One of the articles you asked us to write is about shopping in America.
The first thing we have to say is that if we want to buy something we have to go to the mall, a big area with lots of big stores one next to the other, local shops like the one we have in Italy don’t exist.
Another difference is that consumerism is very strong. Therefore there are often sales, even when it is not sales period, and the vary from 50%, to buy one the second is half price or 1$ and so on…
Discounts may be combined, so if you have more than one coupon you can add them together to get a super discount. In the supermarket you can even buy a coupon-holder to keep in your purse!Moreover in the stores there is also a section, usually at the end, that could be a small room or an exhibitor, called Clearance. There we can find all the things in super-sale.
All of this, for us coming from Italy, is amazing and can turn on our shopping obsession! But what we have to be aware of? Well prices are always without taxes, so we have to remember to add them to the product we want to purchase and the percentage varies States to States. Here a picture to summarize them all (for more info you can click this link)
At the moment euro is stronger than dollar and the products we found more convenient are:
- Technology: in fact we bought phone and laptop
- Clothes, shoes and purses: piles of clothes, shoes and purses to satisfy everyone tastes.
- Products for your body care and personal hygiene: In many stores they have family-size packages of shampoo, body wash, toothpaste, lotions, etc at a very convenient price. Something very useful for au pairs that have to buy them with their money.
- Art and Craft: as au pair it might happen that we have to buy materials to do some activities with our kids. It is good knowing that in America there are stores, or even just lanes inside the supermarket, very well supplied and much cheaper than in Italy
- Magazines Subscriptions: they are very convenient, so if you are bored in you morning you might consider subscribing to a magazine because we are talking about 15-20$ for a full year!
The most expensive things are
- Medicines, even hard to get
- Some Make-Up products, especially if branded
- Precooked food at the supermarket are very expensive and low quality. Better cook something home-made
We hope we were able to give you a panoramic as complete as possible.
If you had different experiences or if you wanna know the price of something in particular you can leave us a comment below.
Susa & Mapu