Remember when the only way to find out about a ‘friends-and-family’ deal was through a friend or family member? When the secret of a good sample sale was passed on from one pal to another like a precious gem?
Thanks to the miracle of the Internet, those days are over. Even the least connected of us can have easy access to the scoop on all kinds of bargains through group-buying and deal-listing websites.
So here’s the deal on deals these days:
Group-buying websites are all the rage. Offering daily deals on things like restaurant meals, event tickets and beauty treatments, you join the site and then watch daily for deals. If you like one, you can sign up to buy it—if a pre-determined number of people sign up as well, you get your deal. The original US-based player, Groupon.com, currently offers deals for Vancouver and Toronto. There is also a made-in-Canada company, Teambuy.ca, which offers a daily deal of 50–90% off local finds in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and Halifax (so far). And Canada’s original and biggest deal directory, RedFlagDeals.com, has a group-buying ‘Deal of the Day’ program in nine different cities.
US-based Livingsocial.com has deals in Vancouver and Toronto with their daily deals of up to 90% off on restaurants. What’s different about this site is that after you buy the deal (no minimum number of buyers required), you get a unique link to share with your friends—if three of them buy the deal, then you get your deal for free (shades of a Tupperware party, but it definitely works!).