Personally, I hate shopping. I do though, like the act of giving gifts. There is something always great about spreading joy to friends and family during the holiday seasons. My wife is a bargain hunter and loves the “sport” of the deal hunt. She went missing on Black Friday only to reappear a few hours later with lots of great deals. But she was honest with me, she felt that the deals were not that great for our family. We don’t need toys…the kids are just too old (I wouldn’t mind a video game or two though). I, on the other hand, am a surgical shopper. I shop in my mind well before and then strategically swoop into the brick and mortar store to get the presents and then I’m gone…and usually it is during the week of Christmas.
For those of us who can’t stand the lines at physical stores, you now have an alternative called Cyber Monday. It’s the first day back at work when people are recovering from the holidays. Many have not bought gifts or missed a deal during Black Friday and so they turn to their computer to see if they can score an even better deal on something. The online markdowns are frequently pretty good, AND you don’t have to deal with rude and obnoxious shoppers. And the deals start early! In fact yesterday(the Saturday before Cyber Monday), I missed an amazing deal on the full James Bond Blu-Ray set which was going for just $99…the price just a few hours after this cyber-doorbuster deal is now $349. Doh!
Cyber Monday is great in my mind. But there is always something nice about being able to go back to a physical store where you bought something from in order to return or exchange it. And there are plenty of scams that exist online, site that offer incredible deals but are just fronts to someone stealing your credit and personal information. But just a note, this happens in the physical world as well. A few years ago during the holiday season, I became a victim of identity theft. It turns out that some holiday help at one of these big box stores took a handful of credit card receipts and information and began opening other credit accounts and charging up a storm…all against my credit. But the joke was on them. They were caught and I was not responsible for the charges. Since then, and I recommend that everyone do this, I have signed up for a credit monitoring service that notifies me if any odd behavior is happening with my cards or credit. And all of the major credit companies now have automated monitoring to ensure that if anything odd happens on your account, that you are immediately contacted and notified.
Anyway, so there are dangers in the physical world. But there are probably more in the online world. So you need to be careful and shop online intelligently.
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