here are a few ideas to get you started.</p> <h2>1. Use a Christmas Shopping App</h2> <p>Since most of us are walking around with very powerful computers in our pockets, it makes sense to use our smartphones to manage our Christmas shopping. My favorite app is the free for iOS&nbsp;<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/santas-bag-christmas-gift/id397698040">Santa's Bag</a>, which allows you to create gift lists, import recipients, and most importantly, set a budget to keep your spending in check. The app interface is very intuitive and quickly gives you access to the gifts you have bought for each person along with how much of your budget is left for each recipient.</p> <p>Another app worth downloading to help with your Christmas shopping is the free<a href="http://shopsavvy.com/"> ShopSavvy</a> (for iOS and Android). This app allows you to scan the barcode of the product you're considering purchasing and instantly find out if another store has it cheaper &mdash; or if it's available at a lower price online. If you use it consistently, it can easily save you 15%&ndash;20% off your shopping bill this year.</p> <h2>2. Social Media Is Santa's Best Friend</h2> <p>The next time you're standing in line waiting to purchase a couple Christmas gifts, pull out your smartphone and check the social media feeds of the retailer. Many are starting to proactively promote exclusive coupons and deals on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. Often it will only require you to show the coupon on your phone to the cashier, which they will scan, and you'll collect the savings. Make it a healthy frugal habit whenever you're waiting at the register.</p> <h2>3. Hit Up Live Chat and Negotiate a Deal</h2> <p>While you may be able to ask a live chat operator for a coupon, are you aware that you can actually negotiate a lower price on certain items? This works best for laptops, HDTVs, and higher-end electronics. On a whim, I recently started a chat session with Dell.com and saved a quick $50 on a new laptop simply by asking if there was any wiggle room in the price. Be sure to negotiate the price before you add any coupon codes to your online order, as you're less likely to get a price reduction if the operator notices you're already getting a discount. Besides Dell, online retailers where this has been known to work include Hewlett Packard, Kohl's, JCPenney, and even Target.</p> <h2>4. Buy Gift Cards for Cheap</h2> <p>If you're planning on buying a gift card or two this year, be sure to first stop by a website like GiftCardGranny or Raise.com and purchase one for less than face value. These sites purchase unwanted gift cards from folks and then sell them back to you for a small profit. For example, you may find a $100 TJ Maxx gift card for $85, or a $50 JCPenney gift card for less than $45.</p> <p>Also, if you're a little less tech savvy, be sure to try your local Costco. Not only do they have gift cards for big-box retailers, but they also have cards for local restaurants and attractions. Be aware that you'll typically have to buy a pack of three or four gift cards to save, but the savings is usually in the 15&ndash;20% range. The larger quantity can actually come in handy when buying for teachers and friends.</p> <h2>5. Always Seek Out a Coupon Code</h2> <p>If you're not seeking out a coupon code when shopping online, you're leaving significant money on the table. Make it a smart frugal habit to do a quick Google search for &quot;[store name] coupons&quot; and you stand a great chance of finding a money-saving code you can plug in while checking out from the retailer's website.</p> <h2>6. Stack Coupons at Target</h2> <p>Target has fairly competitive pricing to begin with, but be sure to stack coupons for some incredible savings. They'll actually let you stack a manufacturer coupon, a Target store coupon, and a Cartwheel offer on a single product. The best way to make this work is to first find a manufacturer coupon at CouponMom.com or Coupons.com, then print a&nbsp;<a href="http://coupons.target.com/">Target-specific coupon</a> from their site, then download the&nbsp;<a href="http://cartwheel.target.com/">Cartwheel app</a> and use one of their offers as well. If you can stack all three when shopping in-store, you can easily save 40%&ndash;65% off individual items.</p> <p><em>What is your strategy to keep your spending in check and save money this time of year?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-use-technology-to-save-on-christmas-shopping">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-cash-back-sites-to-earn-you-thousands-per-year">30+ Cash Back Sites to Earn You Thousands Per Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-last-minute-coupon">6 Ways to Score a Last-Minute Coupon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-shopping-apps-thatll-actually-save-you-money-in-2016">The 8 Shopping Apps That&#039;ll Actually Save You Money in 2016</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping apps coupons discounts gift buying gift cards Holidays spending Mon, 14 Dec 2015 16:00:07 +0000 Kyle James 1619709 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Ways to Save Money at Whole Foods http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-money-at-whole-foods <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-ways-to-save-money-at-whole-foods" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/whole_foods_market_000031911792.jpg" alt="Learning ways to save money at whole foods" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whole Foods has some of the best produce, organic finds, and gourmet treats. However, Whole Foods can also be very expensive, and you can easily spend way more than you bargained for. That's why we've come up with some of the easiest ways to save money at Whole Foods.</p> <h2>1. Shop on a Wednesday or Friday</h2> <p>While you can find special deals every day of the week (like $1 Taco Tuesday), you'll enjoy the greatest savings at Whole Foods on Wednesdays and Fridays. New weekly sales start on Wednesdays, and if you get there early in the day, you can get first dibs on the new items while still catching sales from the previous week. They also offer Friday-only sales.</p> <h2>2. Bring Your Own Reusable Bags and Jars</h2> <p>Sure, $0.10 per bag may not seem like a lot, but over time, forgetting to bring your reusable bags can really add up. Along with saving you money, bringing your own bags is also better for the environment. If you are planning on shopping the bulk bins, bring your own jars or containers, too. Customer service will weigh the jar before you go to the bulk section to subtract the weight from your total purchase.