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Christmas shopping & the economy
Old 12-11-2008, 11:59 AM   #1
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Christmas shopping & the economy

I've never seen such bargains out there . We got discounts on everything including our Christmas tree .Lots of merchants sent out discount coupons and several local area restaurants are lowering their prices plus most online merchants offered free shipping . This year has been great on my budget . Has anybody else scored great bargains ?
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:21 PM   #2
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I may just send Amazon.com gift cards and let the recipients enjoy the free shipping, no taxes. I needed clothes in 2001 and got incredible deals at the end of that year. Don't need anything this year so will pass on the nice coupons. I'm afraid this year might be worse, mixed feelings.:confused:
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:27 PM   #3
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Yes, I scored really good stuff this year.

New bedding (down comforter + feather bed) at Macy's, really good quality, 50+% off plus free shipping.
I got 40% off on a nice watch on Amazon.
I got 50% off on a Columbia sweater and fleece at my local department store.

I have received discount coupons from the sunglass hut, my local grocery store, PF Chang, and a ton of online retailers.
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:35 PM   #4
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a huge bargain - a few weeks before turkey day, a good quality Craftsman 40" tool chest/cabinet combo and 260 piece mechanic's tool set was on sale online at sears. we jumped all over that deal. the very same items are now marked right back up again for the xmas season.
our gift list is very short for each other - we blew our total gift budget and then some on the above.
i did the rest of my shopping at amazon, wally world, and 2 local private stores.
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Old 12-11-2008, 03:48 PM   #5
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Victoria's Secret sent me a $20.00 off coupon so I scored four nightshirts for my DIL's for $40.00 . I also got buy one get one free toys at K mart . Target had great prices on toys so I completed my toy shopping way under budget . Now I just have to wrap everything .
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Old 12-11-2008, 03:50 PM   #6
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Macy's had winter coats for 60% off last Saturday. Real nice coats. I thought they were a bargain. Got a camcorder for an excellent price from Beach Camera in NJ.
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Old 12-11-2008, 04:08 PM   #7
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Thanks to advice from a forum member, I bought a new mac at the apple store at a price equal to that of an online reseller. Also bought DW earrings at a negotiated price, plus my 30% off coupon, plus then negotiated that the store pay the tax.
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Old 12-11-2008, 06:34 PM   #8
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I got 40% off on a nice watch on Amazon.
I got 40% off of a nice watch for my Mom at Zales.

My 2 favorite kinds of chocolate are: #1 - Free.....and #2 - Cheap. So I went to a Russell Stovers outlet store yesterday with a 10% off coupon and bought the "reduced" & "clearance" items...with the additional 10% off! That was a pretty cheap trip. Then I went to a Christmas party this afternoon with the Union retirees, and received 2 nice boxes (already wrapped) of chocolates......Free....all ready to be re-gifted

While on our Christmas trip to San Antonio this past week, I took my Mom to their Botanical Gardens......$1 each to get there on the public transit (including the transfer for the return trip).....Being a member of the American Horticultural Society, I got in for FREE....and I got her in at a reduced rate.....Total cost for the afternoon at the Gardens = $7....a nice cheap Christmas present.
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Old 12-12-2008, 06:49 AM   #9
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Glad you guys are getting some bargains!

I only had limited shopping time in the US on my recent Thanksgiving trip (I love coming back the Friday after since few people are traveling). I went to the LinensNThings liquidation but didn't see any enormous bargains (most stuff only 20% off at that point). I did get a nice knife-honing steel for about $20.

I usually pick up some cotton jersey type Ts and pants at Target but the merch. this year was HORRENdous. Really really bottom-of-the-barrel stuff in the thinnest and sleaziest of polyester, etc. I mean you could FEEL a sort of oily pollution on the items and the colors were craptastic salmon-tending-to-grey and virulent green. The cuts of the clothing, too, screamed bottom-market Chinese; it looked like the marketers and buyers had all been fired or had just given up entirely on any standards whatsoever. I didn't see ANYone buying clothing there at all but it was jam-packed with just tons and tons of nasty "garments" that I doubt will move at even half-price. I wouldn't be surprised if the stock gets officially or unofficially incinerated as it would cost more to ship the stuff back to China or liquidate elsewhere than it's inherently worth. (Maybe it could power some kind of small garbage->electricity incinerator? With all the petroleum in the fabric it could return some value that way?)

