October 25, 2010

Tip of the day—Percentage Discounts

Percentage discounts can be a little tricky.

  • Buy one, get one 50% off—this discount only means that you’re getting 25% off each item.  This isn’t that great of a deal, and it is meant to look better than it is to draw you in.
  • Buy one, get one of equal or lesser value 50% off—this could be even less of a discount if your items aren’t equally priced.  If you buy one item at $20 and another at $10, you’re only getting $5 off. 
  • 50% off—divide the price of the item by 2 to know how much you’ll spend.
  • 10% off—Move the decimal point to the left and you’ll see how much you’ll get off.  If your item costs $12.00 originally, by moving the decimal point to the left one you see the discount of $1.20.  To make things very easy, you can use this to determine other percentages.  20% off is two times that amount ($1.20=10% off, $2.40=20% off).  30% off is three times that amount, etc, etc.
  • 25% off—Divide the original number by 4 to see your discount.
  • 33% off—Divide the original number by 3 to see your discount. 
  • Keep in mind that many stores don’t want this to be easy for you unless they are truly trying to liquidate what they have.  Rarely will you see charts in stores with percentage discounts and final pricing, and when you do, take advantage of the sale.  It is usually a sign that the store wants the sale. 
  • Check to see what the percentage is off of full price verses waiting a few weeks for the item to go to mark down.  I rarely buy anything full priced at stores like Gymboree or Old Navy because their sales are so regular and they mark down their products so quickly.  25% off an original price might not be as good of a discount as waiting until it is on sale and you have another coupon.
  • When using percentage off coupons together, ask the clerk if they will be used separately or in conjunction with one another.  Usually they will take off one coupon, get a total, and then take off another coupon.  In other words, a 30% off coupon and 10% off coupon do not equal 40% off.  Original price of the item--$10.  Thirty percent ($3) taken off of that amount=$7.  Then the clerk will take off another 10% off of that price (70cts)=final price of $6.30. 

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