</p> <h2>3. Buy the 365 Brand</h2> <p>The 365 brand is Whole Foods' generic line of packaged items. They have all the basics you'll need, along with hundreds of organic products. Fortunately, the 365 brand items are actually really good. In fact, 365 has become so popular that plans are in motion to open smaller value stores called 365 by Whole Foods Market. They are set to open five locations in the second half of 2016.</p> <h2>4. Buy in Bulk</h2> <p>Whenever you are able to buy in bulk, you can save up to 10% on your purchase. Simply freeze any extra ingredients or items that won't be in season for long. If you are a wine drinker, purchasing six bottles of wine at a time will save you 10%. You can also look for the Three Wishes brand, which is Whole Foods' bargain store label (under $5 a bottle). Make sure to also visit the bulk bins, where you can save money on nuts, pasta, oats, dried fruit, herbs, spices, and even candy.</p> <h2>5. Don't Make Whole Foods Your Only Grocery Stop</h2> <p>Sure, organic, locally sourced food tastes better, but you shouldn't spend your whole food budget on it. For a quick rule of thumb, if you will be eating the skin, you should go organic. Otherwise, you'll likely find cheaper generic produce at your local farmer's market or grocery store. Shop at your regular grocery store for all of your staple items, too, and leave Whole Foods for specialty items like fancy cheese and prepared foods.</p> <h2>6. Make Returns When Necessary</h2> <p>If you've overspent or changed your mind about something, simply return it to the store. Whole Foods has a habit of hiding prices on certain specialty items, so don't be ashamed of making a return when you've accidentally spent too much.</p> <h2>7. Buy More Frozen Items</h2> <p>Frozen food is usually cheaper, and you won't have to sacrifice quality or selection. In fact, in many cases, frozen produce has the same or more benefits compared to fresh. Go for frozen fish and meat, too. You might think you are purchasing fresh fish at the seafood counter, but often it's actually been previously frozen &mdash; so you may as well buy frozen to begin with and save on cost. With Individually Quick Frozen (IQF) shrimp or chicken, thaw only what you need, and have cost-effective meals ready to go.</p> <h2>8. Stick to Your List</h2> <p>Take inventory of what you have at home before you head to Whole Foods. Make a list of what you need and stick to it. Items at the checkout line are meant to attract your attention and entice you to buy them, so try to ignore them. Getting free samples throughout the store is great, but only if you are able to bypass the temptation to buy.</p> <h2>9. Look for Deals</h2> <p>Clipping or downloading coupons is also a great way to save at Whole Foods. You could also be more direct, and keep an eye out for yellow and red discount tags in the store or check Whole Foods' website, weekly circular, and social media pages to find up-to-date sales. While you're shopping, ask the butcher, deli, bakery, or any store associate about which special one-day sales are available. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-100s-next-month-with-these-10-grocery-shopping-tips?ref=seealso">Save $100s Next Month With These 10 Grocery Shopping Tips</a>)</p> <h2>10. Take Advantage of Budget-Friendly Recipes</h2> <p>Whole Foods offers helpful tips and solutions for their budget-minded shoppers. For instance, you can take advantage of their <a href="http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/about-our-products/whole-deal/budget-recipes">budget-friendly recipes</a> and <a href="http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/holidays/servings-calculator">servings calculator</a> to figure out how much food you need for big events and dinner parties.</p> <h2>11. Get a Supplement Punch Card</h2> <p>With a supplement punch card, you can enjoy savings and cash back after spending a certain amount of money on 365 Everyday Value brand supplements. The 365 Everyday Value supplements are more affordable, but can provide the same ingredients and results as big name brands.</p> <h2>12. Use Caution at the Salad Bar</h2> <p>Whole Foods has an impressive salad bar. However, the price is determined by weight, so it can be easy to get carried away with heavier items.</p> <p>On the other hand, if you need a small amount of a particular side dish, you'll save money by buying a small amount of that dish at the salad bar. For instance, buying a small container of prepared potato salad can be cheaper than buying all the ingredients required to make several servings of potato salad that you can't finish.</p> <p><em>Do you know of other ways to save money at Whole Foods? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-money-at-whole-foods">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shopping-at-whole-foods-12-smart-ways-to-save">Shopping at Whole Foods: 12 Smart Ways to Save</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-foods-that-are-actually-cheaper-at-whole-foods">6 Foods That Are Actually Cheaper At Whole Foods</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-better-prices-on-these-6-grocery-store-buys">Negotiate Better Prices on These 6 Grocery Store Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-only-5-grocery-shopping-techniques-you-need">The Only 5 Grocery Shopping Techniques You Need</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping buying bulk discounts groceries Whole Foods Mon, 07 Dec 2015 18:01:04 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1618114 at http://www.wisebread.com 25 Major Retailers That Give Employees Time Off for Thanksgiving http://www.wisebread.com/25-major-retailers-that-give-employees-time-off-for-thanksgiving <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/25-major-retailers-that-give-employees-time-off-for-thanksgiving" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000026543194_Small.jpg" alt="retailers that are closed on Thanksgiving" title="retailers that are closed on Thanksgiving" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Thanksgiving is almost here, and with it comes a very busy shopping season. Stores are opening earlier and earlier in a desperate bid to grab hungry bargain-hunters, many on Thanksgiving Day itself. Through it all, the employees of these stores have to be there with a smile and a helping hand, when most would much rather be at home with friends and family.</p> <p>But, some major retailers are starting to fight back, preferring to give their employees time off over the holiday. Here are 25 stores that will not be open this Thanksgiving.</p> <h2>1. REI</h2> <p>Apart from being closed on Thanksgiving, the chain devoted to the outdoors is literally walking the walk this year by paying its employees to take Black Friday off, too. It&rsquo;s all part of the company&rsquo;s mission to help people enjoy the outdoors, and wants both its staff, and customers, to get out and enjoy nature. In an email sent to its members in over 140 stores around the country, REI stated: &ldquo;Instead of reporting to work, we&rsquo;re paying our employees to do what we love most &mdash; be outside.