Spend it Saturday: How to get a Bargain – the Coast Dress


On Wednesday of this week, I purchased this dress from the Coast website. I paid £79 for it (plus £2.99 post and packaging). But this wasn’t an indulgent spur of the moment splurge. Oh no. This was bargainista shopping at its best, a carefully choreographed purchase of a dress, which I’m going to wear to a couple of weddings later in the year. Here’s how you can get that dress (or any other item for that matter) for less…

1.) Keep your eyes peeled
As I’m on a budget I tend to go shopping with a particular objective in mind and am sometimes blinkered to other items around me. However, it’s worth taking note of your surroundings and even wandering over to investigate some of the lust-worthy but unaffordable items. I was looking for accessories to go with another wedding outfit when I spotted this dress in Selfridge’s and fell for it.

2.) Try it on
To make this work, once you’ve spotted something which you love, but can’t afford right now, you’ll need to try it on. I warn you if it’s as lovely as you hoped it would be, the temptation to bung it on the credit card then and there is immense. But if you can resist, it’s so worth it when you pick it up at a discount price later. Make sure you like the item and determine which size fits you best.

3.) Decide how much you’re willing to pay
OK, perhaps the ticket price is too hefty for this to be an impulse purchase. At what price would you consider buying the item at? Decided. Right. Now tell the Sales Assistant at the Fitting Rooms that you’ll think about it and give her the item back to put into stock.

4.) Sign up for special offers
When you’re home sign up for special offers through the retailer’s website and also trawl other voucher code sites for discounts. Keep checking your inbox and wait for that email with an announcement of a special offer, or sale, which makes your item affordable. Also pop into the store occasionally to check out their offers. When you see an offer decide if it’s the right time to buy. This is going to be a head Vs heart decision of how much you want the item Vs how cheaply you want it.

5.) Decided it’s the deal?
My dress was reduced from £135 to £79, which was enough for me to dust off the credit card. Now see if you can get any points or cashback on your purchase to really get maximum cost-effectiveness. I got £3.29 cashback from Quidco and also paid for it on my cashback credit card. Not to mention the Nectar points I picked up by doing my searches using their toolbar.

6.) When it’s right – BUY!
I love this way of sale shopping as it prevents you from purchasing things simply because ‘they’re a bargain’. Instead it means you’re actually getting a bargain on things you really want, and, well, everyone loves the cheap thrill of getting a bargain…don’t they?

I must say though if it’s an absolute must have. Then get it then and there. There’s no guarantees that something is going to be reduced, or that if it is, that they’ll have stock in the right size and colour for you. Also if you’re adopting this philosophy go for classic, not high fashion items, which might date by the time you get your mitts on them. Enjoy!

Do you hold out for a bargain? What are your tips for getting a great deal?


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