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Tips help shoppers avoid paying full price

Posted May 7, 2012 7:19 a.m. EDT
Updated May 7, 2012 8:27 a.m. EDT

— Shoppers could be throwing away cash without realizing it, but doing five things can help people save money and avoid ever paying full price again.

The No. 1 tip: Resist the urge to splurge.

Sales that encourage shoppers to buy now usually get better with time. One-day sales tend to happen more often than most shoppers think. Waiting for a little bit before buying will reduce the impulse to buy unnecessary items, too.

Tip No. 2.: Check the unit price.

Some brands are changing the package sizes to make it seem like they are offering a better value. By contrast, unit prices break down a product's cost using absolute units of measure.

Tip No. 3: Experts say go generic on drugs, batteries and canned foods.

Many products in these categories have just as good quality as name brands.

Tip No. 4: Compare in-store price tags to online prices.

Web tools such as the Invisible Hand scour the Web for rock-bottom prices on just about any product.

Tip No. 5: Don't be shy. Ask on for a discount on everything from your Internet service to appliances in chain stores.