&rdquo;</p> <h2>2. Patagonia</h2> <p>In typical Patagonia style, a spokesperson said, &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a holiday &mdash; we&rsquo;re closed!&rdquo; when asked about Thanksgiving Day hours. The company is famous for treating employees well, offering some <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/a-company-that-profits-as-it-pampers-workers/2014/10/22/d3321b34-4818-11e4-b72e-d60a9229cc10_story.html">exceptional benefits</a>.</p> <h2>3. DSW</h2> <p>Need shoes, or big winter boots? Get them before or after Thanksgiving Day, because one of the biggest shoe retailers is staying closed. A spokesperson said, &quot;While many retail stores will be opening for business on Thanksgiving Day, this year we continue the DSW tradition of keeping ours closed. Family time is extremely important to us, and we want our associates to enjoy the holiday with their loved ones.&rdquo;</p> <h2>4. Nordstrom</h2> <p>&ldquo;We won&rsquo;t be decking our halls until Friday, November 27,&rdquo; says the notice in Nordstrom windows everywhere. &ldquo;Why? Well, we just like the idea of celebrating one holiday at a time. From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving.&rdquo; Well said.</p> <h2>5. H&amp;M</h2> <p>The clothing retailer known for giving people incredible bargains is closing all 400 of its stores this Thanksgiving. The decision was made by H&amp;M president Daniel Kulle, saying, &ldquo;In the tradition of Thanksgiving, H&amp;M will close our U.S. stores on Thanksgiving Day, allowing our store teams to enjoy this time with their families and friends.&rdquo;</p> <h2>6. GameStop</h2> <p>If you want new video games to play over the Thanksgiving break, make sure you get them before the big day. GameStop is closing on Thanksgiving, saying that it, too, recognizes the importance of family time. What&rsquo;s more, the chain has put together this handy guide on helping with the &ldquo;<a href="http://news.gamestop.com/press-release/consumer/gamestop-offers-tips-help-avoid-holiday-shopping-blues">Holiday Shopping Blues</a>.&rdquo;</p> <h2>7. Ace Hardware, Home Depot, True Value, and Lowes</h2> <p>Don&rsquo;t wait until the last minute for those essential DIY tools and fixtures, because the four big hardware stores are all remaining closed on Thanksgiving Day. Ace Hardware has been doing this for several years, and Home Depot, True Value, and Lowes are following suit. All four will be open on Black Friday though, with plenty of doorbuster deals.</p> <h2>8. Barnes &amp; Noble</h2> <p>If you&rsquo;re planning to settle down with a good book or movie after the Thanksgiving feast, get your shopping done ahead of time. Once again, Barnes &amp; Noble is closed for Thanksgiving.</p> <h2>9. Costco and Sam&rsquo;s Club</h2> <p>Both of the big warehouse stores will be giving their employees the day off on Thanksgiving. This means you can expect them both to be extra busy in the run up to the big day. So, get what you need well ahead of time, and leave the last minute shopping to the smaller grocery stores.</p> <h2>10. Jo-Ann Fabric Stores</h2> <p>Thanksgiving is usually a day when people start to put up holiday decorations. So, if you&rsquo;re looking for those extras from Jo-Ann&rsquo;s, get them beforehand.</p> <h2>11. Staples</h2> <p>Hopefully, you won&rsquo;t be in need of any office supplies on Thanksgiving. If you do need printer paper, ink, pens, or anything else, get them from Staples early on in the week. The stores will all be closed on Thursday.</p> <h2>12. Petco and PetSmart</h2> <p>Remember, your pets need to eat on Thanksgiving day as well, so don&rsquo;t forget them! The two biggest pet chains are closed however, so stock up on food, treats, and toys.</p> <h2>13. American Girl</h2> <p>My daughters both love American Girl, so I know for sure that they will be closed on Thanksgiving, but open again on Black Friday. However, don&rsquo;t expect to see big discounts. AG is a little like Apple; they rarely have any kind of noteworthy sales.</p> <h2>14. Marshalls, TJ Maxx, and Homegoods</h2> <p>All three discount retailers are owned by TJX, and as such, all of them share the same Thanksgiving policy &mdash; they will remain closed for the holiday. Black Friday, they are open for business.</p> <h2>15. Pier 1 Imports</h2> <p>One of the earlier stores to adopt this trend, Pier 1 Imports has been closed on Thanksgiving Day since 2011. And this year will be no exception. If you need something, get it now.</p> <h2>16. Burlington Coat Factory</h2> <p>Looking for a big winter coat? Don&rsquo;t wait until Thanksgiving Day to go shopping at Burlington Coat Factory. All stores will be closed that day, but plan to open on Black Friday with some huge discounts.</p> <h2>17. Dillard&rsquo;s</h2> <p>The big department store is once again closed on Thanksgiving, and has been doing so for 77 years. It will, of course, be open again on Black Friday.</p> <h2>18. Harbor Freight Tools</h2> <p>The DIY-lovers everywhere will not be happy. I know my father-in-law loves a stroll around HFT, especially to get out of the house and chaos for a few hours. But this year, it&rsquo;s closed.</p> <h2>19. Babies R Us</h2> <p>Although it&rsquo;s sister company, Toys R Us, will be open on Thanksgiving Day, the baby retailer has decided to stay closed. Stock up on diapers and formula!</p> <p>And if you&rsquo;re curious, the following stores WILL OPEN on Thanksgiving. While this may not be very good news for their respective employees, it could be very good for you if you forget something important.</p> <p>Walgreens: Open 9 a.m. &ndash; 6 p.m.</p> <p>Walmart: Open 6 p.m.</p> <p>Rite Aid: Open at 8 a.m.</p> <p>J.C.Penney: Open 3 p.m. &ndash; 10 p.m.</p> <p>Kohl&rsquo;s: Open at 6 p.m.</p> <p>Best Buy: Open 5 p.m. &ndash; 1 a.m.</p> <p>Target: Open 6 p.m.</p> <p>Toys R Us: Open 5 p.m.</p> <p>Macy&rsquo;s: Open 6 p.m.</p> <p>Sports Authority: Open 6 p.m.</p> <p>Sears: Open 6 p.m. &ndash; 2 a.m.</p> <p>Old Navy: Open 4 p.m.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-major-retailers-that-give-employees-time-off-for-thanksgiving">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-black-friday-deal-without-leaving-home">6 Ways to Score a Black Friday Deal Without Leaving Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday">6 Genius Ways to Save on Cyber Monday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-use-technology-to-save-on-christmas-shopping">6 Easy Ways to Use Technology to Save on Christmas Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping black friday discounts Holidays retail store closings Thanksgiving Thu, 26 Nov 2015 00:00:15 +0000 Paul Michael 1616808 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Genius Ways to Save on Cyber Monday http://www.wisebread.com/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_online_shopping_000015054304.jpg" alt="Woman finding genius ways to save on Cyber Monday" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Cyber Monday (November 30th this year) is the day when online shopping deals take center stage. Last year, Cyber Monday garnered over $2 billion in sales &mdash; and this year it's projected to do even more. While there will be a plethora of deals available, you can easily maximize your savings by following these tips.