Washington’s Birthday, also known as Presidents’ Day, is a federal holiday held on the third Monday of February. This year it falls on February 17th. Most retailers celebrate with Presidents’ Day Sales. I have been perusing the major retailers websites and seeing some good deals at Macy’s, Kohls, JC Penny, Sears and Walmart. Expect in store and online savings of 20% – 50% all weekend long.
So is it worth the drive? $1.00 U.S. will cost you $1.10 CDN before bank or credit card fees so you are really looking at $1.13. I have long stated that smart cross-border shopper can realize savings of 30% – 50% if they do their homework before heading out and shopping wisely. 13% is our HST in Ontario, tax added to pretty near all purchases. If your shopping in NY the State has eliminated sales tax on all clothing and shoes if a single item is priced under $110. However each municipality and county add on 3% to 4.75%. So depending on where you are shopping the sales tax can be either 4.75% or 8.75%. At worse case this is still 4.25% less than ontario so you just dropped the loonie difference down to 8.75%. If shopping for electronics there are no Eco Fees. These can add upwards of $30.00 on an electronics purchase in Ontario PLUS 13% HST on the Fee.
Maximizing savings through Rewards Programs, Coupons and other incentive will more that equal the difference in the loonie. My wife received discounts equal to $142.09 on a $183.15 bill this week at Kohls by looking for deals, using multiple coupons and incentives.
Tips to enjoy a money saving Presidents Day weekend of cross-border shopping; do your research online checking out store flyers and specials, order online for in store pickup, check the cupboards for the need now and will need soon items like dishwasher and laundry detergent, OTC medications like cough mixture and pain relievers. If the car needs an oil change or maintenance get it done in the U.S. Fill up the tank. If you have nothing to do consider spending the weekend to maximize your duty free limits and travel with others, the kids, grandma! They all get the same Duty Free limit.