Belfast Telegraph

Black Friday: Avoid 'deals' that are not as good as they seem

By Claire McNeilly

Hurrah - Black Friday is here! But before you're tempted to dig too deep, consumers should be wary of so-called bargains or unmissable deals which are definitely not as good as they seem.

Shoppers are being warned that more than half of the "deals" in 2016 were cheaper - or the same price - at other times of the year, following an investigation by watchdog Which?

The consumer warrior tracked the Black Friday prices of 35 of the most popular technology, home and personal care products sold by Currys PC World, Argos and Amazon, producing rather surprising results. A Neff Slide and Hide Oven on offer at Currys for £494.99, for example, was cheaper on at least 113 other days of the year and £45 less expensive just three weeks later, the watchdog found.

An Oral B electric toothbrush from Amazon was advertised as 'save 26%: was £40.49, now £29.99' but was £5 cheaper on at least two days in July.

At Argos, a 49-inch LG TV advertised for £499 with the tagline 'Our lowest price' was £4 cheaper a week later and another £16 cheaper at the end of December.

It can be tricky, but consumers should research prices thoroughly before parting with any hard-earned cash today. Have a look around online to see the average price of the goods before you fork out for something on a whim. Often, discounts won't be as impressive as they first seem.

Shops will often use so-called 'doorbusters' to get customers through their doors today. These stand-out items will be drastically reduced in price, but they tend to be few and far between. When in store, try not to get duped by any other deals that aren't actually saving you much money.

Finally, as MoneySavingExpert puts it: "If you were planning to buy something worth £100 anyway and it's 30% off, it's a saving. If the same item isn't on your list, it's a £70 cost."

Belfast Telegraph

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