Is GROUPON worth it?

Ah, GROUPON.

Who doesn’t love a killer deal?

Whether it’s a dinner discount, big savings on a Mediterranean cruise, or 40% off a Dyson vacuum, GROUPON has you covered.

Or does it?

GROUPON can be a fantastic tool in helping you save money but it can also be a bust unless you know what you’re doing.

Here are my tips for being a savvy GROUPON customer.

Make sure to read the fine print before purchasing any deal.

Restrictions and exclusions are found in the fine print of every GROUPON deal which specify exactly when, how and where you can redeem your coupon.

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Example:

GROUPON is currently running a deal for Old Stone Inn Boutique Hotel in Niagara Falls. Perks include a wine tasting for two courtesy of Ostin Wine Tastings and a show at the Mystic Stone Lodge.

This is a great deal, but the fine print states that the Ostin Wine Tasting is only between the hours of 4-6pm. Show up at 7pm and you are out of luck. A major bummer if that was the main reason you booked the deal.

The fine print also states that just ONE ticket is included to the show at the Mystic Stone Lodge (even though your hotel reservation is for two).

These restrictions don’t have to be a deal buster, as long as you know beforehand and plan accordingly.

DON’T always assume that GROUPON has the best deal.

They don’t.

My rule of thumb before purchasing a deal is to do a quick price check for the product on Amazon, or check the actual retailer of the service or event you are interested in.

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Example:

GROUPON is currently running a discount for Elf the Musical tickets at Madison Square Garden with pricing as low as $52 per ticket.

I double checked the same show at Madison Square Garden for the same date, time and seating section on Ticketmaster and prices were as low as $45/ticket.

Ticketmaster has the better deal.

Beware that many of the electronic items are refurbished.

I got excited seeing Beats headphones by Dr. Dre were being offered on GROUPON only to see that they were refurbished. Same with an HP touchscreen laptop, Google Chromecast Streaming media player and an Apple iPad mini.

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To GROUPON’s credit they do clearly list that the product is refurbished in the product heading. Some refurbished products can be fantastic, just be aware of what you’re purchasing!

Read reviews of the product, service or vacation before you buy.

Just because GROUPON has the best deal on the microfiber sheet set you didn’t know you needed, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s worth your money.

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Example:

I recently saw a deal for an electric toothbrush for the killer price of $27. Regular price $172. Amazing deal, right?

I did a price comparison on Amazon and it was on sale for $58. Still a good deal.

Then I read the reviews.

There was a ton of negative feedback about the toothbrush not working after 7 months of use.

I decided this was no longer a good purchase and didn’t buy, even though GROUPON had the best price.

Bottom line is that GROUPON is worth it!

BUT only if you do the research required to make sure you are getting a good deal and getting the product or service you want.

What’s the best deal you’ve found on GROUPON?

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Lisa

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