If you're lucky enough to live in a state that offers tax holidays for back-to-school shopping, this is your heads up - the first of those wonderful tax-free weekends begins this Friday July 31, and your favorite retailers are likely to be wooing you with some of the best back-to-school sales of the season.
Yes, Christmas in July and Black Friday in July are sales gimmicks. And yes, we all know that they tend to be pale imitations of Black Friday in November and the actual holiday shopping season. But retailers understand all too well that "Black Friday" is a powerful marketing ploy that we can never seem to resist, even when the date is still 140 days away. (And it is, I checked.)
Black Friday is a day that divides the nation. Some love it for the thrill of the chase, the rush of pushing past a crowd to get the best possible deal, and the satisfaction of finishing holiday shopping before December hits. Others despise the very concept, and see the day's shopping frenzy as an example of everything that is wrong with modern society.
We've said it before and we'll say it again. You should almost never pay full price for anything. AAA (American Automobile Association) is one of the most common associations that snags you great discounts on travel, retail, dining, and more.
We've been asked the same question, over and over and over, from nearly every cashier we've encountered upon checkout: “Would you like to sign up for our rewards program today?” In a bit of classical conditioning that would impress even Pavlov, we've trained ourselves to turn down the clerk’s proposition, often before they can even finish reciting their oft-rehearsed sales pitch.
Happy Fourth of July!