Yesterday afternoon I took the Sanitas back to the Shoe Mill in lovely downtown Tempe (for those of you who haven’t been following along, these pain-free shoes are made by the original makers of the formerly glorious Danskos, which are now manufactured in China thanks to a corporate change of hands). This put $129.72 back on the AMEX card. Then I ordered an identical pair from Footprints.com for a total of $79.95.
Tax on the local purchase was $9.72. Shipping for the online purchase was $10. So even though the tax was on a larger amount, I see that as kind of a wash.
My savings on this transaction: fifty bucks.
One thing I’ve discovered over the years is that you can return most things to most stores. If you find a better deal somewhere else before you’ve put any wear on an item, take the thing back to the higher-charging merchant and buy it where you can save some cash. Ditto if you realize you don’t need something after you’ve made an impulse buy. Obviously, you shouldn’t abuse this—buying a dress or a jacket to wear to a wedding and then returning it to the vendor is exploitive and dishonest. But if you haven’t used it at all, there’s no reason not to return it.