We’ve all been there. You walk into Target with a defined list that should tally about $50, but walk out spending more than $100. Ugh! There’s something about being there that makes you want to browse, grab a coffee and hang out a while. Before you know it, your red cart is full and you’ve spent way more than planned. By now you’re aware this happens to all of us. Including yours truly. Particularly when there are little people shopping with me.
A few years ago I made changes to my target game plan. And it works! If you’ve been struggling to save money on these trips, I hope these tips will help!
1. I always always
shop with a detailed list. I’ve shared my simple coupon shopping list before, which you can read about here
. There’s nothing more important in terms of saving money than NOT buying what is NOT on your list…and what you don’t need. Easy as that.
2. Avoid the end caps, unless it’s marked “clearance” on the top. Target end caps are a means of getting you to buy more. I don’t know that those deals are saving my family money. Most of the clearance end caps can be found on the other end of the main aisles. They usually face the wall and located in an area you aren’t apt to see from walking down the main aisle-way.Before I do any shopping, I spend time looking through sales ads and researching online. I’d rather not make an on-the-spot decision to buy something, only to later find another store is selling the same item for a lot less. We’ve all overspent on an item only to find it for a lesser price somewhere else. Annoying!
3. My most important tip about saving money at target? Do your shopping right before you have something firm on your calendar. Sounds crazy, but it works!
During the school year I do my target shopping at 10:30am. This is for a number of reasons (there is less people in the store at that time), but mainly because I have to pick up one of my children from school at 11:45am. So, I am giving myself about 45 minutes to get everything on my list, plus a little cushion room in case there are long lines. Having that fire under my you know what
to get going makes a big difference in my target bill that day. I’m unlikely to browse, walk aimlessly, or deviate from my shopping list when I have somewhere to be. It keeps me focused and out of the store as quickly as possible.
During the summer, I’m naturally going to spend less time in target because all 3 kids are home with me. And what mother wants to shop at target with 3 children?
Did you know Target has a clearance mark-down schedule? I didn’t and was interested in learning more. I think this depends on your local store so you may want to take a deeper look at how your store operates, but it’s worth it if it’s going to save you even more money.
Here is the “rumored” clearance schedule…
Monday Target Markdowns: Kids’ Clothing, Stationery (office supplies, gift wrap), Electronics
Tuesday Target Markdowns: Women’s Clothing and Domestics (Decor)
Wednesday Target Markdowns: Men’s Clothing, Toys, Food, Health and Beauty
Thursday Target Markdowns: Lingerie, Shoes, Housewares
Friday Target Markdowns: Cosmetics, Automotive
Target usually marks down clearance items every 2 weeks. If you see something on clearance for 30-50% off, come back in a week or two to see if it’s marked down even further. It helps to know the ins and outs of target and their sales cycle!