As someone who had up 'til now shopped there with reasonable success (I'm not that finicky) it's saying something for me to have walked out with nothing -nada!

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P.S. Similar story at Marshall's and Burlington Coat Factory (dragged to both those places to look for niece/nephew snow boots)
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Old 12-12-2008, 06:51 AM   #10
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DW and I are going shopping today (something we don't do often anymore), based on what I am reading here, we're looking forward to some bargains...
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:44 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by ladelfina View Post
.

I usually pick up some cotton jersey type Ts and pants at Target but the merch. this year was HORRENdous. Really really bottom-of-the-barrel stuff in the thinnest and sleaziest of polyester, etc. I mean you could FEEL a sort of oily pollution on the items and the colors were craptastic salmon-tending-to-grey and virulent green. The cuts of the clothing, too, screamed bottom-market Chinese; it looked like the marketers and buyers had all been fired or had just given up entirely on any standards whatsoever. I didn't see ANYone buying clothing there at all but it was jam-packed with just tons and tons of nasty "garments" that I doubt will move at even half-price. I wouldn't be surprised if the stock gets officially or unofficially incinerated as it would cost more to ship the stuff back to China or liquidate elsewhere than it's inherently worth. (Maybe it could power some kind of small garbage->electricity incinerator? With all the petroleum in the fabric it could return some value that way?)

As someone who had up 'til now shopped there with reasonable success (I'm not that finicky) it's saying something for me to have walked out with nothing -nada!

--
P.S. Similar story at Marshall's and Burlington Coat Factory (dragged to both those places to look for niece/nephew snow boots)


I occasionally buy pj's at Target but the quality has dropped so low that the only thing I buy at Target is toys . They have really had good toy bargains this year much better than Toys r us .
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Old 12-12-2008, 10:07 AM   #12
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I went to the LinensNThings liquidation but didn't see any enormous bargains (most stuff only 20% off at that point).
To a large degree, that was a farce. My understanding is that they sold almost everything to several different liquidators, at least some of which jacked up the "regular" prices before taking discounts. I saw something on the TV news that showed items that normally sold for $20 being marked up to $30 (they left the $20 tag below the $30 tag) and then shouting about 40% off. So you get it for $18 -- in reality, only 10% off.
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Old 12-12-2008, 02:15 PM   #13
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anyone who has ever worked in retail department stores knows about the "markup" and "markdown" reindeer games. i was a cashier in a well known store (initials were MW) in the hardware/paint dept, way back when. one of my regular j*bs was to take the price gun on a bi-weekly basis and do a small markup on the little plastic containers of nuts bolts screws nails washers and any kind of small to medium item. it was never done on the big stuff. that was overpriced from day one on the shelf.
this was re-done EVERY week before a holiday season. then, once the sale ads were published, people would come in droves and get 20% off what was essentially a 300% markup or worse, accumulated over several months prior.
what a racket!
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Old 12-12-2008, 11:26 PM   #14
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anyone who has ever worked in retail department stores knows about the "markup" and "markdown" reindeer games. i was a cashier in a well known store (initials were MW) in the hardware/paint dept, way back when. one of my regular j*bs was to take the price gun on a bi-weekly basis and do a small markup on the little plastic containers of nuts bolts screws nails washers and any kind of small to medium item. it was never done on the big stuff. that was overpriced from day one on the shelf.
this was re-done EVERY week before a holiday season. then, once the sale ads were published, people would come in droves and get 20% off what was essentially a 300% markup or worse, accumulated over several months prior.
what a racket!
Way way back when I was in high school I worked at a DC area dept. store chain. Once when I was tagging pants for the men's dept. I mentioned to my manager that I thought a 100% markup was pretty high. He told me it was only a 50% markup. I said it cost us $10 and we were selling it for $20, so 100%. His argument, which he never backed down on, was that if you took a $20 price down to $10 it was a 50% markdown so it must also be a 50% markup. LOL! I've always considered this retail logic.

I wish I could apply this logic to my portfolio. It would make it much easier to get back to where I was, only 33% rise instead of 65%.
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