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Snoop out the best deals in comfort, with these savvy shopping tips. Image: ST file photo

With the Great Singapore Sale 2014 now in full swing, it’s time to scout out the best shopping deals. Here’s how to survive the crowds while still grabbing the fab finds fast:

1. Do your homework
Plan your route and decide which shops you want to visit beforehand so that you maximise your time shopping. Visit websites like www.greatsingaporesale.com.sg to check out which stores and malls are holding relevant promotions and which credit cards are offering special deals, too.

2. Dress and prep to shop
Wear clothes that are easy to take off and put on so that the changing room experience is smooth. This means no to anything with too many buttons or straps. Shoes should also be easy to remove, such as ballet flats or flip flops. Tote a cross-body bag so your arms are free to browse, and if you can, pack a small water bottle so you stay hydrated throughout the day.

3. Think through your purchases
Come sale time, a lot of people go overboard with their purchases, lured by the prospects of good deals. To avoid that trap, imagine whether you would pay for the items even if they were full-price. If you would, they are good buys. If not, you are just falling for the discounts and not the items themselves.

4. Stay on budget
If you have trouble sticking to a budget, withdraw a specific amount of cash and force yourself to pay for goods from that limited amount. In addition to preventing unplanned overspending, the cash in hand makes people think twice about the amount paid compared to charging to a credit card.

5. Get your timing right
For best shopping conditions, aim for off-peak hours on weekdays or weekend mornings to avoid the worst crowds. Also check with sales staff when new stock arrives so you have the best picks, or if there are any upcoming sales you can wait for.

The Great Singapore Sale 2014 runs from now ’til July 27, 2014. Go to www.greatsingaporesale.com.sg/gss-2014 for more information.

This article was first run in The Straits Times newspaper on May 30, 2014. For similar stories, go to sph.straitstimes.com/premium/singapore. You will not be able to access the Premium section of The Straits Times website unless you are already a subscriber.