Every month of the year, certain items are discounted due to overstock, holiday sales, or transitions from one season to the next. Here are the shopping highlights for October in Hawai’i stores. Of course, we think the best way to save money is not to spend it! But, when you need or want to, plan your spending to take advantage of the times of the year when what you buy is at the lowest possible price.
- Special events with shopping discounts and deals include Halloween.
Discounted seasonal items to buy in October
Jeans and denim
Since school is underway, retailers may have discounts on their leftover stock of jeans and other denim clothing.
We think the best frugal policy is to pick up holiday décor AFTER the holiday, when you can get steep discounts on leftovers. This doesn’t work for Halloween candy, of course. In this case, shop early for best selection and shop around for the best price. The best buys are naturally at a big retail store such as Costco, Target, and Walmart. It can also be a good candy-buying strategy to wait for October 30, or the morning of October 31 to pick up last minute candy at a discount—but the pickings are typically very slim. If you want specific types of candy, go earlier than later. If you don’t care (any candy will do), buy it on October 30-31.
Halloween décor and costumes
For costumes, we mostly like to pull together something from our closet, with perhaps some makeup or face paint and relevant hair styling or hat. At our “mother ship”, you can find over 100 Halloween costume ideas. Another trick is to hit secondhand stores such as Goodwill for retail costumes—since people rarely re-use a costume, you can sometimes (but not always) find good quality costumes at a discount. Fabric and craft stores also always have lots of ideas and projects for Halloween—some you can download for free from their website.
Black Friday has somewhat lost its luster. Retailers try to outdo each other and come out earlier and earlier with deals on goods from cookware to electronics, appliances, toys, and you-name-it. To stay on top of your needs and avoid impulse buying, keep a running list of things you need, and some that you “want”. I find that “wants” on my shopping list lose their appeal the longer they stay on the list—some simply get crossed off. In any case, October is a good time to do some shopping research and compare prices. Check big retailers such as Amazon, Costco, Target, and Walmart. Staying in the know about current prices helps you decide whether a discount is a good one.
New products to buy in October
New and Used Cars
Fall to winter is the best time to buy a car. New car prices are lowest at the end of the month and the end of the year (October-December). If a used car is your goal, it’s also a good time to buy, when the buyers of new cars want to trade-in or sell their older model. If saving money on transportation is your goal (rather than owning the latest model at the best price), then buying a used car is always the better deal. Shop wisely and get a guarantee from a dealer or have a reliable mechanic check out the condition on a private purchase.
Appliance dealers start to discount outgoing models in fall, though prices tend to be lower in November leading up to Black Friday. So, in October the strategy for buying appliances is to “pre-shop” to learn the prices and features of different models. When you get ready to buy, you can recognize the really good deals. However, most of us tend to buy an appliance when the current one breaks down, which can be any time of year. In fact, appliances often give up at the least opportune time, such as just before a big party or while you’re gone on vacation. Another home appliance buying strategy is to estimate the machine’s untimely death. Many large appliances have a lifespan of 10-15 years, including washers, dryers, dishwashers, freezers, and garbage disposals. Microwaves generally give out in less than 10 years. Gas or electric ranges usually last a little more than 15 years. So, if you have an appliance approaching it’s average end-of-life span, you might buy one on sale and store it in the garage until needed. In the case of a refrigerator, you could buy a new one and retire your current frig to the garage as a backup storage space for cold beverages, or to use as a “cold cellar” for fresh vegetables. Or, simply sell or giveaway the appliance you have and replace it with a new one.
Batteries are another good item to buy in fall and then change the batteries in your smoke detectors. It’s also a good time to check and change out the batteries in emergency lights and flashlights, including those in your emergency kit(s).
You do have an emergency preparedness kit, right? If not, please put it on your to do list and get the necessary supplies. There is no one-size-fits-all kit. What you need depends on your ʻohana. Find suggestions here:
- Hawaii Emergency Management Agency | Disaster supply kit should last for at least 14 days
- Office of Public Health Preparedness | Make a Kit (hawaii.gov)