Forget about Black Friday. November 1 is one of the biggest shopping days for frugal shoppers with a major sweet tooth.
To help you find the best deals around town, I did the dirty work for you and scoured the shelves at seven major shops in Manhattan.
There were some hits and misses and a few rather terrifying revelations about holiday marketing in the U.S.
Here’s how they stacked up:
The Best Stores: Duane Reade & CVS
I hit up three of ubiquitous drugstore Duane Reade’s shops near Union Square and found copious amounts of sweets at each. But if you want to nab their 50-75% sales, you might wanna get moving now.
Overall, CVS is probably your best bet. The drugstore had enough giant bags of bite-sized chocolate and sugary sweets to please any kid grownup with a sweet tooth and a few bucks to burn. Most big bags of assorted candies were marked down 50%.
The Worst Stores
Walgreens: Ho, ho, holy crap! It’s Christmastime at this chain pharmacy.
Gone were the candies and costumes and in was an aisle bursting with ornaments, tinsel and stockings. I was sure that I would find another aisle for leftover Halloween junk around the corner, but a sales rep lurking nearby pointed to the giant explosion of red and green I had just emerged from.
“That’s it,” he said.
And then I died a little inside.
Whole Foods: It was a longshot, but I decided to see if Whole Foods got in the spooky spirit this Halloween. Unfortunately, unless you like organic gum drop thingies, you’re better off skipping this one.
Trader Joe’s: Too good for goodies. According to a sales rep at the Union Square shop, the store didn’t stock much in the way of Halloween treats this year. If you’re in the market for some fresh seasonal squash, however, you’re in luck!
Food Emporium: Unless you’re a crazy for candy corn, you’re gonna want to skip this overpriced grocery store. Food Emporium’s Halloween shelf was cleaned out.
Tips before you shop:
Call first. I rung up K-Mart’s location in Greenwich Village and found out its shelves had already been plundered for all the sweet deals on Halloween goods. Disappointment: averted.
Don’t be afraid to argue. I lucked out at Duane Reade and nabbed a bag of Dove’s dark chocolate bites (because that’s the kind of candy grownups eat, OK) for 50% off, all thanks to a lazy sales rep who forgot to move them from the sales bin. The cashier honored the deal when I argued.