</p> <h2>1. Know the Best Products to Buy</h2> <p>Historically, some items provide the most bang for your buck on Cyber Monday, even more than Black Friday in many cases. Here are the best products to watch.</p> <h3>Apparel and Shoes</h3> <p>Aside from Free Shipping Day on December 18th, Cyber Monday is the single best day to shop online for new clothing and shoes. Retailers like Gap, Old Navy, Ann Taylor, American Eagle, and Lands' End always offer online coupon codes in the 25%&ndash;40% off range, with free shipping. Always be aware of return policies so you don't get stuck paying to return clothing that doesn't fit.</p> <h3>Brand Name TVs</h3> <p>If you fail to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-black-friday-deal-without-leaving-home">score a Black Friday deal</a> on a new TV, don't fret &mdash; Cyber Monday is actually a better day to save on a quality brand. Black Friday is all about deals on third tier manufacturers, many of which you've never heard of. But Cyber Monday regularly sees discounts from online consumer electronics sites in the 30%&ndash;40% range on brands like Samsung, Panasonic, LG, Sony, and Vizio.</p> <h3>Gaming System Bundles</h3> <p>If you're in the market for an Xbox One or PlayStation 4, you stand a good chance of saving money on Cyber Monday. Your best bet for savings is a bundle which typically includes the actual system along with a game and an additional controller. Online retailers like Gamestop, Target, Costco, and Walmart offered discounts in the 20%&ndash;30% range last year on Cyber Monday.</p> <h3>Beauty Products</h3> <p>If you need to stock up on beauty products, Cyber Monday would be a wise day to do it. Last year we saw online deals like 25% off at Macys, 30% off at Avon, 25% off at Smashbox, 20% off at Lancome, and 40% off at Ulta. Look for more of the same this year.</p> <h3>Quality Laptops</h3> <p>If you need a budget laptop, shop on Black Friday. But if you need a laptop with specs that'll have you video editing, gaming, and running several large programs at once, shop on Cyber Monday. Historically, it's one of the best days of the year to shop online at Best Buy, Fry's, and NewEgg and save money on a quality laptop from brands like Dell, Lenovo, Toshiba, and Apple.</p> <h2>2. Stack Coupons</h2> <p>There will undoubtedly be a large number of Cyber Monday coupons available for those willing to seek them out. Did you know that some sites actually let you stack more than one coupon, which leads to huge savings?</p> <h3>Kohl's</h3> <p>Kohl's will have a ton of Cyber Monday coupons available, so do a Google search for &quot;Kohls Coupons&quot; and start stacking. They'll let you combine a percent off coupon with a dollar off coupon, but note that you can't stack two &quot;percent off&quot; coupons during one transaction. But the good news is that you can stack two &quot;dollar off&quot; coupons when making an online purchase.</p> <h3>Target</h3> <p>Target's website lets you stack one manufacturer coupon, one Target coupon (must have online promo code printed on it), and one Cartwheel offer.</p> <h3>NewEgg</h3> <p>They'll let you stack an unlimited number of online coupons on your transaction. The catch is that you can only use a single coupon code on each item in your virtual cart.</p> <h2>3. Free Shipping Is Great, But...</h2> <p>If you plan to cross a few names off your Christmas list on Cyber Monday, it's smart to start with a website that offers free shipping. But be warned that free shipping is not always what it's cracked up to be. Many sites will actually jack up their prices just before releasing a Cyber Monday coupon for free shipping or a percent off your purchase. This is why I recommend using a site like PriceGrabber or Google Shopping to quickly find the cheapest price online, then go look for a Cyber Monday coupon code to make that price even cheaper.</p> <h2>4. Abandon Your Shopping Cart to Trigger a Deal</h2> <p>If you're considering a big Cyber Monday purchase like a new appliance or HDTV, I have a passive aggressive way to score a special discount at many online retailers. In the days leading up to Cyber Monday, visit the website you want to shop, login to your account, and add the item to your shopping cart. Then, log out right before you enter your credit card information. Sit back and wait for your coupon to show up in your email inbox. It could be a coupon for free shipping, or it could be coupon code good for up to 20% off your purchase.</p> <p>Websites where this technique works include Toys R Us, Bass Pro Shops, Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, Macy's, and Williams-Sonoma. Retailers know you're very close to completing the transaction and are willing to entice you back to the their site with an exclusive coupon. Try it this Cyber Monday and you stand a great chance of scoring an extra discount that you might not otherwise get.</p> <h2>5. Use Social Media to Score a Deal</h2> <p>The past couple Cyber Mondays, retailers have been littering their Facebook and Twitter feeds with exclusive deals and coupons. So before you do any online shopping, be sure to check the retailer's social media accounts for extra savings. Last year we saw exclusive discounts from Banana Republic, Crate &amp; Barrel, Best Buy, JCPenney, and Lands' End to name a few. Most are limited time offers so be ready to pounce when you find the deal.</p> <h2>6. If a Deal Looks Too Good to Be True&hellip;</h2> <p>...It probably is. Cyber Monday emails are already floating around, and with that comes the added threat of scam sites designed to steal your money. Be suspicious of any email that claims savings significantly lower than the competition. When using price comparison tools, be cautious of any website that you're not familiar with, especially if they're offering an item at an unusually low price. Always do a quick Google search of the company's name, followed by &quot;reviews&quot; or &quot;complaints,&quot; and see if you can find out a little bit more about them. Trust your gut.