How to Shop Macy’s — 8 Ways to Save

Our content contains affiliate links, so know that we may earn a buck if you click and buy.

Hundreds of millions of people shop at Macy’s. The department store chain uses its 750 retail locations plus Macys.com to deliver a wide range of fashion, beauty and accessory items to fashionistas and fashionistos around the world. What Macy’s gives us huge selection and big sales — but the sales come so fast and furious that it’s a tad overwhelming. For that reason, I’m sharing this ultimate guide on how to shop Macy’s.

To get huge value out of your Macy’s shopping sprees, follow these 8 rules.

#1 Join Plenti

Macy’s has two loyalty programs, Macy’s Star Rewards and Plenti. I’d advise against Star Rewards, because it’s associated with your Macy’s credit card — and I don’t believe in store credit cards. (It’s way too easy to spend too much when you have a different credit account for every store.)

how to shop macy's - plenti rewards

You can join Plenti without having a Macy’s credit card. Plenti is a coalition loyalty program, which basically means you can earn and spend your loyalty points at multiple places. For example, you might earn points at Rite Aid and spend them at Macy’s. As a Macy’s shopper, you’ll do well with Plenti because:

  • You’ll earn double points when shopping at Macy’s.
  • You can use your points at the register to cover all or part of your Macy’s purchases.

#2 Shop a Season Behind

Macy’s carries a ton of inventory, and that means big after-season sales. I once purchased a versatile and warm Calvin Klein winter coat in February for $50. The coat has served me well, too — it’s been my go-to outerwear between December and March for two years running.

ckwintercoat

Calvin Klein Seamed Three-Button Coat, Originally $275, On Sale for $99.99, Macys.com

#3 Go to the Clearance Racks First

Before you head to the regularly priced goods, hit the clearance racks. And, if you’re really ambitious, head to a Macy’s that’s a little outside the beaten path. The clearance rack selections are often better at the Macy’s locations outside the city.

The trick to clearance-rack shopping is patience. Make sure you’re not in a hurry and keep looking. Assume that something in your size was put in the wrong place and do a spot check of other sizes. This attention to detail is almost always rewarded with a gem of a deal.

#4 Use the Price Scanner

Any store with a lot of inventory is going to have pieces put away in the wrong places. You don’t want to fall in love with a dress that you think is on sale, only to be met with a surprise at the register. Always (always!) check the price of everything before you try it on. If the price is outside your budget, return it to the rack before you walk into the dressing room.

#5 Skip the Shoes

Macy’s is my go-to store for deals on clothes, but I haven’t done very well in the shoe department. I usually spend too much time looking for a deal and then leave with nothing. (If you’ve had a different experience, share in the comments.) Skip the shoe section entirely and spend your time working the sale racks.

#6 Check Prices Online

After you’ve picked out your favorite pieces in the store, check the prices of those items on Macys.com. If there’s a lower price online, ask at the register if they’ll honor the web price. Clearance items will be difficult to find online, but you might uncover some good savings on regularly stocked items this way.

#7 Connect to In-store Wi-Fi

I learned this trick while waiting for my hubby to try on clothes. Log in to Macy’s Wi-Fi and you may (cross your fingers) be offered a coupon on the spot. It only takes a few seconds — well worth it if you’re rewarded with a 10% off coupon.

#8 Ask for Coupons at Checkout

No one knows what’s on sale better than the hard-working folks at the register. Ask them what’s on sale and if they have any coupons they can apply to your purchase. You’ll be surprised how often you get a positive response.

Fashionistas, do you have any other tips to share about shopping at Macy’s?

You also might like these:

  • Amaris

    Hi, I love Macy’s as well but could never find deals in the cosmetics/fragrance department. I’m planning to buy my daughter an urban decay primer that I’ve been religiously checking almost everyday online and for the last 3 months it never dropped a single cent. Since the $10 off $25 coupons never work on these types of item, I’m wondering if there is any tip you can share with me? Thanks in advance!

    • Catherine Brock

      Amaris,

      Unfortunately (as you’ve realized) Urban Decay products rarely are on sale in department stores. Are you a Plenti member? If you have time to earn some points and you live near Exxon/Mobile gas stations, you could start actively earning points on Plenti for your gas purchases. You can also earn Plenti points at AT&T and Rite Aid. Once you’ve accrued points, they’re super easy to redeem at Macys to take a bit off your bill. If you don’t have time for that strategy, I’d start scouring other retailers online to find the same product at a lower price.

      I hope that helps!

      Catherine

  • A Better “How- To-Guide”