With the New Year just underway consumers frustrated by rising fuel and food prices may have a silver lining if they are contemplating a “big ticket purchase or trip in the short term” predicts Jack Plunkett, chief executive of market research firm Plunkett Research. According to Plunkett, in Smart Money’s “5 Deals to Look Forward to in 2012” competition between online retailers and brick and mortar stores will generate more deals for consumers in 2012.
The five deals Smart Money recommends consumers should track are:
- Consumer electronics. Over the past 12 months TV prices have dropped substantially and that’s not expected to reverse as manufacturers launch the latest in consumer electronics in January and February.
- Text-message plans. Take a look at your test messaging plan and determine whether you still need it especially in light of applications that let you message for free. Check out Smart Money’s article “How to Save $500 on Your Cellphone This Year” for more cellphone saving ideas.
- European Travel. US travelers may be able to save money traveling to Europe for the first time in years due in large part to the European debt crisis. Keep an eye on fairs with the Bing.com price predictor.
- Wine. If you enjoy a nice bottle of wine, 2012 should also usher in better deals on your favorite vino. As the boutique wineries bounce back you can search for good deals on wine at sites such as Invino.com, Lot18.com and Gilt Taste.
- Interest Rates. All signs still point to low interest rates at least for the first half of the year. You can track interest rates at sites DepositAccounts.com and Bankrate.com.
Once you are ready to shop don’t forget to:
- Go online to compare prices and complete purchases.
- Look for special smart phone apps from your favorite retailers for more product deals.
- Get on your favorite retailers’ e-mail lists for special offers.
- Follow your favorite brands on Twitter and Facebook pages for even more specials.