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Make the Most of Post-Holiday Retail Sales

Pity the poor winter. We love it so when it delivers fluffy white snow for our storybook December holidays. But by January the trudge through the chill has entirely lost its charm. There’s little else the season can do to please us at this point, apart from making a hasty exit, but it does have one powerful ace up its sleeve -- the end-of-season sale.

We’re already finding plenty of low hotel rates and discounted airfares to sweep travelers out of a post-New Years slump, and now retailers across the country are pulling prices down too.

During a trip to New York City, for example, visitors can strut through the swank aisles of historic department store Bergdorf Goodman, where exotic skin handbags and shimmering jewel-toned cocktail dresses are as much as 60% off. After lining your suitcase with designer fashions, line your belly with a juicy steak or some festive margaritas.

Toward the end of the month, keep an eye on Barneys New York’s website for rumblings about their semi-annual warehouse sale. Usually staged in February in both NYC and Los Angeles, this bargain hunt is mobbed by shoppers who look like they’ve ambled out of street style blogs. All are racing to stockpile this trend-setting retailer’s leftovers, which veer from hand-tailored Italian finery to astro-space-cadet metallic accessories.

Chicago is another great town for discounts, full as it is with independent boutiques touting sophisticated designers. Newcomer Trilliumjust launched a winter sale on smart, preppy goods for men and women. A sweet little place called Le Dress which specializes in, well, dresses, is preparing for a storewide sale called the Winter White Out, an appropriate sale name for this city.

Shoppers nationwide should probably start lining up now for the Feb. 5 launch of Jason Wu for Target. Famous for wrapping the First Lady in his dreamy gowns, the designer created a French New Wave-inspired line for the  retailer, with an average price thousands of dollars less than his upscale main collection.

Deals will follow travelers out of the country too. There are always a billion reasons to visit Paris, including its standard-setting, history-making fashion industry. French law dictates when retailers are allowed to discount their goods, and that time usually falls in January and February. Bookmark this site for the most up-to-date offerings.

Even in Dubai, nestled as it is in a gilded lap of luxury, there are sales. The Dubai Shopping Festival, which goes until Feb. 5, offers substantial savings on fashions, cars, electronics and other goods arranged by country in an international-themed shopping village.

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Tips by

Deal Expert, New York
Thursday, January 5, 2012
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Ryan Haase