Are you a big shopper? Do you enjoy spending hours in a mall, wandering aimlessly, looking at whatever catches your eye?
I was never a big shopper. Just ask my mom! Even as I grew older, I was never one to just spend hours in a mall. Although, I have learned that it’s all about the company. If I am walking with family or friends, I will be entertained for days.
I am usually a one and done person. Go the store that I think has the item I am looking for, pick it up, try it on or try and it, and head to the checkout lane. It’s that simple.
Until I met my husband, who taught me that it is worth the time and effort to shop around. We do not do our shopping around by driving around to different stores, but by shopping on the internet, and then heading to the store (if needed).
Is your time worth the money saved? Only you can answer that. We feel it is because it saves you numerous trips to countless stores, as you are trying to find that “right” item. Now, we do not have the privilege of having many shopping options where we live. We live 2 hours from Mall of America, which is really only a hop, skip, and step in our eyes because everything is far away. But since moving to Minnesota, it has really made us reflect on how much an item costs in the end.
It takes us 20-25 minutes to get to the nearest store. Not only is that time, but that is also gas. If we don’t find the item we need, the next nearest shopping city is 1 hour 20 minutes from our house, which usually means another day’s trip. So by the time we actually find the right store, we will have spent over 4 hours total, on the road.
To me, it is worth taking the time to shop around on the internet first. In fact, at that point, it is often cheaper to just PURCHASE the item on the internet, even if we would have to return it. The cost of shipping is cheaper than one trip to town.
I am all about supporting the small business though. If I can, I will. But when it comes to large retailers, I will shop around on the internet anyday.
Unfortunately (yes, I see this as a negative), we have so many options in America. We are very privileged, but it also causes greed, consumerism issues, and the “need to have” syndrome. We wouldn’t know that there is “better” out there if we didn’t know another option existed. For example, when my husband and I traveled to a few 3rd world countries on mission trips, we learned that bread is bread. Rice is rice. Beans are beans. There weren’t “options” of what kind to get. If you wanted beans, you picked up a bag of beans. There was definitely a simplicity to that.
That is why shopping around, is such a “privileged” option. Do we go back to the “if you find it, buy it” thought? That is where I struggle because of the money spent on markups. It’s a battle and we all have choices to make.
What are your thoughts?