The countdown is on to Amazon Prime Day 2018.
It begins at 3 p.m. Monday July 16th, and for the first time ever in its four-year history, it runs for 36 hours this time.
That's a lot of time to stare at your phone or computer screen. So to keep you from going crazy, we have some simple advice on how to shop it sucessfully and save money.
Shoppers getting ready
Susie Bierman, like many Amazon Prime customers, is looking forward to starting her back to school shopping on Prime Day.
"I am ready to spend some money," she said.
Van Dobbins also can't wait for the deals to begin. "I hate having to go in to stores and shop, and if I can order online and have it just show up at my house, that's definitely the first choice I make," he said.
But how do you wade through the thousands of deals of Prime Day? Unlike Black Friday, you can't see the deals days in advance and plan your shopping.
If it sounds a bit overwhelming, we have some shortcuts and secrets to take the stress out.
Steps to make it easier
The first thing you need to do is joinAmazon Prime. Obvious, but if you are not a member, you cannot participate.
Now, assuming you are already a member, the second tip is to download the Amazon app on your phone, to make it much easier to find deals, than by staring at a desktop or laptop screen all day.
And the third thing to do is to set alerts for things you are looking for, so you will know when they go on sale.
Consumer Reports Magazine says do this by creating a "Watch a Deal" list on something you are interested in, so you receive an alert your phone when that item goes 'live" on Prime Day, meaning the price has just dropped..
If what you want is already sold out, join a "Waitlist," And you will get alerted when someone drops it from their cart. Consumer Reports saysmany people load up their cart, then don't make a purchase in 15 minutes, at which point it is available again.
And be sure to turn on "1-click ordering," at least for one day, to make purchases so much easier.
What to buy, and not buy
Consumer Reports says this is a great day to buy an Amazon branded device, like an Echo, Kindle, or Fire TV Cube.
But it says Prime Day is not the best time to buy a big screen 4KTV, as those prices are much lower on Black Friday. It says Prime Day 2017 featured very few great TV deals.
And if you have the Amazon app, you may want to shop at Whole Foods this weekend, to get a $10 credittoward your first Prime Day purchase.
Finally, take Ruth Hill's advice when it comes to deals.
"I try to make sure its something I need, and not something I buy just because its on sale," she said.
Great advice, so you don't waste your money.
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