Black Friday/Cyber Monday Tips
At Community Financial we hate to see your money go to waste, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday on the horizon, it’s more important than ever to make sure that your purchases are responsible and safe. From misleading advertisements to scams and fraud, there are plenty of ways your Black Friday shopping can go wrong. Before you brave the crowds (or the internet), we’ve put together a list of tips to help you score deals without putting your account in danger.
Know What to Get and What to Skip
One of the best ways to get the best deals during the holidays is to know what to get and what to skip. Black Friday is notorious for great prices on small home appliances, electronics, travel deals, video games, and doorbuster sales. However, it may surprise you that some other items on your list should be a skip during Black Friday/Cyber Monday. Winter clothing, bedding, fitness equipment, toys, jewelry, and large home appliances don’t have the same kind of markdowns as the previously aforementioned items. For winter clothes and bedding, hold off until January or late winter to get the best deals. For larger purchases like fitness gear, dishwashers, and diamond rings, hold off until after the holidays. “New Years Resolutions” deals can slash these prices even further than what you’d get during Black Friday.
Don’t Get Caught Up in the Whirlwind
One of the biggest mistakes you can make during this Buyer’s Weekend is getting caught up in the hype of sales marketing. Keywords and phrases like “Limited Quantities” and “Great Deals” in bright red letters can make shoppers think they’re getting a better deal than they really are when in actuality the stores are just using smart marketing tactics. For instance, the big screen TV on sale for 80% might boast “Limited Quantities” to get you in the door when there are really just two in stock at your local store. On the other hand, some stores throw full-price items into their “Black Friday” circulars so you’ll assume it’s being offered at a discount. Outsmart these ploys by checking prices before you buy and checking with stores to find out quantities ahead of time.
Skip Full Price “With a Store Gift Card” Items
Another tactic stores utilize is offering an item at full price but offering a $100 store gift card as a rebate. This may seem like a good deal in the moment, but if you’re not a regular customer of that store, you could end up spending your gift card on things you don’t need just to feel like you’re getting the most out of the deal. Also, these items can typically be found at a discount (without the need for a store gift card) at other retailers. Do your research!
When shopping in store or online, it’s important to make sure you’re protecting your card, account, and person from fraudulent activity. Community Financial makes credit card fraud protection easy with Fraud Text Alerts, Quick Launch Text Alerts, and Mastercard’s Zero Liability Program. By signing up for Fraud Text Alerts, you’ll receive text messages if a suspicious transaction is identified on your Community Financial Mastercard®. Quick Launch Text Alerts allow you to set up custom alerts for transaction types and dollar amounts, giving you even more control over your fraud protection. Check out cfcu.org/CardFraud and cfcu.org/IdentityTheft for more information about keeping your money and accounts safe while you shop.
Your Turn: What tips do you have for scoring the best deals during Black Friday/Cyber Monday while keeping your cards and accounts safe? Tell us about it in the comments!
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