We all like to save money whenever we can.
And while there are tons of ways to save money on practically anything, I have one tip that many of you may not have ever heard of.
Let’s talk about a hypothetical situation for a moment:
You’re in your favorite department store, and you see a pair of pants that you really like.
You know this brand is normally around $80 dollars, but you check the price anyway.
You’re in luck!
They’ve been marked down to $15.
However, they aren’t in your size.
You go and ask the clerk about this, and they tell you to buy the pants in your size from the store’s website, then bring it in and they’ll refund the difference.
Does this sound far-fetched?
In fact, this type of situation is very real and it happens all the time. Who knows, by the time you get back to the store to receive your rebate, the pants may have dropped in price even farther, and you might get a bigger refund.
Let’s examine how this works so you can do this in real life:
Communicate and be Friendly!
The most important part of this trick is that the store you buy from will actually let you return something from an online purchase for an in-store price match.
To make sure you can do it, the best option is just to be open about your intention and just ask an employee.
If you don’t know how to approach them about it, just ask them, “Would you honor this price for an online purchase?”
The business wants you to buy things at a discount more than it wants you to shop somewhere else, so the chances are pretty good that they won’t mind you shopping around this way. After all, they are a business, and your repeated visits are more than worth it to them.
Keep an Eye Out for Sales, Bargains, and Clearance
If you want to use this method, you should make a beeline for the clearance rack as soon as you enter the store.
You’re looking for items that are marked down as much as possible.
Ideally, they will be almost out of stock, and they won’t have it in your size.
Almost out of stock means they might mark the price down, and not having it in your size is your excuse to order it online (also, they probably really don’t have it in your size.)
The item needs to be listed for more online than it is in the store. This isn’t too unusual since the actual store has to cut prices to move inventory, but the website doesn’t.
Return & Save
Once you’ve chosen the item you can snag a deal on, and you’ve made sure that you can return it for the purchase price, or get a refund on the difference, the only thing left to do is execute.
Buy your clothes, get to the store, and get your money back!
Congratulations, you just snagged a really good deal by shopping smart.
The easiest way to choose the item you want to do this with is to use the store’s smartphone app (this requires a smartphone, obviously.)
Almost every major clothing retailer has a smartphone app. Most of these apps are available on iOS and Android, but there are a few that are available on iOS only.
Have this app open when you go in to browse their wares, and you can check the in-store prices against the online prices right then and there.
Though it requires a little extra work, this is easily the best way to identify the major deals.
Keep in mind that this is not exclusive to clothes, you can exploit this when shopping for electronics, toys, and many other items, although you may have to rework the strategy a little.
Remember, while this is an awesome trick for getting good deals on the clothes you want, it isn’t something you should do all the time.
You are exploiting a loophole, after all– better not to abuse the trick.
If you are going to do this often, at least cycle the stores you do it at, or they might start to get upset that you’re playing the system so well!
The absolute best time to do this is the holiday season, because there are bound to be some serious differences between online and in-store prices.
If you are careful with how you make your purchases, you could end up saving hundreds in clothing costs. And nothing feels better than good clothes that you got by shopping smart!