You’ve searched high and low, storewide and online for that perfect gift for someone on your list. You’ve bought it, wrapped it, maybe even given the perfect gift, but then you see it-a lower price. It happens all the time, especially during the crazy sale cycle leading up to and after the holidays. An item you purchased for 30% off may end up being 40% off the next week, or maybe you find the same item is suddenly deeply discounted at another retailer. While a dollar or two may not make it worth fretting over when it’s an especially pricey item and the savings are significant it can feel terrible. Never fear though, I’ve got some tips and tricks to keep saving AFTER you’re done shopping. Spending just a little bit of time can lead from frustration to glee when you score that sale price after the fact.
Keep your eye on Sales:
Even if you’ve wrapped the last item on your holiday gift list, that doesn’t mean you have to stop looking for great deals or browsing sales. Keep an eye on the larger purchases you’ve recently made to see if a lower price pops up elsewhere. It doesn’t matter if the gift has already been given-you may be able to score that sale price.
Know your Return Policies:
Knowing how long you have to return an item is key. If you have 30 days to return an item you should keep an eye on prices for 30 days. Returning an item only works for unused items, and some stores have a policy that you have to have a receipt or you’ll get store credit. Keep in mind some stores like Target can look up your purchase using your credit card so if you lose a receipt you can have them look it up.
When to use this tip: When you’ve purchased an item and another store carries it for a lower price, but you can not use a price match policy. For instance I recently purchased a Sculpey clay set for a holiday gift from Michael’s with a coupon. It came to $17.99. While shopping in A.C.Moore I saw the same set marked down to $14.99. I returned the set to Michael’s and saved $3.
Price Match Policies:
Price match policies vary widely. In many cases you’ll need an ad or a mobile device that shows the sale price at another retailer or online store. Some stores only take ads, will others do accept prices from places like Amazon.com. Price matching is fairly simple-you just need to take the receipt or the item you’re going to purchase to guest services or a register and explain you’d like a price match. You may need to speak to a manager or the cashier may be able to price match-it all depends on the store.
Tip: Use your polite but firm persona to get a price match. If you get pushback but are within the guidelines be firm, but nice. I’ve gotten many a discount simply by being persistent and polite.
Credit Card Price Match:
If you find a better price for an item you’ve already purchased, your credit card may refund the price difference. You’ll need a credit card that offers a price guarantee. Discover, for example, will refund the difference up to $500 if you find a lower price within 90 days of making a purchase with your Discover card. It’s their free Price Protection benefit. This Discover benefit has an annual limit of $2,500 per account.
How it works varies by credit card company. With Discover card you simply call customer service and submit your Discover card statement showing the entire original purchase price, the sales receipt, and either a copy of the dated, printed, lower-price ad, or a statement, signed by the store manager on store stationery documenting the details of the lower price of the identical item.
Tip: If you aren’t sure if a credit card offers a price match simply check their website or call customer service. If your card doesn’t consider switching to a credit card like the Discover card that does offer Price Protection.
For more ideas and tips on saving money when you shop read my Smart Holiday Shopping post.
Giveaway is closed.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Discover as part of the Discover Preferred Blogger Network. All opinions are my own.