</p> <p>Also, when you reach the checkout page that is asking for your credit card information, take note of the browser url &mdash; does it change from &quot;http://&quot; to &quot;https://&quot;? If the all-important &quot;s&quot; shows up, that means the website has taken the proper steps to keep your credit card and personal information secure. If the site doesn't have the letter &quot;s&quot; showing, do not enter your credit card information. It could be compromised by a third party.</p> <p><em>Are you planning on checking out Cyber Monday deals? If so, do you have any websites or deals in mind?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-spot-and-avoid-a-fake-sale">4 Ways to Spot and Avoid a Fake Sale</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-amazon-deal-hacks-you-may-not-already-know">16 Amazon Deal Hacks You May Not Already Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping coupons cyber monday discounts online shopping retail sales Wed, 25 Nov 2015 16:01:00 +0000 Kyle James 1616006 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_holiday_shopping_000052946922.jpg" alt="Women learning why Black Friday craziness is worth it" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It seems like all the cool kids poke fun at Black Friday, and I get it. Black Friday is crazy! However, there are also some great reasons for hitting the stores the day after Thanksgiving. Here's why you might choose to head out and score some amazing deals on one of America's biggest shopping days. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/surprising-ways-to-save-even-more-on-black-friday">Hidden Ways to Save Even More on Black Friday</a>)</p> <h2>1. Discounts</h2> <p>Black Friday sales offer some amazing discounts. Sure, not every product advertised is at the lowest price, but it's easy to do some research online to find out whether a deal is good.</p> <p>Black Friday discounts come in especially handy when someone wants something for Christmas that you can't actually afford. Check online ahead of time, so you know about how much the item usually costs. Then, if a store offers a better deal on it, it's totally worth your while to go out and get it.</p> <p>These discounts are also useful if you are struggling to make ends meet financially. Need new work clothes but can't afford them at regular prices? You're likely to find some deals on Black Friday. The same is true for children's clothes and common household items. If you need to save money, the Black Friday struggle can totally be worth your while.</p> <h2>2. You'll Feel Good About Your Deals</h2> <p>People tend to feel playful and excited when they get the deal they're after. Basically, what can seem like a struggle turns into something that feels more like a game. So if you're dreading holiday shopping, going out on Black Friday can make it a little more exciting. See the whole thing as a puzzle you need to solve and your fellow shoppers as competitors, and it just might be the most fun you've ever had on a shopping trip.</p> <h2>3. Finish Christmas Shopping Before the Last Minute</h2> <p>If you're one of those people who finished their Christmas shopping in July, this isn't for you. But if you're like the rest of us, Black Friday can save your life.</p> <p>For this to work, you have to be organized. Look through the ads and find out what you want to buy for each person on your list. Write it all down. Check it twice. Make sure you're actually getting good deals. Then go out, follow your plan and, at the end of the day, all you'll have left is the wrapping.</p> <h2>4. The Thrill of the Chase</h2> <p>If the idea of beating out other shoppers for a great deal doesn't do it for you, thinking of Black Friday as a hunt can make it a lot of fun. People enjoy being part of a group, and they enjoy pursuing goals as part of a team. If hunting down just the right item at just the right price excites you, it's totally worth all the hassle to get out there on Black Friday.</p> <h2>5. It's Kinda Fun</h2> <p>Sure, there can be jerks out there on Black Friday, but my experience is that the vast majority of Black Friday shoppers are extra nice. People chat in line, or even pay it forward at places like Starbucks. Since Black Friday is the &quot;official&quot; start of the Christmas season, people often feel especially festive. When you catch the Christmas spirit, it's totally worth all of the frustrations of shopping on Black Friday.</p> <p><em>Will you be out there on Black Friday? Why or why not?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-major-retailers-that-give-employees-time-off-for-thanksgiving">25 Major Retailers That Give Employees Time Off for Thanksgiving</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday">6 Genius Ways to Save on Cyber Monday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-the-best-deals-of-the-year-shop-labor-day-and-skip-black-friday">For the Best Deals of the Year, Shop Labor Day and Skip Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-raincoats-in-summer-because-winter-always-comes-0">Buy raincoats in summer, because winter always comes.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping black friday discounts Holidays retail sales Tue, 24 Nov 2015 12:00:03 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1616004 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Best Buys at TJ Maxx http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-buys-at-tj-maxx <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-best-buys-at-tj-maxx" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000072725527.jpg" alt="Woman finding best buys at TJ Maxx" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Have you ever set foot in a TJ Maxx store only to be completely overwhelmed by the selection? While it's a great place to score designer brands at a low price, you'll get the absolute <em>best</em> value on these six items. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-things-that-are-always-cheaper-at-target">The 8 Things That Are Always Cheaper at Target</a>)</p> <h2>1. Designer Jeans</h2> <p>If designer jeans are your thing, you'd be smart to buy them at TJ Maxx and save close to 70% off the retail price. Brands that you can typically find include Jones New York, Jessica Simpson, Lucky, and Paris Blues. Surprisingly, many of the jeans you'll find at TJ Maxx are not last season's style and were just recently stocked in big department stores like Macy's and Nordstrom. According to website Mental Floss, high-end department stores buy jeans directly from manufacturers under what they term a &quot;buy-back clause.&quot; This stipulates that all unsold merchandise is bought-back by the clothing manufacturer, then sold to TJ Maxx at a hefty discount. The savings is then passed along to you.