Proving that it’s never too early to think about holiday shopping, Toys R Us announced Thursday that it will match competitors’ prices for the 2013 holiday season for its Toys R Us and Babies R Us stores. The list of major retailers that price match also includes Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy and Target.
There are a few caveats, however. First and foremost, Black Friday is excluded. While disappointing, it’s not at all surprising since Black Friday price matching was excluded by most retailers last year as well. Second, Toys R Us price matching will take shipping charges into account, matching the total cost it would take to get an item to you, not just the retail price.
Not to be outdone, Walmart also announced this week that they will be waiving all layaway fees for 2013. Last year, Walmart initially planned to charge $15 for layaway but lowered the fee to $5 after a flood of customer complaints, so it’s a remarkable development that the retail giant is waiving the fee altogether for 2013. Walmart layaway will be available on September 13, three days earlier than in 2012, and will run through December 13. Same as last year, a $50 minimum purchase is required, as well as a 10% or $10 down-payment (whichever is greater).
And just in case you thought all of this holiday shopping news is coming too early, just remember that the National Retail Federation reports that 40% of consumers begin their holiday shopping before Halloween.