5 Ways You’re Wasting Money This Holiday Season – And How To Rule It


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If you’re looking to part with your hard-earned cash, the holiday season is no shortage of opportunities, but there are ways to keep too much of your money from falling into the hands of Jeff Bezos or the Walton family. The lead up to winter break is littered with money-hungry traps just waiting for you to fall. If you catch yourself making any of the following unforced vacation mistakes, stop before wasting money that really doesn’t buy you anything.

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You take the Doorbuster bait

Although Black Friday made them famous, doorbusters have become a standard feature of all of the season’s many smaller sales events, which are now starting to pop up in early October. If you are in a sale that uses limited quantity products at deeply discounted prices to cause a frenzy of buyers, beware of joining the rush to get your hands on one.

“There’s always that door-to-door item that seems priced too good to be true,” said sales expert Kendrick Shope, founder of The Genuine Selling Process. “The truth is, there is a reason for this. It’s usually an item that doesn’t sell well, is plagued with problems, or doesn’t live up to its hype. The allure of making an incredible deal might be more of a headache than it’s worth in the long run.

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You don’t read the fine print

Another common mistake is to jump into a sale after taking a look at the ad.

“When this flat screen TV is advertised for $ 500 off, read the fine print,” Shope said. “Is it limited to the first 20 customers to walk through the door? Is it only a special offer from 4 a.m. to 5 a.m.? There are big savings on Black Friday and throughout the holiday season, but the really big discounts are usually more limited than people realize. ”

The importance of reading the fine print also extends to the details of the store’s return policy.

“Many specially priced items for the holiday season do not have the same return policy as items purchased the rest of the year,” said Shope. “In fact, some of the top selling items may be ‘all final sales’ items or have a very limited return window. It is also very important this year that certain items like clothing or household items may have very limited return policies due to COVID. So always check back and make sure you know what you are getting into. However, always give a gift receipt when the purchase is for someone else.

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You’re not using the right shopping tools to save money

People spend hours strategizing over the holiday season, shopping around, and researching deals. They could save a lot of time and money just by using a few free tools.

“Get a barcode scanner on your smartphone and use price comparison websites,” Shope said. “Let’s say you’re at Walmart and you see a blender you want to gift someone. How do you know if you are getting the best price from all the major retailers? Install an app that scans the barcode and shows you the price at all other retailers. There are many apps you can download, such as RedLaser, ShopSavvy, and Flipp. Also, don’t forget about internet price comparison sites like PriceGrabber.com.

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You don’t stay in the loop

You can save money throughout the season, not just when you buy gifts, but also on things like ornaments, decorations, food, and supplies, by asking your favorite vendors to stand by. current with their constantly evolving offers.

“Make sure you follow your favorite retailers on social media and that you’ve signed up for email alerts,” Shope said. “These stores are always looking to grow their audience and increase their fan base. In return, some of them will let you know about secret sales going on or they might extend special coupon codes that no one else will know about except their social media followers and those who choose to receive. emails. This year, Facebook and Twitter are still popular, and of course, don’t forget Instagram.

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You make yourself a target

Finally, keep in mind that the winter holidays are the busy season not only for retailers and shoppers, but also for criminals, especially those who are waiting for you to make a mistake online.

“Shop safely,” said Shope. “It’s donation season, but cybercriminals are in hiding and just waiting to enter your credit card information. When shopping online, make sure you are connected to a secure Wi-Fi connection. Also, make sure that the website address begins with “https: //” instead of the standard “http: //”. Finally, cybercriminals have created clone websites of the originals that look identical but have only one letter in the address. Check the website address to make sure you are where you want to be. The bottom line: be careful when shopping online.

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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 5 Ways To Waste Money During The Holidays – And How To Control It


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