</p> <h2>2. Outerwear</h2> <p>TJ Maxx is a great stop when you need a new winter jacket, coat, or vest. This is because they tend to carry more name brands than other discount clothing stores like Ross and Marshalls. Outerwear brands you'll typically find include The North Face, Under Armour, Burton, U.S. Polo, and Steve Madden. While they stock outerwear all year long, they obviously have more selection in early autumn. I recommend shopping early on a Wednesday, if possible, as according to an employee, most TJ Maxx locations have their price markdowns completed by midweek. Another pro tip? Shop at the end of the season. TJ Maxx marks down items even further these times of the year.</p> <h2>3. Handbags</h2> <p>Top handbag brands that are regularly stocked include Valentina, Kenneth Cole, Michaella Barri, Saint Laurent, Perlina, and Emma Fox. You'll often find these brands at close to 75% off the original retail price. According to website Racked, TJ Maxx buyers are able to secure deals on handbags by foregoing the ability to return unsold bags to the designer. This means they'll put unsold handbags on clearance and continue to reduce them in price until they're sold-out. So if you see several of the same purse on the clearance rack, be aware that they'll probably get even cheaper within the next couple weeks. It may be worth your time, and money, to come back and buy it at the lower price.</p> <h2>4. Jewelry and Watches</h2> <p>Savings on jewelry is in the 50%&ndash;75% off range on name brands like Anne Klein, Fossil, Paz Creations, Gucci, Movado, Mia Fiore, and even Versace. Jewelry is no doubt one of the all-time popular Christmas gifts, and TJ Maxx is a great place to shop, especially for procrastinators &mdash; they receive new items right up until Christmas Eve.</p> <h2>5. Home Goods</h2> <p>If you're in the market for new kitchen, bath, or bedroom items, you'd be wise to shop at TJ Maxx and save up to 65% off name brands. A few of the designers you'll find highly discounted include Nicole Miller, All-Clad, Oneida, Cynthia Rowley, Wolfgang Puck, and Caro Home.</p> <h2>6. Shoes</h2> <p>Shoe brands like Jessica Simpson, Lucky, Keds, Nine West, Born, Adidas, Reebok, and New Balance can be found up to 70% off at TJ Maxx. Keep in mind that approximately 95% of the shoes at TJ Maxx are <a href="http://www.thebudgetbabe.com/archives/916-The-Truth-about-TJ-Maxx.html">first-run quality</a>. The other 5% are typically irregular and have a small flaw somewhere. Because of this, I always recommend trying on shoes and looking them over really well before purchasing.</p> <h2>7. Food and Coffee</h2> <p>Food, coffee, and other specialty goodies are often over-looked at TJ Maxx, yet provide some great values. According to <a href="http://www.redbookmag.com/life/money-career/features/a38894/tj-maxx-shopping-hacks-save-money-time/">Redbook's Kayla Keegan</a>, you should shop for deals on &quot;gift baskets, imported olive oils, handmade pastas, stainless steel cooking gadgets, and way more.&quot; She also points out that the assortment and selection gets much better around the holidays, and makes for a great place to shop for discounted gifts for the food lover in your life.</p> <p><em>What items do you consistently find the best deals on at TJ Maxx?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-buys-at-tj-maxx">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-you-shouldnt-order-on-amazon">5 Things You Shouldn&#039;t Order on Amazon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-raincoats-in-summer-because-winter-always-comes-0">Buy raincoats in summer, because winter always comes.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-at-the-dollar-store-and-10-you-should">10 Things You Should Never Buy at the Dollar Store (and 10 You Should)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bargains best values brand name designers discounts sales tj maxx Thu, 19 Nov 2015 17:05:27 +0000 Kyle James 1613394 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Surprising Ways to Maximize Your Savings at Home Depot http://www.wisebread.com/6-surprising-ways-to-maximize-your-savings-at-home-depot <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-surprising-ways-to-maximize-your-savings-at-home-depot" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/the_home_depot_000016789311.jpg" alt="Learning surprising ways to maximize savings at home depot" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's no arguing the fact that Home Depot can be a great place to save money on hardware and building supplies. And having worked at Home Depot fairly recently, I have the inside scoop on how to best take advantage of the savings opportunities. Here are a few tips to maximize your savings. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ikea-shopping-tricks">8 IKEA Shopping Tricks</a>)</p> <h2>1. Don't Ignore the Cents in the Price</h2> <p>I recently had a former Home Depot employee, who used to perform all of the price changes in his store, inform me of how their pricing system works. Use this information to determine what items are clearance price, and if they might go even cheaper.</p> <h3>Price Ending in .06</h3> <p>If you see an item with an ending price of .06, you know it's a clearance item. These price stickers will typically be printed on a yellow tag. The &quot;6&quot; means that after six weeks, if the item has not sold-out, the price will be lowered again. Look for a date printed on the price tag, as that indicates the date the tag was printed. If the date is close to six weeks ago, you know the item is about to get marked down again. If they still have plenty in stock, it's worth waiting in order to get it cheaper in the near future.</p> <h3>Price Ending in .03</h3> <p>Any price ending in .03 is a clearance item that has been marked down from .06. This means that after three weeks, the item will be removed from the store if not sold-out. Typically, when you see an item ending in .03, printed on a yellow tag, it's the rock-bottom price and your best opportunity for a deal. Again, examine the date on the price tag to determine how close the item is to being liquidated.</p> <h2>2. Negotiate the Price on Damaged Stuff</h2> <p>The Home Depot is notorious for slashing the price on any visible imperfections or damage on either the product's packaging, or the item itself. When I worked in the warehouse, we were actually given the authority to knock 15% off the price on damaged products without any managerial approval required. Use this insider information to your advantage, and look for items that have cosmetic damage. Then, ask an associate if a discount is available.</p> <p>Your chances of success increase greatly if you're polite and ask in a conversational tone. Also, if the item is the last one on the shelf, and shows even the slightest evidence of damage or wear, your success rate will increase substantially as employees want to clear it out of the store, since they know they'll have trouble selling it at full price. As a general rule of thumb, I like to start by asking for a 25% discount, knowing that I will probably settle for 15% off.