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BBB Tip of the Week: Preparing for holiday deals

Sun., Nov. 24, 2013

As we get closer to the holidays, shoppers are preparing to get the most for their dollar. For anyone braving the crowds for super deals on Black Friday, the Better Business Bureau offers the following tips.

• Be prepared for the busiest shopping day of the year; save all coupons and offers, and take them with you when shopping.

• Sign up for alerts with your favorite stores ahead of time to receive special deals and offers.

Other useful tips include:

• Research retailers online at, especially those you haven’t purchased from before.

• Read offers carefully. Vague or misleading descriptions may indicate a low-quality item.

• Check to see if special return or exchange policies apply to sale items.

• Ask for clarification on anything that is unclear and ask about returns policies while shopping.

• If shipping from the store is available, be sure to ask about the cost and transit time. Many retailers will offer additional savings as incentive for opening and using a store credit card for purchases. Before signing up, check the interest rates and fees.

• Watch the register closely. If you are expecting a discount that isn’t applied at the register, catch it right away. You may decide not to purchase, rather than deal with a return later.

• Holiday kiosks and other temporary retailers can offer unique and local goods. Ask for their return policies, especially since they are in a temporary location . When in doubt, buy from stores you trust.

• Avoid connecting to unsecured Wi-Fi with your mobile device while shopping. Data plans can be expensive, but identity theft from hackers trolling for unsecure personal information can be much more costly.

For more tips, visit the BBB at or call 509-455-4200.

Erin T. Dodge, BBB editor

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