Presidents’ Day was created to honor this country’s great leaders. But with the holiday coming at the tail end of the winter season (and the gift-giving season,) it’s also a great time to score a deal on something you’ve perhaps had your eye on.
Established in 1885, the holiday was originally created to honor George Washington and held on his birthday, Feb. 22. It became known as a day to celebrate all U.S. presidents after it was moved to the third Monday of every February, in order to create a three-day weekend for workers. Today, that extended weekend comes in handy as retailers take the opportunity to create a shopping bonanza second only to Black Friday.
As we reported earlier, a survey by retail site Shop It To Me found that overall February is the month of the year with the best sales -a distinction driven by Presidents’ Day deals. The survey found that average online sales reached 47% during February 2012, significantly higher than during the rest of the year. “Retailers are eager to clear out winter merchandise, so they can start selling spring items,” said Shop It To Me CEO Charlie Graham. “That’s why there are so many clearance events during February and why Presidents’ Day ushers in a host of great sales.”
Don’t miss out on the deals. Here’s a quick guide on where to shop and a few savings tips.
Skirt Shipping Fees
A great way to save when shopping online is by forgoing shipping fees. Many stores will have additional deals on free shipping if you spend over a designated amount. It could be worth it to spend an extra $25 if it could save you even more in shipping, especially for large items like appliances and furniture. Another way to avoid shipping costs: in-store pick up. If the item you want is available in store as well as online, take advantage of the online price and have it held to be picked up at your convenience.
Kmart - TVs up to 20% off and extra 5% off tablets, portable electronics and printers & monitors.
American Eagle - 25% Off + Free Shipping
Old Navy - Up to 40% off all styles of children’s and baby clothing.
Target - Save 50% on clearance items.
Seek Department Store Apparel
The best tip for shopping in department stores during this time of year is to stock up on apparel for next winter. Odds are the best deals will be on items still on shelves as retailer make way for spring inventory. If you’re in the market for a new winter coat or winter accessories, this will be an opportune weekend. Check out:
Macy’s - Extra 25% off of clearance, 20%-50% off of home furnishings and free shipping.
JC Penny – 30%-50% off clearance items.
Kohl’s - 30%-50% off watches, 70% off fine jewelry and 50%-60% off bedding.
Sears - Up to 30% off appliances, 50% off of spring fashions and 10% off home goods.
Save Using Online Tricks
Finally, to ensure you get the best deals, purchase with a plan. Download weekly circular/local ads online. BeFrugal.com is a great resource for countless weekly ads. There you can find local Presidents’ Day sales and additional coupons. Also, check the Twitter and Facebook account of your favorite store for exclusive deal announcements. Bloomingdales, for example, is currently advertising 40% during their
#BigBrownBag sale via Twitter. One last tip: compare prices to be sure you’re getting the best bargain. Price comparison apps like RedLaser and ShopSavvy will help you save time and money. To use them, scan an item’s bar code and find out if a competing store offers a better price. You may even be able to convince a manager to match it by showing him or her the difference.
Photo Courtesy, Alan Cleaver.