The upcoming Black Friday weekend will undoubtedly be a huge shopping time. Nearly half of the country will be shopping – 152 million people, compared to 138 million last year, according to the National Retail Federation.
With just two days until Black Friday (and even less than that if you plan to shop at stores on the night of Thanksgiving), we’ve compiled some last minute tips before you head to the stores.
2. Discounted Gift Cards: You can purchase a $100 gift card to various stores for only $80, by visiting sites like PlasticJungle.com, which is now selling a $130 gift card at JC Penney for $110 – that’s a 15% savings. The website will mail you the gift card – always free shipping.
3. Every Day is Black Friday: There will be incredible sales this weekend but it won’t stop there. Retailers will be offering discounts all throughout December too – in an effort to lure in shoppers all holiday season – so don’t feel pressured to do all of your shopping this weekend.
[Check out HelpSaveMyDollars.com’s Expense Calculator to track your expenses]
4. Stay Away From Layaway Plans: Best Buy, Toys R Us, Sears, Walmart and Kmart will allow consumers to sign a layaway contract, where they can lock in a price of an item now and make monthly/weekly payments on the gift for the next 8 weeks. Layaway plans are a waste of time! Chances are, the price you lock in now will be further discounted as we get closer to Christmas. Plus, there are service (typically $5) and cancellation fees (about $10).
5. Chances Are, You’ll Get the Best Price: Walmart has a new program called, “Christmas Price Guarantee.” If you purchase an item at Walmart, and then find that another store sells that item for less, Walmart will give you a gift card of the price difference.
And for those you would rather shop online and skip the lines at the store, here are a few pointers for saving money on Cyber Monday – that’s the Monday after Thanksgiving – considered the busiest online shopping day of the year.
1. Free Online Shipping: Over 90% of retailers say they will offer free shipping this year (National Retail Federation). No one should be paying for shipping this holiday season! For free shipping coupon codes, head to Free ShippingCoupons.com or FreeShipping.org – type in the name of the store and the site will give you codes for free shipping.
2. Track Your Shipments: If you’re making dozens of online purchases, it can be difficult to keep track of when each package will arrive at your doorstep. The “Slice” iPhone app, which launched earlier last week, automatically tracks your shipments. It’s linked to your Gmail or Yahoo email and it will grab the data from the digital receipt that the online retailer (like Amazon) sends to you and the app will tell you when each package will arrive. There’s no need to enter in a tracking number.
3. Coupons from Twitter: Major retailers are posting exclusive coupons on Twitter. It can be difficult to find deals with the millions of tweets posted every day. CheapTweet.com aggregates the best deals from Twitter (over 25 million of them) and puts them onto one convenient site. You can search for coupons/deals from Twitter by category (computers, clothing, shoes, restaurants, etc). You don’t even need to be on Twitter to use the site!
Last year, TJ Maxx tweeted about an iPad they were selling for $100 off – expect to see more deals posted on social media.
[As originally posted on HelpSaveMyDollars.com]