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4 steps to become a Smart Shopper

Baizat Team
Budgeting and Saving
Shopping, Finance, Buying, Saving, Budgeting, Tips, Pitfalls

Have you ever been to the mall and left with a lot more than you came for? Do you regularly spend most of your wages on payday?

It can be very tempting to spend a lot of money whenever you go shopping. Shops use various measures to persuade you to part with your cash, but if you take the time to follow these 4 steps you will become a smart shopper and save money every time you shop.


1. Buy only what you need


Before you go out shopping make a list of what you need. This is particularly good advice when you go food shopping. Shops use promotions such as ‘buy one, get one free’ to try and tempt customers into spending more money. A lot of the time people will spend money on these offers as they are getting a good deal, but they don’t always need the product that is on offer.

When you are considering buying a product, ask yourself if you really need it. If you are strict and only buy what you need then you will save money.

Top Tip: Did you know that many shops will put essential items like bread and milk at the back of the store, so you have to walk past all their offers and more expensive items every time you want to get your necessities? This is an age old trick used by many stores, have a look for it next time you are shopping.


2. Shop at end of season sales and outlet stores


This advice applies to all shops, but is particularly useful when shopping for clothes. End of season sales see shops slash their prices in order to make room for arrival of new lines of stock. If you see an item that you like in a shop, check the price. If it costs more than your budget will allow, or if you perceive it to be bad value, then wait until the end of season sale before you buy it. This requires patience, but it means that there is more money in your pocket.

You can also shop at outlet stores, which mainly stock "out-of-season” goods at a much lower price than you will find normally.

Top Tip: Don’t be fooled by shops that advertise "75% off” or promote sales all year round – in many cases they are really advertising a normal price and showing an "old price” that was never offered for general sale. Next time you see a sale, make sure you are actually getting good value!


3. Shop around for the best offers


Whether you are making a large purchase or a small purchase, it is always a good idea to shop around for the best offer before buying. Many shops will sell the same item for a high price, when it is sold cheaper at another outlet. Don’t find yourself paying for the more costly company’s latest advertising campaign!

You can shop around in person by going round different shops and comparing prices, or on the internet via online stores and price comparison websites.

There are many different price comparison websites which cover a wide variety of different products and services. Although these measures can be time consuming, noting your savings each time you make a purchase will soon add up to show you the long term benefit.

Some price comparison websites to check are:, Yahoo! Shopping, or even by simply using Google to search for it yourself!

Top Tip: If you save 50 AED when shopping, why not spend 15 AED and treat yourself to a fruit smoothie – add reward to your savings and you will be more likely to do it in the future!


4. Avoid impulse buying


Have you ever walked into a shop and spotted something that you just have to buy? And without thinking you go in and buy it? This is known as impulse buying.

You don’t think about whether you need the item or not, or how expensive the item is; you just decide on the spot to buy it.

Impulse buying is not wise for people who wish to save money or those who wish to strictly stick to a budget.

Top Tip: When you come across an item in a shop that you like the look of, ask yourself if you need it, and if you can afford it. If the answer to either question is no, don’t buy it. Even if you can, follow point 3 and shop around first.

For more on being a Smart Shopper, come to one of our Personal Financial Empowerment Seminars.

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