If you are not in a hurry for your purchase, consider leaving your virtual shopping cart hanging for a few days. If you have created an online account with a merchant, place your items in the shopping cart but do not complete the purchase. After a day or two in limbo, a merchant will often email a coupon to encourage you to complete the transaction. When checking out at the mall, are you consistently asked to provide your emailaddress after the purchase? Although the idea of receiving extra coupons to stores where you shop is appealing, the idea of filling up your in-box with spam is often enough to make you pass. Consider setting up a free email account that you can use only for retailers. You will not need to check the account often, but when you are ready to make an online purchase, you can search the account for recent coupons. Remember to safeguard your personal information when online shopping. You are entering a tremendous amount of personal information (your name, phone number, address, etc., not to mention your credit card information). Always make certain that you are using a personal/home computer for online shopping. Public computers, such as those at work or the public library, may store your information that someone could access later. Be certain that the website you are using is secure. Once you enter into the shopping cart phase of a website, the web address should have a “s” after the http. The “s” indicates that your data will be transmitted securely. Also, be certain that you are on a legitimate retailer’s site. Knock-off websites do exist and at times it may be difficult to tell the difference from the real thing. By Jennifer Hunter, Ph.D., University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension ServiceOnline shopping has a lot of appeal because it is fast, easy, and convenient. Last year, consumers spent $2 billion online on Cyber Monday, the Monday following Thanksgiving. As more and more purchases are made online, consider these tips to score the best deals:Before you buy, look for coupon codes. Coupon codes are normally a series of letters or numbers that you enter when checking out online. If you are a member of the website’s mailing list, you probably regularly receive coupon codes via email. If not, simply type the name of the online merchant and the words “coupon code” into an internet search engine. Typically, the coupon code will be for free shipping, upgraded shipping, or a percent off merchandise purchased. Be certain to check the expiration date and details of the coupon code; you may be required to spend a certain dollar amount to receive the benefit. Daily deal websites are growing in popularity. Daily deal sites offer products and/or services at discounted prices, often 50% or more off retail. Typically someone who has signed up for daily deals will receive either email or social media alerts to the “deal of the day.” There is no doubt that daily deals offer the opportunity to grab some great items at significant discounts; however, you may also be tempted to buy an item or service that you don’t really need or hadn’t planned on purchasing. Normally, daily deals are offered for a limited amount of time and have limited quantities available, often encouraging the buyer to make an impulsive decision in an attempt to avoid missing the big savings. If the daily deal is for a product or service that you use often, it may make sense to snatch the item quickly, but be cautious not to just click buy because it is such a great deal. Be certain that it is an item or service that you need and will use. Use a credit card, as opposed to a debit card, when shopping online. When you pay with a credit card there is a period of time between when you make the purchase and when you pay your credit card bill. This gives you time to dispute a charge if something goes wrong with the transaction. When you pay with a debit card, you are authorizing the retailer to go ahead and debit your account. Most likely you will still be able to successfully dispute a charge, but the money will be missing from your account until the dispute is settled.Contact Jennifer at [email protected]
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The Indian team poses for a photograph at the glorious Old Trafford football pitchThe Indian team, on Thursday, witnessed a horrendous start to their first innings as England seamers made full use of their pace and swing to bamboozle the tourists on the opening day of the 4th Test at Old Trafford.MS Dhoni’s men were reduced to a shambolic 8/4 within the first six overs of play. But, what turned out to be more embarrassing for the tourists was the fact that three out of top four Indian batsmen were dismissed for golden ducks.Team India finally succumbed to a horrific total of just 152 runs with Dhoni’s valiant knock of 71 runs the only silver lining in the innings. England speedster Stuart Broad turned out to be the tormentor with six wickets but James Anderson, claiming three scalps, was the real trouble-maker for the Indians.Virat Kohli departs after being dismissed by James Anderson for a golden duckThe dismal performance of the Men in Blue sparked an array of controversy theories on social media including Twitter. While some blamed Virat Kohli’s girlfriend Anushka Sharma’s lip-job for the Indian batsman’s poor show, the others targeted the comeback man Gautam Gambhir.But, one of the most interesting yet ridiculous causes for India’s debacle on the opening day seems to be their highly-publicized tour of the Premier League club Manchester United on Wednesday.Dhoni, an ardent Red Devils fan, led the Indian team on the tour of ‘Theatre of Dreams’, home of the Manchester United football club – who witnessed a disappointing run in the Premier League last season.advertisementThe EPL giants, who were also the reigning champions, crashed to a seventh-place finish with a mere 64 points – 22 adrift Premier League champions Manchester City – last season.Wayne Rooney & co. sent 67,000 adoring fans at Old Trafford into mourning with just 19 wins out of 38 league games – a new low according to the standards of the glorious club.The Indian players got themselves clicked in the club’s dugout and kicked a few balls into the nets on the glorious Old Trafford football pitch.And, it seems like Manchester United have successfully transferred their disheartening curse onto Dhoni’s men – currently matching the club’s performance last season.Atleast, the Man Utd fans shouldn’t worry about their club getting hammered this season, especially under the reigns of the new manager Louis van Gaal.