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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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BBB Tip of the Week: Mother’s Day provides opportunity for scammers

By Lauren Hall Marketplace Manager

When Mother’s Day rolls around, we want to get our moms the perfect gift to show them how much they are appreciated. Often, consumers will turn to the internet to find such a gift for their mom.

BBB has received an estimated 43,000 inquiries and 185 complaints on retail florists and jewelry stores in the past year. Better Business Bureau Northwest + Pacific is warning shoppers to beware of scams while shopping for items such as flowers and jewelry for their mom.

According to the National Retail Federation, consumers are expected to spend $23.1 billion this year for Mother’s Day – that’s a near-record high. Since many consumers will be looking for appealing deals on jewelry, special dinners, flowers and gift cards, scammers will try to take advantage of buyers, especially those searching online.

BBB suggests these tips before making an online purchase:

Be a savvy shopper. Take your time and read the fine print. This includes looking for added fees such as shipping, handling and delivery. Review your order and verify the total before confirming your purchase.

Read the description. Online photos use a perfect setting and professional lighting to make the products look as attractive as possible. Your final product may not look quite the same. Make sure you know what you’re getting by reading the full description.

Don’t be deceived by promotions. Mother’s Day is a popular time for online promotions, but most have terms and conditions. Check that you’re getting the savings you expect.

Know the delivery method. Some companies have different delivery methods: same-day, international, standard, guaranteed delivery. Be sure you know which delivery service you are paying for and that you have allowed enough time.

Pay with a credit card. Credit cards provide additional protections, and it’s easier to dispute charges. Debit cards, prepaid cards or gift cards don’t have the same protections as a credit card.

Mother’s Day is a great opportunity to shop at neighborhood florists and other businesses. In-person visits will eliminate confusion and guarantee the quality of the products. To find local, accredited businesses this Mother’s Day, download the BBB app at bbbapp.org.

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