Anchorage, Alaska — Mother’s Day shopping is expected to total a near-record high this year as the National Retail Federation predicts consumers will spend $23.1 billion on gifts. Popular Mother’s Day items include flowers and jewelry, two industries that have already received an estimated 43,000 inquiries and nearly 200 complaints to Better Business Bureau Northwest + Pacific in the past year.
BBB is warning consumers to beware of unethical sales practices and scams while shopping for mom. Here is some motherly advice to consider when doing your last-minute shopping:
- Be a savvy shopper. Take your time and read the fine print. This includes the added fees for shipping, handling, and delivery. Review your order and verify the total before confirming your purchase.
- Read the description. Online photos use a perfect setting and professional lighting to make the products look as attractive as possible. Your final product may not look quite the same. Make sure you know what you’re getting by reading the full description.
- Don’t be deceived by promotions. Mother’s Day is a popular time for online promotions, but most have terms and conditions. Check that you’re getting the savings you expect.
- Know the delivery method. Some companies have different delivery methods: same-day, international, standard, guaranteed delivery. Be sure you know which delivery service you are paying for and that you have allowed enough time.
- Pay with a credit card. Credit cards provide additional protections and are often easier for disputing charges. Debit cards, prepaid cards, or gift cards don’t have the same protections as a credit card.
Mother’s Day is a great opportunity to shop at neighborhood florists and other businesses. In-person visits will eliminate confusion and guarantee the quality of the products. To find local accredited businesses this Mother’s Day, download the BBB App at bbbapp.org.