It’s that time of year again. As soon as the utter chaos of hunting down last-minute Christmas presents comes to an end, we’re met by the even crazier end of year sales. After a hectic few weeks of festive preparations, it’s easy to take on that “feck it, I’ll treat myself” attitude, which of course isn’t always a bad thing, however, there’s fine line between nabbing some killer bargains and wasting your money on a load of impulsive buys that you’ll never need nor wear. Here are my top tips on how to successfully tackle the end of year sales, without becoming a hoarder or upsetting your bank balance (too much).
Exchange Rates & Getting Your Money’s Worth
Ever since Brexit and the crash of the Sterling earlier this year, I’ve been noticing some rather considerable price differences between the Irish and UK versions of many of my favourite online retailers. In the example above, you’re paying an extra 15% for the EXACT same coat if you buy through the Irish site instead of the UK one. Many people won’t even take notice of the differences between currencies but it makes zero sense to me, to pay over the odds when it’s so simple to change currency/region settings with the click of a mouse, so it’s something to bare in mind when shopping on the likes of River Island, ASOS and Topshop in the coming days.
Avoid Impulse Buying
When you come across a 60% off sale, bursting at the seams with this season’s major trends, it’s far too easy to get carried away and buy everything, just because it’s reduced. Remember, something is only a bargain and worth purchasing if (a.) you’re going to wear it and (b.) you would still consider buying it at full price. My biggest piece of advice, speaking from experience, would be too head into a sale knowing what you need, and more importantly what you definitely don’t. Timeless jeans, a high quality winter coat and basic layers are always a good call, while it’s best to avoid anything too glittery or pieces that will go out of fashion before the next season even begins.
Stick To Online Shopping
As much as a slave I am to fashion, I also adore my sleep and therefore would never, ever consider queuing outside a shop at 5am for its St. Stephen’s Day sale to begin. Over the last few years, I’ve nabbed some fantastic early morning bargains from the comfort of my own bed, mug of coffee in tow, without having to brave a single queue. Check out your favourite shops’ websites in the days running up to the sales so you have an idea of what you might like to purchase when the reductions are applied and log on earlier in the morning, when there will be less online traffic slowing down the site’s engines.
At Least Try To Abide By A Budget
Yes, easier said than done, I know. It’s all well and good giving yourself a €50 limit until you fall in love with everything you lay eyes on. Try to keep a maximum figure in mind and divide it up among the amount of pieces you’re searching for. If you do exceed your budget (let’s face it, it’ll happen), make sure what you’re buying is worth the extra spend, i.e, of high quality, something timeless that you’ll get plenty of wear out of and nothing something you already own 5 similar versions of.
Don’t Be Fooled By Rock Bottom Prices
As the saying goes, if it sounds too good too be true, then it probably is. Just because a shop claims something has “80% off the full price” doesn’t mean they’re being entirely truthful. Many retailers, both here and in the UK are noted for either bumping up prices dramatically in the days before a sale or simply claiming its RRP is twice what it actually is, which usually leads to endless impulse buys that don’t live up to expectations once their tag are removed. Don’t be swayed by the low price, double it and ask yourself would you still want the item in question then – that way you can distinguish a genuine bargain from an overpriced impulse purchase.