Tag Archives: holiday

Return policies: some naughty, some nice

shoppingHave you started your holiday shopping yet? When deciding what to buy, also consider where to buy. Some return policies are more generous than others.

Kohl’s has a very generous return policy. It’s called “Hassle Free Returns” and is quite hassle free. The policy states, “You can return any item, anytime, for a full refund with a receipt. No receipt? No problem. You’ll get a Merchandise Credit good toward anything in the store or online. At Kohl’s, hassle-free is more than a policy. It’s a promise.”

That’s an amazing policy in this day and age where stores are cracking down on returns. Part of it is hte cost to the retailer and risk of fraud. I also think they’re trying to eliminate people like me. People who change their mind. I’ve changed some of hte stores I shop because of their poor return policies that clearly burn a busy consumer.

I’ll admit I buy a lot and return a lot. I don’t like to shop, so I’m on a mission when I hit the stores. Sometimes I buy something and later think twice about it once I get it home and have a clearer mind. I’ve experiecned first hand the need to get back to the store ASAP to return it or I’m out of luck.

I think Dillard’s has one of the tougher return polcieis for a department store. You need to have the tags attached, which I’m fine with, and the item must be returned within thirty days of purchase. I’m used to three months at other department stores and this return policy burned me pretty good this summer.

I bought a jacket, but ended up returning it because it was linen and I was worried it would be a wrinkled mess by the end of the day. I really liked the color yellow, and looked for another one that wasn’t linen. I found one with the help of an associate. We had to order it to get the right size, and when it arrived I wasn’t sold. It seemed big and wasn’t cut the way I hoped. I got busy with a million other things planning our wedding and kept meaning to take it back, but kept forgetting.

It’s my fault. I should have made it a bigger priority, but again I’m so used to a three month return policy at other department stores. I waited and finally found some time to get it returned after our wedding in August. That’s when I learned about Dillard’s 30 day return policy. I was shocked. Now, I’m stuck with an expensive jacket that I’ll probably never wear. What a costly mistake.

Just pay attention this holiday especially if you are buying for a woman because woman’s sizes are all over the map. There is no consistency.

J.Crew won’t let you return some sale items even within 30 days and with a receipt. I’m not talking about super big discounts. All sales were final at a recent 30% off sale I shopped. There were signs near the clothing alerting shoppers to this caveat, which I appreciated.

Forever 21 won’t return jewlery. All sales are final. The cashier told me at the register, and it certainly piqued my curiosity when the woman asked if I was familiar with the return policy? Again, at least it’s brought to the shoppers attention.

Some stores even limit the number of returns you can make each year.

For the holidays, many stores have an extended return policy through mid or late January.

Returns are not that big of a deal for some items. It seems I’m returning clothing most as I change my mind later. Everything looks good in the store. If you’re going out on a limb with a gift or buying clothing, consider the store’s return policy.

Tuesday dedicated to charitable giving and green gifts

We’ve spent money for days shopping for those on our holiday wish list and perhaps ourselves as well. Now, it’s time to give back to our communities on “Giving Tuesday.” The holidays are about self-reflection and giving thanks for what you have and giving back to others. There are simple steps you can take to make sure your money is well spent.

If you’re not into giving back to others, how about giving a gift that is kind to the environment? Tuesday is also Green Tuesday, a day to promote green gift buying.

1. See how independent groups rank the charity
Charity Navigator – star system
Charity Guide from the Better Business Bureau

Continue reading

Sorting through all the Black Friday ads

GottaDeal Black Friday savings chart

All the ads have leaked over the last few weeks, and this year some retailers are posting their own ads online so you’ll go their site rather than the sites that leak them. Keeping all the discounts straight can get confusing. If you’re on the hunt for something specific, check out the savings chart on GottaDeal.The deal saving site breaks down the discounts into categories. For example, if you’re interested in a new TV, you select TV from the dropdown box. Then, you’ll see a listing of all the brands and deals. Continue reading

Free Shipping Day is Friday

If you haven’t finished your holiday shopping, why not wait a little longer and save on shipping. Friday, December 16th, is Free Shipping Day. More than 2,000 merchants will offer free shipping and guarantee delivery by Christmas Eve.

During the holidays, whether you buy on the designated Free Shipping Day, or when it’s convenient for you — shipping is something you should try to avoid. If one store won’t offer it to you, go to one that will. I’ve bought some gifts valued at $30 and $75 this holiday, and haven’t paid for shipping yet.

I always google the company I’m using to make a purchase and the words “free shipping” and “promotional code” to find more ways to save money. There are often promotional codes that will take 10-20% off your order floating around on the Internet. There are entire websites, like Free Shipping, that give you the inside scoop on the promotional codes you need to enter at checkout for free shipping.

You can also earn money to do your holiday shopping online. Simply, sign up for an account through Ebates. When it’s time to shop, find the store through Ebates and if they participate in the cash back program you’ll earn 5-20% cash back on your order. I’m an infrequent shopper and this year I got a check for more than $50 since I earned a percentage back everytime I shopped.

Click here to see if your favorite retailer is participating in free shipping day

Target launches Cyber Monday sale in September

It’s still September, but the rush is on to grab shoppers early. Target launched Cyber Monday on the last Monday in September. There even appear to be deals that last all week long under the Cyber Week categories on the left hand side of the page.

So, what can you get? The Cyber Week deals I looked at were $20-30 off the regular retail price. The Cyber Monday sales were better, but you still need to know your prices.

Target has the 64GB iPad on sale for $499.99.  Through PriceGrabber, I found it for almost the same price ($499.95) at B&H. It’s still a good deal, but check a price comparison site like PriceGrabber or Shopzilla to make sure before you click buy.

PriceGrabber also has a tab that shows you the history of an item’s price so you can tell if it’s on the way up or down.

Tire Test Trips Up Travellers

Travellers along the Ohio Turnpike checked their oil and fluids, but nobody we talked to did a simple, five-minute, free check that could save their life!

One family was even driving on a tire that could separate and shred!

The five minute test that you need to do before you hit the road.
http://www.newsnet5.com/dpp/money/consumer/consumer_specialist/drivers-fail-our-tire-test