The secret that saving-savvy pros swear by in order to nab the best prices on everything from groceries to electronics? Check the calendar before you shop. Various stores put their best sales on certain days of the week — usually the days when they have low foot traffic — to encourage new and loyal customers to drop by. And by knowing which days of the week are devoted to which sales, you’ll be able to nab those deals without wasting time. Check out these tips for gas, groceries, electronics, and more.
To save big time at grocery stores, shop on Wednesday.
“Most grocery stores release new savings circulars on Wednesday, while still honoring the prior week’s deals, doubling the items you’ll be able to find on sale. And since most people do their shopping on Sunday, chances are the grocery store won’t be as crowded on Wednesday, so you can snag deals with ease. To find the best sales, download the Flipp app (Flipp.com), which puts all weekly circulars in one place.”
—Andrea Woroch, moneysaving expert at AndreaWoroch.com
To nab low prices at the mall, visit on Thursday.
“Mall stores generally have big blowout sales on the weekends — their busiest time. What many shoppers don’t know? Retailers tend to place their sale signage on Thursday evenings to have it in place when doors open on Friday. This means that you’ll not only be able to take advantage of the sale early but you’ll be privy to a bigger selection of items before the busy weekend shopping crowd hits.”
—Janet Alvarez, money-saving expert at Wisebread.com
To pay less on gas, fill up on Monday.
“Energy markets — which help determine the wholesale price of oil — are closed over the weekend, and gas station owners usually base the price of their gas on market prices once the they reopen on Mondays. But as the week goes on, if station owners see the price of oil rising, they raise their prices in return. And since research shows that most folks get their gas on Thursday and Friday, that means they’re paying higher prices. Fill up on Monday instead, and you can end up paying up to 10 cents less per gallon.”
—Patrick De Haan, lead petroleum analyst for the GasBuddy app
To save on electronics, buy them at the end of the month.
“At most electronics stores, the sales associates have to meet certain goals at the end of the month — a time they’re most willing to negotiate in order to make the sale. To help negotiate, look for open-box products or display items and ask for discounts based on superficial damage. Also, bundle items like a coffee maker and computer keyboard and ask for 10 percent off — that’s $20 off a $200 purchase.”
—Kyle James, founder of Rather-be-Shopping.com
To score 50 percent off at warehouses, go on Monday.
“Warehouse stores have pretty generous return policies, and weekends are their busiest times. Rather than sending returns back to vendors or liquidators, stores like Costco and Sam’s Club both devote a few shelves to the marked-down items, typically found at the back of the store. Show up on a Monday, and you’ll find a plethora of new options waiting! You might even be able to snag brand-new products with packaging that has been damaged, but the savings — up to 50 percent off — make it worth the purchase!”
—Mary Potter Kenyon, author of Coupon Crazy: The Science, the Savings, and the Stories Behind America’s Extreme Obsession
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.