I’m a shopping insider and here’s how to save even more in the January sales – and hacks that mean you’ll never queue | The Sun

BLUE Monday is officially here and plenty of us will be hitting the shops in the hope of a little retail therapy.

But with four in ten Brits set to hit the January Sales* it’s fair to say that you may have to sharpen those elbows and the queues are enough to put anyone off.


However, a trip to the sales can be a breeze when you’re armed with the right information.

From avoiding the queues to bagging additional discounts, read on to discover how to transform your January sales spree from hell to pure heaven.

SAVE CASH WHEN SHOPPING ONLINE

“Adding a browser discount tool like Pouch to your web browser will allow you to save cash as it will automatically scroll and input the best value discount code before the checkout,” says Embryo brand manager and discount expert – Jo Threlfall.

“The platform also includes a section on the best deals to help save extra money and purchase items at the best time online.”

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CHECK OUT YOUR LOCAL CHARITY SHOPS 

“Many stores right now are clearing out after Christmas, and you'll be able to find some great secondhand items in local vintage shops if you're looking for winter wardrobe basics or some new additions to your wardrobe for spring and summer,” says Jo.

“If you want to refresh your home space after the festive season, you can also check out vintage and charity shops for some great home finds. 

“If you're on a budget, you can get hold of lamps, mirrors, glasses, plates, mugs, rugs, matts, etc for a great price simply by going to Oxfam, British Heart Foundation, Scope, and many more charity shops based in your local area.”

RESERVE YOUR HOLIDAY AND BOOK FLIGHTS EARLY 

“When it comes to planning your trips this year, plan ahead and check out the latest flight deals to help you save money for your next holiday abroad,” Jo says.  

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“A lot of travel providers are offering some great deals and only require a deposit of £60. You can also reserve and split payments by reserving tour accommodation on booking.com so you don't pay the full fee now.”

USE APPS TO PAY

Queuing for the tills really dulls the thrill of finding that perfect purchase, however, there’s no need to wait in line. 

Stores like Zara, Muji, and Tiger have introduced apps as ways of paying, meaning that you can simply scan your item on your phone, make a payment online and leave the store stress free.

PICK THE RIGHT TILL

If you are in a store where a physical till is the only option then make sure you choose the right one!

Rather than heading to your nearest checkout, instead make your way to the kids, men's, electrical, or home section of a store to make your purchase.

The lines tend to be much shorter, shaving precious minutes off your shopping time. 

RESERVE A DRESSING ROOM

We all know that we should be trying on before we buy but the long lines to the dressing room are enough to put anyone off.

However, Zara shoppers rejoice! The store has introduced the option to reserve a changing room before you visit a store.

The function can be found in the app under store locator, where you can select your nearest store and book a time slot.

BOOST YOUR DISCOUNT

It’s safe to say that most products on sale end up looking a little worse for wear as shoppers rummage through them to find the best bargains.

“If they are looking a little tatty it is worth haggling for an added discount”, says Fabulous' Fashion Editor Clemmie Fieldsend. 

“Most stores will offer up to ten per cent off items that are damaged or stained.”

CHECK CHANGING ROOM RETURN RAILS

The nature of sales means that sizes are often limited in stock, however, if you can’t find your size, there is one place you have probably forgotten to check.

“It is always worth having a browse on changing room returns rails as there may be an item that has yet to be returned to the store floor,” says Clemmie.

KNOW WHAT TO BUY

Most stores will offer some kind of discount during the month of January but according to credit card company Marbles, there are some items that are reduced more this month than others.

The company says that furniture is most discounted at this time of year along with children’s toys with both normally marked down by at least 50 per cent.

Meanwhile, tech fans should save their bargain hunting for November in the Black Friday sales for a bigger discount.

TIME IT RIGHT 

You might be dreaming of a lie-in after your first week back at work but when it comes to the sales it is best to head out first thing in the morning.

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“Staff will have replenished any sales stock the night before and returned the store to its pristine state meaning you can browse with ease while having first pick of the items available,” advises Clemmie.

*According to research by Barclaycard

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