The 7 shopping tricks you probably never knew about

Hi everyone! Today is a sponsored guest post with loads of fantastic tips on how to save money when you’re shopping. Number 2 is my own personal favourite. Enjoy!

For some of us, it’s the ultimate chore. For others, shopping is a great escape. And for the rest, the challenge of bargain hunting, and finding deals that make you feel like you’re winning are a big part of the fun. If you fall into the final category, you might feel as though it’s a case of defying odds which are stacked against you, and coming out on top of a deal can be a very satisfying feeling.

So in the face of many retailers and providers acting against the interest of average UK shopper, here are seven tips to help you turn the tables next time you need to fill your shopping basket.

  1. The trick  of 1, 7, 8

When you see price tags ending in the numbers 1, 7 or 8, that’s a sure sign that the item is part of a clearance sale. So if it isn’t marked as goods to be cleared, then you’re in with a great chance of haggling the price down even further. After all, the store will clearly be anxious to get rid of it, so you have the power.

2. Play Amazon to your advantage

Amazon recently increased the free delivery threshold amount for an order from £10 to £20. This means if you were to order something valued at £19.90, you could be in line to pay delivery of up to £6, taking your basket total to £25.90. Instead, you can use this tool to find cheap fillers valued at under a quid, thus ensuring you literally get more for less.

3. Bide your time – delays can save you money

It’s a little trick not many online shoppers are aware of, but if you abandon your online shopping cart for a day or two without checking the order out, many sites will entice you to get the order finalised by offering discounts or vouchers. As this thread will tell you, many shoppers have saved a fortune by performing this sneaky trick.

4. Rain check vouchers

You’ll never miss out on a special offer item again if you play your cards right. Essentially, goods on special offer in supermarkets fly off the shelves, but more often than not if the discounted item you want is out of stock they will give you a voucher. Sainsbury’s call them ‘Special Coupons’, ASDA refer to them as ‘Smiley Vouchers’ and others follow a similar lead. Often it’s just a case of explaining this to the shop assistant, and, provided the store has such ‘rain check vouchers’ in place, you should be golden.

5. Don’t let your credit card get out of hand

We all use our plastic for shopping – it’s easy and convenient. But if you’re unable to clear your balance each month, then chances are you’re going to paying over the odds in terms of interest. If this is the case for you and your balance is higher than you’d like, you might want to consider either doing a balance transfer onto another card, or even getting a cheap loan to consolidate the debt.

7. Get gift card savvy with Zeek

If you want to stock up on gift cards and vouchers at a cut price, then it is well worth checking out Zeek. They flog vouchers for retailers, usually with at least a 25 per cent discount attached for the buyer. There are some obscure stores on there though, so be careful which ones you buy from. However, if you’ve identified an item from a store that you want to buy from for yourself, it makes sense to log onto Zeek first and see if there is a suitable voucher available.

8. Just ask…

We as Brits perhaps aren’t born for haggling, but the truth is that high street shops have goods to sell, and their sales managers have targets to hit. Often if you want a discount, all you have to do is ask. It may seem uncouth in our civilised world, but there’s an old saying: if you don’t ask, you don’t get.

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