Maths is Hard – Let's Go Shopping

Jun 28, 2011


According to that famous philosopher, Barbie, “Maths is Hard – Let’s Go Shopping”

For the last few years I have been a confirmed Zazz man. Each day at midnight, Zazz offers one things for sale. It stays on sale for 24hours unless sold out beforehand. You get only one chance.

Zazz mainly offers electronic thingys – where else could you buy coffee warmers that plug into your USB port, or iPhone microscopes, or remote control micro-helicopters, or Roomba robotic vacuums. Over the years we’ve also got Bean Bags, Space Invades Wall Decals, mini light sabers and walkie-talkies. The descriptions of the items are generally the best copy you’ll read all day.

More recently, I’ve been tempted by Catch of the Day, which offers one main catch and a number of little catches. Catch of the Day has a more diverse range of goods which are more mainstream than zazz. The Catches on offer change at midday each day.

Scoopon is a ‘group buying’ subsidiary of Catch of the Day, and offers a special voucher to use at a local service. It may be a heavily discounted meal at a local restaurant, or accommodation, or a massage, or a car wash.

Group buying is relatively new in Australia. It is based on the phenomenally successful American site A bargain is offered for a limited time – but a minimum number of buyers must sign up before the deal is on. In practice, it seems the minimum number is always met. The deals you are offered vary according to the city in which you are located. For some random reason, Groupon thinks I am in St James, Newfoundland. Shakespeare by the Sea in Newfoundland, anyone? I guess at least it gives me more choices than it would if it knew I was in Alstonville.

A syndicate including James Packer scooped up large shares in Catch of the Day and Scoopon last month. Rumours are that there stake valued the company at $200 million. That’s no small fish.

Both Scoopon and Catch of the Day have apps that make it easy to keep up with the latest deal.

My mother in law’s house is a shrine to all things Aldi. Aldi also have an app, which features their weekly specials (which start on Thursdays). I’m into paellas at the moment, and this Thursday they have a cast iron paella pan for $29. Bet I beat you there on Thursday morning.

If you can’t get enough of buying cheap stuff that you don’t really need, you might like to check out, which aggregates all the Australian daily, weekly, group buying and catalogue offers. Somehow I feel it takes away some of the thrill of the hunt, really.

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