Tips for saving money at Target? Be wary of this list

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A BuzzFeed article "16 secrets for shopping at Target that will blow your mind," is making the rounds on social media. But before you march into your local Target armed with the information in the post, take a look at the story on Snopes.com. It debunks the part of the article that explains how to decipher Target's discount codes on pricetags.

The BuzzFeed story says that if one of Target's orange-bordered clearance price tags "...ends in a $.06 or a $.08, the item will be priced down again." It continues, "If a price tag ends in $.04, it is final clearance and won't be marked down again."

Snopes.com, a website devoted what it calls "urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation," says the price tag code story is false. Target spokesperson Jessica Deede told the website that mark-downs vary by store.

"Target uses a variety of different factors when detecting the price and level of a discount for an item so just because the price ends in four or eight doesn't mean that's an indication as to how many times or whether the item will be marked down again," she said.

The BuzzFeed story also states that Target has a schedule for what days it marks down items by category, with, for example, Monday being the day to find discounted electronics and Tuesday as the first day for price cuts on women’s clothing. The Snopes.com post says that's bogus, too, again quoting a company rep who said Target's prices are based on a variety of factors, "...and they're subject to change at any time — stores don't necessarily know in advance which prices may be marked down further, price markdowns aren't uniform across the chain, and markdowns for various classes of merchandise don't occur only (or regularly) on certain days of the week."

These kinds of dubious tips have been posted before. A similar "How to save money at Target" story, posted in 2012, still comes up on YahooShine, a page devoted to budgeting. That post also includes the information about clearance price tag coding and days for deals.

In 2012, a version of the story was all over Pinterest. Business Insider debunked the details with a Target rep, noting "...the pin is an Internet hoax." Pinterest itself acknowledges the post that was on its site was flawed. It is included on a page called "Abysmal failures, tricks and hoaxes on Pinterest."

Back to the BuzzFeed story circulating right now. It links to the KrazyCouponLady website and repeats its apparently flawed information. The BuzzFeed post does include some information that is right on the money for Target shoppers looking to pinch some pennies. Most of the facts about maximizing the chain's coupons, REDcard and return policies link directly to the policies enumerated on Target's website.

A good tip that was not included in the BuzzFeed story is on the AllThingsTarget website. "The best way to know if an items is at it’s lowest markdown is if it’s at 70 percent off, that is the last markdown level on merchandise at Target (with the exception of holiday/seasonal merchandise, they go down to 90 percent off). If you see an item at 70 percent off, that will be the lowest it will go," the post said.

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