Getting ready to hit the stores on Black Friday? The day after Thanksgiving gives consumers a chance to get a head start on their holiday shopping with dramatic discounts that create some of the best prices of the year. Whether going to the store at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving or 9 a.m. on Black Friday, make sure to not become a crime victim. Before leaving home, remember that Black Friday is all about being smart with money, not just with how it’s spent, but how it’s protected. Check this list of essential tips for a safe and successful shopping trip.
10 Holiday Shopping Tips
- Planning a shopping trip can save shoppers time and money.
- Cell phone reception can be spotty in some stores, large malls, and retail outlets, so set a specific time and place to meet up after scouring stores for bargains.
- Shopping with a single credit card is safer because it’s easier to cancel one card than several, if a wallet or purse gets lost or stolen.
- When shopping online, use secure connections and only shop at websites you trust.
- Confirm all purchases, online and in-store, and save all receipts. Receipts are needed to make exchanges, refunds, and to dispute an incorrect charge.
- Know your rights when it comes to refunds, cancellations, returns, layaways, bait and switch, and rainchecks.
- Report lost or stolen credit, debit, and ATM cards immediately. Acting fast limits liability for unauthorized charges.
- Know gift card rules. Gift cards are required to be valid for at least 7 years in Massachusetts and gift cards not clearly marked with both a date of issuance and a date of expiration are valid forever.
- Nothing gets a thief going like a car full of shopping bags that are clearly visible. Lock them in the trunk or, if possible, take them directly home.
- Make sure to bring a bottle of water and a few light snacks. Spending hours wading through shoppers and stores can leave people exhausted and dehydrated.
What are your Black Friday shopping safety tips? Comment below or tweet us at @MassGov.
Tags: bait and switch, Black Friday, cancellations, credit card, day after Thanksgiving, debit card, gift cards, layaways, Planning a shopping trip, raincheck, refunds, returns, save all receipts, shopping online, Shopping safety tips
Spring into Shape! Fitness Tips for Adults and Children posted on Apr 1
Struggling with a daily fitness routine? You’re not alone. One in four Massachusetts middle school and high school students, and more than half of all adults in the state, are obese or overweight. The good news is that engaging in physical activity and reaching a …Continue Reading Spring into Shape! Fitness Tips for Adults and Children
How to Prevent Poisonings in Your Home posted on Mar 27
Poisoning is a serious issue in the United States, especially for young children. Every 13 seconds, a poison control center receives a phone call reporting exposure to toxic chemicals or substances, and more than 90 percent of these occurrences happen at home, according to the …Continue Reading How to Prevent Poisonings in Your Home
Get Your Money Back, Massachusetts! posted on Mar 27
Whether it’s a few dollars in your coat pocket or change in an old piggy bank, everyone loves finding forgotten money. The Commonwealth is currently holding more than $2.4 billion in unclaimed property, and according to the Massachusetts Unclaimed Property Division, under the Office of …Continue Reading Get Your Money Back, Massachusetts!