Theo Thimou, Clark.com
If you’re a fan of saving money on retail items, you’re probably a fan of price matching.
Price matching is a great way to use your smartphone to get a lower price on an item at participating stores. And the best part of it is that you don’t have to run all over town chasing a deal!
Using the power of technology that’s already in the palm of their hands, most price-matchers simply pull up a competitor’s website on their phone when they’re in store.
What they’re looking for is the identical item to what they’re purchasing, but with a lower price.
If they can find it cheaper somewhere else — it usually has to be at a brick-and-mortar retailer, though some stores now match Amazon, too — bingo!
With price matching, they can get whatever it is they’re buying at a cheaper price by asking the store to match a competitor’s price.
Not all retailers price match, but most of the major ones do.
It’s also possible to price match using sales circulars from the Sunday newspaper if you’re not smartphone savvy.
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Epic fail at retail: Black Friday price matching bans!
Price matching sounds great, right?
But there’s a dirty little secret here: A lot of the big guys suspend their price matching policies from around Thanksgiving until Cyber Monday or beyond.
They’re trying to avoid matching rock-bottom prices from competitors during the highly promotional Black Friday weekend.
Here are some retailers we’ve found with fine print that will temporarily kill your deal-finding mojo in this way.
So be careful out there when you’re shopping!
The nation’s largest retailer is shutting down price matching for the opening salvo of the holiday season.
Wal-Mart’s policy reads, “No price matches to other retailers for prices shown from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber-Monday.”
The Red Retailer’s website notes that, “Price matches and adjustments to competitors will not be allowed for prices from Thanksgiving Day through the entire week after Thanksgiving (11/23/2017 – 12/2/2017).”
Toys R Us
The ailing toy store won’t match “any competitor’s advertised store or online pricing for Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday,” according to its own website.
The electronics retailer’s Price Match Guarantee won’t cover any “items for sale Thanksgiving Day through the Monday after Thanksgiving, whether offered by Best Buy or a competitor.”
“Holiday sales offers including during Black Friday and Cyber Monday (Office Depot, OfficeMax or any eligible retailer) are also excluded” from the office-supply store’s usual price matching policy.
“Sears will not price match items offered for sale Thanksgiving Day through the Wednesday after Thanksgiving,” according to the struggling retailer’s website.
The regional electronics chain’s price-matching policy “excludes items for sale Thanksgiving Day through the Monday after Thanksgiving, whether offered by Fry’s or a competitor.”
Interestingly, the office-supply store seems to only squelch price matching for two days a year, according to its website.
But the unfortunate news is that they’re two of the most important days on the calendar for deep-discount bargain hunters!
“We don’t price match competitors’ or our own local or special events (e.g., grand opening, anniversary, clearance, timed sales or liquidation sales, ‘Black Friday’ or ‘Cyber Monday’ sales).