Below is what’s meant by some general policies and disclaimers you’re likely to encounter regarding sales and deals post on Southern Maine on the Cheap.
- “While Supplies Last” and “Not Valid with Other Offers.” These phrases mean just what they say. The first means that when they’re out, they’re out. On sale items, some but all merchants offer a rain check. The second means that they won’t both honor a special offer and a coupon for the same purchase. Pick whichever saves you the most, and be aware of the expiration dates.
- “Be one of the first 50 [or 100 or 500 or whatever] customers and get….” If you are #51, #101, #501 or whatever, you just missed and are out of luck. Such offers are most common with grand opening promotions.
- “Service charges may apply.” When buying sports events or show tickets online (and sometimes even in person) via Ticketmaster, Tickethorse, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, special exhibits that are ticket separately from museum admission, and others, expect a service charge or “convenience fee” to be added. When we know that a customary service charge has been waived, we try include that in our post.
- “Taxes and gratuities additional.” For restaurant specials, taxes must be added to the cost of the special. And don’t forget to tip your server. If you are enjoying a BOGO or twofer meal deal, tip on the entire amount.
- “Taxes and other charges additional.” Bargain air fares and lodging deals are quoted by the base price. Expect fees — sometimes hefty ones — to be added when you buy.
- Buy-by deadlines. Daily deals are over when they’re over — to the minute. When it comes to manufacturers’ coupons, some retailers are to-the-minute rigid. Others will accept a recently expired coupon. Merchants might be more generous with their own coupons. Bed Bath & Beyond, for instance, is famous for accepting any of the their own coupons way past the expiration date. When it doubt, present the coupon when you check out. Worst case scenario is that the cashier will not honor it.
- Going out of businesses sales. When a store hires a liquidator to run its final sale, the “original” price advertised might be higher than the retailer ever charged.
Southern Maine on the Cheap is part of the Living On The Cheap network, owned and operated by a group of more than 20 veteran journalists, frugalistas, lifestyle experts, and consumer advocates. We offer tips on discounts on entertainment, sports and other ways to thrive – not just survive – on less.
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Disclaimer: We post the deals as we find them. But you know the drill: Prices and promotions are subject to change at any time and without notice. If you think something sounds too good to be true, check with the merchant before you head out.