Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Special That Sucked Me In...

I realized when I read Suckered By the Discount? at A Gai Shan Life that I had just fallen prey to a special the day before.  The point of the post was to remind you that discounts and specials only save you money if you were going to buy it anyway.  They end up "suckering" you if the discount or special is what causes you to shop to start with...

I fell prey to a jewelry special.  I received a mailed ad in April that said that Zales was selling a sterling silver and diamond accent heart pendant and chain for Mother's Day for $19.99 instead of their "regular" $119.00 price.  Of course I knew that they'd never be able to get $119, but the $20 price tag was calling my name.  I immediately thought, "Wow, that's just too good to pass up."  Yep, I was sucked in.

I thought about that ad for the rest of the day and even put the days of the special on my calendar.  I thought that the pull of the deal would wear off in the couple of weeks before the sale, but it didn't.  I ended up going to Zales the first day of the special right after work.

Even though they were out of the necklaces by the time I got there, they were "helpfully" taking layaway orders for them at the $20 price if I would be willing to wait 4-8 weeks for them to arrive.  I was fine with that and ended up ordering 5 of these things for $108.20 with tax!
My thinking is that I'll have one for my mom, both of my younger sisters, my grandma, and myself - like diamond friendship necklaces for all my girls.  I'm hoping I can give them out all at once in September but they could still be considered birthday gifts for everybody since all of their birthdays fall between September and November.

Yeah, I'm a sucker and I'm cheap...this post is making me look really
So I'm okay with my purchase since I think they will be appreciated,  BUT I'd be $108 richer right now if I had never seen that special in the mail.

Have you been sucked in by a discount or special before?  Feel silly (like me) later?


  1. BFS, That is a big weakness of mine. If you take into account how much I spend on and other deal-a-day sites, I really should check myself into an addiction clinic!

  2. Jewelry is the hardest thing in the world for me to buy. I see no value in paying $200+ for a piece of metal around a finger, but alas I am married and enjoy my marriage so jewelry is a necessary evil.

    The worst deal I have made on Jewelry was last mothers day. My siblings and I wanted to get my mother a "mother's day ring" with all of our birth stones on it. Of course we looked online first for the best deal and found what looked like a nice right for right at $150ish. Two months later when I saw my mother wearing the ring I was sorely disappointed. I pride myself on making purchases with true value and the gems in the ring were the size of pin pricks. Needless to say I am a burned internet jewelry shopper and will stick only to the tangible shops for my jewelry fixes those few times a year.

    Great Post, keep up the great work!

  3. Speaking of Woot, I have big regret over buying a Roomba (vacuum) during a woot-off. My friend was telling me how great his was, blah blah. Sounded great. Well, I don't usually fall for gadgets, but this one I did.

    This purchase was dumb for a couple reasons:
    1. I am too busy to program the darn thing
    2. My kids do the vacuuming.

    What was I thinking?

    BFS- at least you bought a bunch of presents which will save you time and probably money, assuming you spend more than 20 dollars on gifts for your family. I wouldn't have any regret on that. At least you didn't buy 5 Roombas...

  4. I really wanted to go and get the special while I was reading your post. How sad is that? I not only get suckered by the discount, but I am a POP display's dream. It is something that I really have to watch with myself. Thankfully over the last few years, I am getting better and better at saying NO!

  5. Julie, Woot is diabolical…between Shirt Woot and ABC Distributing (or the Catalog of Crystal Crap as I lovingly refer to it), I have to watch myself.

  6. odysseustoday, LOL…yep, my husband is a lucky man. I’m actually not much into jewelry myself, but the idea of family friendship necklaces caught my fancy. Other than this necklace thing, I’m perfectly happy with the blue topaz set my mom gave me, the opal set my husband bought for me, and my wedding band and engagement ring. That’s all I ever wear.

    And I agree, buying jewelry online for others has burned me a few times as well, so now I only buy in stores.

  7. Kris, I feel your Roomba pain (especially since you already had kids to do it). :-(

    I actually liked the Roomba Schedular that we had. I could schedule it to run at a certain time and it would return to its recharging base by itself. I loved it. BUT, cheap berber carpet and the most sheddy dogs in the world killed it in under a year. We have since switched to wood laminate and I gave up on my Roomba dreams.

    My uncle and aunt are in the market though if you may be interested in reselling. :-)

  8. Kate, I intentionally waited until after the special was over to publish this post since I didn’t want to be blamed for bombing budgets. :-)

    You’re not sad, you’re human. Advertising wouldn’t exist if it didn’t work…that’s what personal finance blogs are good for though…we’ll help you say no, lol. :-)

  9. Odysseus, I like your view of jewelry as a necessary evil haha.

  10. Nice post, and a good story. Always nice to see a giving, thoughtful mindset.

    You know, I think all of us have been taken at one time or another. I can't remember a great example off the top of my head right now, but I'm sure if focus on it, I could come up with a bunch of example like we all could. Its funny how the mind works that way, blocking out some memories:)

    As for this situation - don't be so hard on yourself. Some things are worth more than money, you did well with your purchases based on the thought alone :)

  11. Well you 'saved'something like$600 from the list price, right? ($119?)

    So now you have $600 free dollars to spend! Woohoo. Now buy Mr. BFS an iPad.

    Like someone above said, you have pre-purchased presents for your sisters and others.
    PS What's a Woot?

  12. Squirrelers, thanks! Yeah, I don’t feel too bad about the necklaces, I just realized that the ad got me hook, line, and sinker, lol. :-)

  13. BillV, you make me laugh! I will NOT be passing along the Ipad suggestion, lol! He’d drool too much… :-)

    Woot is two things.

    1) “woot” means “yay” in geek speak. If I say or write “woot!”, that means I’m happy.

    2), Shirt Woot, Wine Woot, and a couple of other Woot web sites are shopping sites that sell one item a day at a cheap price until they are sold out. The original,, deals mainly with electronics. For example, they may sell a Roomba for $50 for one day as long as they are in stock. The next day would be something different like speakers, etc. They started Shirt Woot just to sell cool t-shirts for $10 if you get it that day or $15 if you buy it after the fact. I own like 20 funny t-shirts from Shirt Woot. These sites are addictive. You have been warned. :-)