Archives - Shopping Tips
March 28, 2014 Readers of Consumer Reports - more than 27,000 of them - rated 55 supermarket chains. Some chains are doing a super job of satisfying their customers. The results were not as good for Walmart.

February 19, 2014 A new survey shows customer satisfaction with online shopping hit A 12-year low for 2013, although a few big names did will. It also finds that some brick-and-mortar stores are doing a great job providing customer service.

January 24, 2014 E-receipts are often promoted as a way to save paper. They're also convenient – easy to file and to find later. But they’re also the perfect way for retailers to pitch you more stuff after the sale.

January 9, 2014 What really happened this past holiday shopping season? Which retailers did the best job of making us happy and who really had the lowest prices? Is Amazon really the best place to shop? Let’s look at the numbers.

December 19, 2013
Most stores try to make it easy for you to get a refund, but a few big-name retailers have tightened up the rules a bit this year. Some still have restocking fees and most require a picture ID if you want to make a return without a receipt.

December 12, 2013 Consumer groups believe service plans are a waste of money. Is this advice still valid, especially with all the expensive mobile devices we now carry around? We decided to take a fresh look.

December 9, 2013 You don’t have to pay full-price to get those gift cards you need for holiday presents. There are lots of ways to get discounts. Here are some simple ways to get more for your gift-card dollars.
November 27, 2013 This new financing option is available on about 600,000 products that cost $150 or more at Kmart stores nationwide. Kmart says it wants to help customers who are strapped for cash and can’t get credit. Consumer advocates say avoid if you can.

November 26, 2013 Despite all the hype about doorbuster deals, a lot of shoppers take part in this shopping craziness for another reason. For them it’s a tradition. It’s a way to bond with family members or friends.

November 20, 2013 You really need to plan ahead if you’re going to beat the crowds and snag the good deals. For some  products, it’s better to wait for bigger sales. And yes, you can find many of the doorbuster deals online.

October 15, 2013 It’s tempting to get your shopping done early or to see how many items on your list you can snag on Black Friday. The editors at ran the numbers and they say you’ll find the best prices on toys in early December.

September 17, 2013 Layaway can help you stick to a budget and get things you want without running up costly debt. Some big name retailers are touting their “free” programs. Caution: Be sure to check on cancellation fees and know all the rules.

August 29, 2013 You can usually save a bundle by choosing the store-brand version. And the expert taste testers at Consumer Reports found they may be as good as or better than the original. See which ones measure up.

August 9, 2013 To find the great deals you need to know both where and when to shop. Some of the best sales take place from mid-August until September. These timely tips from shopping experts will help you stretch your budget.


August 8, 2013 Schoola Stitch promises “crazy low” prices on gently-used children’s clothing. The selection of new brand garments is huge. This is also a fundraising site: 40% of the proceeds go to fund school programs across the country.
July 12, 2013 Hate to pay full price? Maybe you should try to negotiate a lower one. Haggling doesn’t always work, but a new survey by Consumer Reports shows that if you give it a try, you might just get a better deal.


March 12, 2013 If you want to get your problem solved, you need to speak up and stand your ground until the company makes your happy. Otherwise, you may get the brush-off. So what are the best ways to complain?


January 25, 2013 Prices for 55” and 60” sets are about $200 less than last year at this time. Info on the top-rated models and shopping tips from the editors of Consumer Reports.
January 8, 2013 Buy sheets, blankets or clothing made from “eco-friendly bamboo” and you assume you’ll get what’s on the label – not fabric woven from rayon. The FTC claims some national retailers did just that.
December 28, 2012 Sometimes you get a gift that you just don’t want and there’s no way to take it back to the store. So you pass it along to someone else. Is this rude and distasteful behavior?
December 27, 2012 Despite their popularity, gift cards are not the same as cash. They can expire (unless prohibited by state law) and have non-use fees. A bill before Congress would ban all gift cards from expiring and prohibit inactivity fees.
December 24, 2012 Most major retailers make it fairly easy to bring back unwanted items. But you’ve got to know the rules and they are often different for different types of merchandise.
December 11, 2012 It’s sounds great: buy on credit with no interest for
up to 18 months. But there’s a ‘gotcha’ here that can
come back to bite you. And that’s what stores are counting on.
December 4, 2012 Can a truthful advertising be misleading – even when there’s no fine print of hidden disclosure? The latest research into ads that use the “up to” claim indicates it is possible. Why?
November 29, 2012 Buy an appliance or electronic item and you'll get the pitch to buy an extended warranty. Do you ever need this extra protection? And if you do, how do you get the best deal?
November 27, 2012 The editors at ShopSmart magazine searched the web and found 25 sites that have unique gifts for $25 or less.  Find great gifts – like 36 Cube - without breaking the bank.
November 20, 2012   There’s still trouble in Toyland: toys that can injure or kill a child are still on store shelves. Some are made by well-known companies and sold at major retailers. Find
out how to protect your children.
November 20, 2012   Is Black Friday the best day to shop for bargains? It is for some items, but not everything If you do your homework, you can save a bundle  
November 13, 2012   Thanks to federal rules, gift cards are a lot better than they were just a few years ago. But some cards still have steep upfront fees and there are a few other ‘gotchas’ to know about. Also: where to buy gift cards at a discount.

November 12, 2012
Kmart, Walmart and Toys R Us have cut the cost of their holiday layaway programs. They know a lot of people want to get through the holiday shopping season without going into debt. Just remember: with layaway there are lots of rules.

November 6, 2012
They sound great, but some big-name stores have so many
exclusions that their price-match offers are difficult or impossible to use. You need to do your homework and be ready to fight for your rights.  

October 30, 2012
Rebate offers are on the decline, but a new survey shows the ones that are still available are pretty good. With a rebate you can really save a bundle on some hi-tech products, especially security software.  

July 19, 2012
Want to save money on all sorts of household products ? Then maybe you should check out your local dollar store. A new price survey shows you can save a bundle. Plus, the shopping experience is very pleasant.



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