Try bargain hunting here
Published 12:59 am Wednesday, November 24, 2004
We all know them, the bargain shoppers. They're the ones who always seem to get that great deal no matter the time of year. They get the unusual gift, or that rare item, and they do it at prices that can make your head swim.
Those bargain shoppers usually have three qualities that make them so good at shopping. They have patience, and they don't assume that the one store claiming the lowest prices actually has the lowest prices. Finally, they are open to seeing what's out there, and what might be a good, or even better substitute for what they were originally seeking.
We bring all this up because the Christmas shopping season is upon us. On Friday, millions of shoppers across this country will get up early and flock to the mega-malls and the mega-marts, jostling and jockeying for parking spaces, that special early-bird advertised price, and jostling elbow to elbow with fellow, often cranky shoppers, and then wait in line for that overhwelmed checkout person to take our money.
Sure, the mega-mall and the mega-marts down the road will have some hard to beat prices. Sure, they will have some things you can't get locally.
But you'd be surprised what you can find in your own backyard if you take the bargain-hunter's credo. Be open to what's out there. Why drive long cross-country if you can go around the corner? It never hurts to at least look.
Secondly, never assume you can only find it cheaper down the road. One of the great things about capitalism, is that prices usually fall and when companies reach an economy of scale to sell to the mega-marts, they can also sell cheaply to smaller stores.
Third, have a little patience. This one should be the easiest. It only takes a little while to do a little shopping around town compared to the hours you'll spend on the road.
So take a moment to be like that great bargain-shopper you know. You might be surprised how far your Christmas dollars can go when they're so close to home.
Remember, that dollar you spend here, stays here.