</p> <h2>3. Score a Deal on Products Wrongly Stocked</h2> <p>This tip is not for everyone, but I saw it work several times during my employment at Home Depot. The average store stocks thousands of products, and every once in a while, a product is put back in the wrong spot or simply mis-stocked by the overnight crew. If you notice that a product is incorrectly stocked, and has a lower shelf price tag then it should, you can politely ask for the lower price.</p> <p>According to Consumer Reports, the store does not have to <a href="http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/shopping/december-2009/the-savvy-shopper/know-your-consumer-rights/the-savvy-shopper-consumer-rights.htm">honor the lower price</a>, but in many cases, Home Depot will give you the lower price if the price difference is not outrageous. I saw this work for a customer that found a $25 Purdy paint brush stocked with the $5 cheap brushes. The assistant manager immediately gave him the $20 discount rather than argue with the man and create a scene.</p> <h2>4. Buy &quot;Oops&quot; Paint for Cheap</h2> <p>The next time you need to paint a room, or even an entire house, always check the &quot;oops&quot; paint rack in the Home Depot paint department. You'll find it next to the paint mixing station and it's where they sell highly discounted paint that was either mistinted by the paint machine, or simply not the color the customer requested. Having worked in the paint department in my younger days, I can tell you that you'll find some amazing hidden gems. This is especially true if you're not picky about paint color and simply looking for something neutral. Examples include one-gallon cans of Behr paint for $5&ndash;$8, and five-gallon buckets of paint, which typically sell for $125, can often be had for under $50.</p> <p>A word of caution: Always ask to see the actual paint color, and never trust the color swatch on top of the can. To foil customers trying to scam the system by intentionally rejecting a color so they can come back and buy it from the &quot;oops&quot; rack, employees will sometimes add bright colors to the cans and change the color intentionally. Make sure the color you think you're getting is the actual color.</p> <h2>5. Buy Paint on a Holiday Weekend</h2> <p>Sticking with the paint theme, another insider tip I learned while working in the paint department involves the rare days of the year when paint actually goes on sale. The best days of the year to buy paint are on holiday weekends when the weather is warm. These include Memorial Day weekend, Fourth of July, and Labor Day weekend. The discount is usually a $5 rebate on one-gallon cans and a $25 rebate on five-gallon buckets. These holiday sales are typically good for both major brands of paint (Behr and Glidden) that Home Depot stocks. So, if you're thinking of doing a large painting project in the near future, it may very well be worth the money to wait, and buy, on one of these sale weekends.</p> <h2>6. Buy a Gift Card for Less Than Face Value</h2> <p>If you have a large remodel or DIY project in your future plans, you should definitely consider buying a discounted Home Depot gift card and easily save 7%&ndash;10% off your purchases. This is done by taking advantage of websites like&nbsp;<a href="http://www.giftcardgranny.com/store/home-depot/">Gift Card Granny</a> and&nbsp;<a href="https://www.raise.com/buy-home-depot-gift-cards">Raise</a>, which sell unwanted gift cards at less than face value. Typically, the higher the gift card balance, the larger the discount. For example, right now you can buy a $100 Home Depot gift card on Gift Card Granny for $90 with free delivery.</p> <p>By knowing some of the inner-workings of Home Depot, you can definitely learn to save money &mdash; money that can easily be used to make your next DIY or home remodel project a little more affordable. Whether it's knowing how they price clearance items, or how willing they might be to negotiate the price of an item, it's all information you can use to become a smarter consumer.</p> <p><em>How do you maximize your savings when shopping at Home Depot?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-surprising-ways-to-maximize-your-savings-at-home-depot">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-coupon-rules-that-stores-let-you-break">4 Coupon Rules That Stores Let You Break</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-genius-ways-to-save-on-cyber-monday">6 Genius Ways to Save on Cyber Monday</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping discounts gift cards Home Depot home improvement negotiating price tags sales Fri, 13 Nov 2015 09:15:50 +0000 Kyle James 1593639 at http://www.wisebread.com Savor Your Trip and Save Big With These 5 Slow Travel Tips http://www.wisebread.com/savor-your-trip-and-save-big-with-these-5-slow-travel-tips <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/savor-your-trip-and-save-big-with-these-5-slow-travel-tips" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_traveling_london_000022997963=.jpg" alt="Woman savoring her trip and saving big with slow travel tips" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I've been on the road over five years in total and in that time I've seen 45 countries. This may sound like a lot of places to see, but it averages around six weeks per country. And that slower travel rate has served me well.</p> <p>In my experience, by staying put and traveling slower, I've not only formed a better connection and understanding of the places that I visit, but I've also saved a lot of money along the way. Here's how.</p> <h2>1. Accommodation</h2> <p>Where you'll stay is one of your biggest travel expenses &mdash; and a great place to look for savings.</p> <h3>Long-Stay Discounts</h3> <p>If you know you're going to be staying at the same hotel for more than a couple nights, you can ask for a long-stay discount. I've had hotels offer many free nights just by asking!</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-credit-cards-for-hotel-deals-and-rewards">Best Credit Cards for Hotel Deals and Rewards</a></p> <h3>Vacation Rentals</h3> <p>Whenever you're booking a hotel or resort for a two-week or longer stay, you're spending a lot more money than you need to (even if you get a discount). If you decide to stay in one place for two weeks or more, you may just find that vacation rentals will give you much more bang for your buck.</p> <h3>Local Apartment Rentals</h3> <p>Vacation rentals are cheaper than hotels, but if you stay in one place for two months or more, you can save even more money by renting a local apartment. Once you start getting into local rentals and out of the vacation rental space, you can find some amazing deals. Vacation rentals are generally reserved for short stays (two weeks to two months) and are often owned by expats, meaning they are more expensive than regular apartments.