Outlet stores

10 tips for getting the best deals in outlet stores


Outlet stores have a lot of great deals that can make the trip worthwhile, but some savings aren’t quite what they seem.

Here are 10 things to keep in mind before shopping at a mall.

1. Take a closer look at the output products

Points of sale are not restricted to items that did not sell at the retail store. Some offer second-grade or B-grade products, and many retailers stock items made just for their outlets, sometimes with noticeable quality differences from what you’ll find at the mall.

It is possible that the outlet version of an item will be made cheaply and not last as long as what you would buy in the regular store, so consider quality as well as price. On the other hand, some differences may be insignificant and the savings may exceed them.

2. Compare prices beforehand

Retailers know you’re looking for savings in the outlet stores, and many of them try to make those discounts look as big as possible. You may see signs in the outlet store suggesting the prices are 65% off, but these percentages only apply to types of items that have not sold despite repeated markdowns.

If you want to know what you’re actually saving, check out the retailer’s website and shop around. You might be surprised to find that point-of-sale discounts aren’t as big as they claim.

3. Join factory clubs online

Simon, a large commercial real estate group, owns Premium Outlets in the United States and Puerto Rico. With Premium Outlets’ free VIP Buyers Club, you will receive online and printable coupons and special event notifications.

Tangier, another large outlet manager in the United States, charges a one-time fee of $ 10 to join TangierClub, but you receive coupons and earn gift cards and other rewards at different “spend levels”.

4. Get the best off-season deals

Buy your winter clothes in summer and summer items in winter to lower outlet prices even further.

5. Time your shopping trip

Outlets can get crowded, so you will do your best to avoid traffic jams and picked up shelves while shopping during off-peak hours.

Experts suggest stopping on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays. Buy early in the day. If you are not in the morning, avoid the early afternoon and wait until dinner time.

6. Check retail stores before outlets

Try shopping during the sales or with coupons at the local mall, where you might find comparable prices but better. Don’t forget to look for clearance items in store and online.

7. Check with sales centers for coupons and flyers

Coupons and other discounts can make factory shopping even more interesting. Call or go online to see if any coupons or flyers offer additional savings. Discounts for senior citizens and military personnel may also be available.

8. Look at the return policy

Unless you don’t mind returning to the mall, check the return policy before stocking up on discounted goods. Many regular stores do not take point-of-sale returns.

9. Ask point of sale staff

If you have questions about the quality of the output items, ask the store staff. Some employees can tell you if the items are made specifically for the point of sale. Staff can also provide other valuable information.

10. Move away if necessary

Can’t see anything you like? Don’t be afraid to walk away empty-handed.

Shopping malls are usually located in remote locations. Not only is this real estate cheaper, but buyers can also think of outlet shopping as an investment in a day trip. With the expense of gas, time and energy, buyers may feel the need to justify these sunk costs and end up spending more than they otherwise would.

Ignore the urge to spend more just to make the trip worth it. Spending more money on unnecessary things won’t make you feel better, no matter how much you spend on gas.

Outlet stores are of course only one way to get a good deal. If scavenger hunting is your passion, be sure to check out other shopping stories, including:

What is your approach to points of sale? Share with us in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

Ari Cetron contributed to this report.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, sometimes we receive compensation for clicking on links in our stories.


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