For those that turn to retail for their therapy, Orlando is more than sufficiently worthy of catering to your theraputic needs. The shopping opportunities here are truly a shopper's dream. The key to hunting out the big sales bargains in the US is like anywhere else, simply keep your eyes open. There are not as many sale ‘seasons’ as we are used to in the UK, but virtually every store will have a sale at some point throughout the year and at times at random intervals for no reason at all other than to boost flagging profits.
These sporadic sales are especially worth seeking out in the malls, as the mall's shops are generally more expensive than the outlets dotted around Orlando and sell more current merchandise. If you are lucky enough to stumble upon a sale in the malls you are most certainly on to a winner. You will undoubtedly find some serious bargains, plus the value for money combined with the exchange rate make for a perfect excuse for a complete blow out!
The largest shopping sale is the nation's Black Friday, taking place the day after one of America's biggest public holidays, Thanksgiving. Black Friday is a mad free-for-all at the shops! Put simply, the Friday after Thanksgiving is like the UK Easter, Summer, Christmas and New Year sales rolled into one.
Black Friday, put plainly is an absolutely immense shopping phenomonon. Stores open at 5am, in some cases even earlier, in an attempt to accomodate the mad stampede of bargain hunters. It is hardly surprising how many people make it their business to be in the shops at five in the morning when many retailers shop windows entyce shoppers with a '90% off' banner. Promotions can be dependent on time and limited by quantity; a particularly desirable item may only be discounted between five and six am or only the first ten will be sold with a 90%discount.
Naturally the car parks for all shopping outlets will inevitably be packed by 9am and although this relentless bargain-hunting continues all day, the best bargains will be had earlier in the day. However, be assured that whatever time you embark on your shopping endeavours, you will come away with great savings, even on the usual lower priced goods you find in America.
If you are really keen, it wouldn't hurt to join the queue of shoppers who arrive an hour or two before the shops open. Moreover, if you're after the highly coveted discounts on electrical goods, it wouldn't be unheard of to camp outside the store - the fact of the matter is, for quality electrical goods with Black Friday's significant discounts you will need to be atleast the third person in the shop!
The newest trend in Black Friday sales are sales with exceptional savings starting earlier in the week, be sure to watch out for these pre-Friday sales too! If you happen to be in Orlando over the Thanksgiving period you most certainly are in for a treat.
Shopping During the Christmas Season
Shopping during the Christmas season is is geared specifically towarda children. Some shops offer a Kid’s Shopping Day (or evening), where ‘Santa’s Helpers’ take the children through the store, helping them pick out a gift for Mum and Dad. Look for these shopping dates in the sales ads or online at the store’s website.
After Thanksgiving Day, you will also find a handful of regular sales events which are also worth noting. On Market Street in Celebration town, the high street of the small town owned by Walt Disney World, amidst some extremely tempting high end restaurants, you will find a number of interesting boutique-style shops which offer two sales events each year, the Winter Sidewalk Sale and the Summer Sidewalk Sale.
Alongside residents selling their own goods in an annual Porch and Yard sale, vendors bring the merchandise from their boutiques onto the streets and offer their goods at promotional prices. The shopping event is complimented with entertainment and activities, making these sales a major community weekend.
Shopping Tips and Links
- The end of July is highlighted by a Tax Free Shopping extravaganza in many of the Florida shops, with all back-to-school items offered tax free. The promotion includes a huge variety of goods, from clothes, trainers and much more.
Prime Outlets on International Drive has recently joined Orlando Premium Outlets and has accordingly been renamed Orlando Premium Outlets International Drive. Subsequently there are now two Premuim Outlets in Orlando, the aforementioned and the accustomed outlet on Vineland Avenue. While both outlets host many of the same shops, each centre does have its own individual stores.
- Orlando Premium Outlets International Drive shops
- Orlando Premium Outlets Vineland Avenue shops
- A list of seasonal savings at Premium Outlets
- If you want the full lowdown on all the main sales and bargains on a weekly basis, the local Orlando Sentinel on a Sunday is filled with an abundance of shopping inserts and sales news which highlight where all the main bargains will be.
- Regular shopping features and updates can be found on The Orlando Sentinel
- Check out Attraction Tickets Direct's Shopping Extravaganza Tour!