Maximizing Outlet Trips...

With all the competition for your money, you must wonder about outlets, flash sale sites, big box stores, etc.

Today, we will focus on Outlets in NY the two major are Woodberry Commons and Tanger Outlets.

I'll give my take on Woodberry Commons  because of the country like feel also, they have all major designers from Chanel, Jimmy Choo, Williams Sonoma, to GAP, Godiva--yes Godiva, Gucci, Ann Taylor, Lladro, Lane Bryant, you get the picture.

The key to maximizing your outlet trip is to go during a major holiday weekend, go early, wear comfortable shoes, bring a snack, and plan out what stores you want to go to in advance.

Trips to Woodberry Commons from Manhattan round trip from Port Authority cost $44.00 on major sale days, you can get on an early bus from 5:30 am it is a 90 min. trip. Trust me it is worth the cost, because you can spend up to an hour looking for parking and closer to closing it will take you an hour, to get out of the parking lot.

OK, so why major holiday weekends and not your local mall?

Outlets contain items that are last season's merchandise, merchandise that didn't match the demographics of the retailer, and discontinued items.

So, you can get  great buys at the lowest price possible, also there are many lines to get into popular stores such as Coach, Gucci, Jimmy Choo; however you may get a coupon on already marked down merchandise.

I went to Woodberry Commons last Columbus Day weekend and I was able to get great finds:

First stop Coach store:1 Coach bag normally 350.00 for 150.00, two wristlets normally 90.00 for 50.00 and I had an additional coupon for 30 percent off the entire purchase. You do the math...

Then I headed to Lladro, my mother loves this store, but the average price of things on the 5th Avenue store start at $300.00, it was also my parent's 50th Wedding Aniversary- they had the exact replica of a bride and groom from that era. It was originally, over $700.00, however it was a discontinued item so it was marked down to $140.00, I also had a coupon for an additional 25 percent off. Needless, to say Mom was elated and so was my bank account.

William Sonoma was my next stop and for my professional chef sister, I was able to add to her library by two hard cover coffee table books for under $20.00 and for my kitchen two sets of dish towels for under $10.00.

Then I headed to Off 5th- Saks Fifth Avenue store, bought a couple of things, then for the men in my life--Dad, nephews, and brother- in - laws, I went to Brooks Brothers for their classic ties, they did give free boxes, which at their 5th Avenue Store they charge.

The campus is really big, that's why you have to plan what stores you are going to check out before going. Also, lines outside the store can be long, so wear comfortable shoes or sneakers, and bring an energy bar because once you get inside it can be a little harried.

During these days, I wouldn't recommend bringing the elderly or young children, teens would get a kick out of it and they would Instagram their purchases.

The only downside is once a particular item is out of stock, that's it...I went to the Burberry store a bit too late because their classic Burberry scarves were sold out : (

In terms of a food court? There is one but during major holidays it is crowded and once again you are losing valuable time if you want to snag some deals on Tory Burch, or Crate and Barrel.

However, I did notice on the bus, several women who ate lunches, as the bus was 20 min. away, they told me they do this all the time, this way they can focus on shopping and not stop for food.

How sweet it is... my final purchase of the day was a 1 pound of Godiva almond toffee bark for under $10.00.

As I boarded the bus back to the city, I closed my eyes elated by my purchases as I rewarded myself with a piece of the delicious candy.

Life is Grand; especially during the holiday shopping season at Woodberry Commons.

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