With no major shopping holidays in March, it’s easy to forget to check the sales ads. But steering clear of stores could mean missing out on some amazing deals, especially on items you’ll need in the next year.
Here are some of the best things to buy in March.
1. FROZEN FOOD
March is National Frozen Food Month, and nationwide initiatives by the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association will increase sales for retailers, while offering customers some of the best deals of the year on frozen goods. Look for sale notifications and recipes incorporating frozen foods in your social media feeds.
Grocery store ads aren’t the only places to find deals on freezer-section treats. To take advantage of the deepest discounts, combine coupons from sponsoring brands, such as Dole, Green Giant and Tyson Foods, with grocery store sales. Plus, look for printable and save-to-card savings on Coupons.com and EasyHomeMeals.com. Brands participating in National Frozen Food Month will offer more than 180,000 coupons that make frozen food among the best things to buy in March.
Frozen treats aren’t the only edible items on sale in March. Check out sales for St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, National Poultry Day on March 19 and National Ravioli Day on March 20 to save some cash on groceries.
2. BOXED CHOCOLATES
During the lead-up to Valentine’s Day, you can scarcely walk into a grocery store without seeing shelves laden with boxed chocolates. However, supermarkets and other shops have to clear out these heart-shaped candy containers in preparation for another treat-laden holiday. Easter is a sweet time of year for retailers, who saw an estimated $2.4 billion in candy sales in 2016. If you want to stock up on sugary treats, wait until March, when retailers put ordinary candy on deep discount to clear shelf space for Marshmallow Peeps and chocolate bunnies.
3. EXERCISE EQUIPMENT
Many people blow their diets on green beer for St. Patrick’s Day, but it’s easy to eat poorly during the rest of the month, as well. Nearly every day in March celebrates some type of food, from National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day on March 1 to National Clam on the Half Shell Day on March 31. If you can’t wait until Take a Walk in the Park Day — March 30 — to work off the extra pounds, take advantage of exercise equipment sales at this time of year. It is one of the best times to buy ellipticals and treadmills.
Now, for the worst things…
1. NEW CARS
Spring is the worst time of year to buy a new car. With the latest car models filling dealers’ lots, you’ll have a hard time finding discounted models from the year before. Even if you do find an overlooked 2016 model or used car, you probably won’t score the best deal in March. As early income tax filers start getting refund checks to pad their pocketbooks, car dealerships are less motivated to offer steep discounts from March through May.
Instead, plan to buy your car during the fall or winter. End-of-year discounts begin as early as August, so shop early if you have your heart set on a particular model. Do your homework so you can negotiate the best possible deal.
2. SPRING CLOTHING
When shirtsleeve weather makes you yearn to head outdoors, resist the urge to do so wearing the latest fashions. You won’t find March deals on swimsuits, Easter dresses or other spring wardrobe items.
Unless your smartphone took a swim and you’re desperate for a replacement, this device is among the worst things to buy in March. Instead, wait until later in the year, when phone manufacturers are expected to release new models.