</p> <p>On my recent two and a half month trip to Mexico, I paid $50 per night for a small room with a double bed at a hostel. That's $1,500 per month if I had stayed for 30 days! Luckily I only stayed for a couple of nights while searching for an apartment. Vacation rentals were charging at least $1,000 per month, but within three days of looking around I had found a lovely, Mexican-style, two bedroom, two-level local apartment with a large kitchen and dining room for just $400 per month! I landed this price because I was staying &quot;long-term.&quot;</p> <h3>House Sitting</h3> <p>Longer stays in each place will also give you the ability to easily find house sitting jobs. It's not easy to line up one-to-three night house sitting gigs while you're moving around a country quickly, but if you plan to stay in one town for a couple of weeks, you may be able to find a house sitting job and get free accommodation.</p> <h2>2. Transport</h2> <p>Your transportation costs can add up quickly, so be smart about how you choose to get around.</p> <h3>Car Rental</h3> <p>It's no secret that the longer you rent a car, the less you pay. A few years ago, I rented a car for five weeks in South Africa and it only costed me $20 per day, including all insurance! All major car rental companies will offer significant savings when booking a car for a month or more.</p> <p>If you're traveling to a new country every week, you won't be able to take a long-term rental because most car rental companies don't want you to cross borders with their cars. Drive around one country for a few weeks or months and watch the savings add up.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-does-car-rental-insurance-really-cover-on-your-credit-card">What Does Car Rental Insurance Cover on Your Credit Card</a></p> <h3>Public Transport</h3> <p>You won't actually get a discount on public transport tickets by traveling slower, but you'll definitely be buying less bus, plane, and train tickets. Many buses and trains cost around $5 per hour or more depending on where in the world you are ($1 per hour in Asia). These costs quickly add up if you're taking a seven-hour bus ride every two days. That's $525 a month!</p> <h2>3. Tours</h2> <p>You don't need to spend all your dough in order to explore your chosen destination.</p> <h3>Time to Shop Around</h3> <p>I can't count how many times I arrived in a city in the afternoon, booked a tour that evening, and left on an excursion the next morning. There's nothing wrong with this kind of speedy shopping, except when you return to town and find the same tour for half the price at another agency! Traveling slower will give you time to shop around and find the best deals on tours.</p> <h3>Spread Out Your Sight Seeing</h3> <p>Taking a tour every day and trying to see everything in a short visit can be expensive. If you give yourself a bit more time, you can spend time doing things that don't cost money, like an independent walking tour or a relaxing beach day.</p> <h3>Taking Advantage of Free Days</h3> <p>Many museums, galleries, and historical sites around the world have special days each week when entrances are either discounted, or completely free. By staying in a city longer, you'll have a better chance of being able to take advantage of these days to save money.</p> <h2>4. Food</h2> <p>Food is a major part of the fun when it comes to traveling, but don't spend all your money on one meal!</p> <h3>More Time to Find the Local Joints</h3> <p>Sometimes it takes some searching to find the best, cheap restaurants in a city. The more time you spend in each place, the more time you'll have to explore and find your favorite hole-in-the wall restaurants with the most delicious food and the best prices.</p> <h3>Discount Days and Festivals</h3> <p>Just like museums and galleries, restaurants almost always have special discounts on different days of the week. If you are traveling quickly, you may miss these days, or not even find out about them. Festivals are also on fixed dates and so you'd have to get lucky to catch one if you're moving from place to place every other day. Stay in one town for a month and you're likely to witness some sort of festival or event that's offering free food and free entertainment!</p> <h3>Cooking in Apartment Kitchens</h3> <p>This is one of the best ways to save money while traveling and it goes with the first tips in this article about renting an apartment instead of booking a hotel. When you have a kitchen, you'll be able to buy your own groceries and cook for yourself. A cheap breakfast in a restaurant may cost upwards of $10 (depending on where you're traveling), while a similar breakfast cooked at home won't likely break a dollar.</p> <h2>5. Visas</h2> <p>More border crossings means more transportation costs, and of course, more entrance visas. Depending on what part of the world you're exploring, visas can range from free, to $150 per entrance. When I was traveling in Central Asia for three months in 2013, I spent over $300 in entrance visas and invitation letters alone because I was moving to a new country every two weeks. This is an extreme case because of the heavy bureaucracy and high cost of visas in this area, but visa costs add up no matter where you're traveling. Stay in one country longer and avoid getting charged (and paying border guard bribes) so often.</p> <h3>Slow and Steady&hellip;</h3> <p>Travelers often like to pack multiple cities in one trip to see as many places as possible, but not only can you save money by staying in one place, the experience of living in a foreign place longer than a few days can be just as exciting. See our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">favorite travel rewards credit cards</a> that will help you get to your dream vacation sooner!</p> <p><em>Are you a slow traveler? Where have you been? Where are you going?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/savor-your-trip-and-save-big-with-these-5-slow-travel-tips">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-little-words-that-will-get-you-the-best-price-every-time">10 Little Words That Will Get You the Best Price, Every Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-sibling-discounts-that-can-save-you-big">6 Sibling Discounts That Can Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-groupon-getaways-a-good-idea">Are Groupon Getaways a Good Idea?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lower-your-credit-card-interest-rate-and-reduce-your-phone-bill-immediately-and-easily">Lower Your Credit Card Interest Rate and Reduce Your Phone Bill, Immediately and Easily</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living backpacking discounts hostel travel travel hacks vacation rentals Mon, 12 Oct 2015 11:00:40 +0000 Nick Wharton 1586202 at http://www.wisebread.com