NEXT shoppers should cancel any plans ahead of the store's bonanza sale, which is rumoured to start this weekend.
The sale happens annually, and eagle-eyed fans have spotted several clues that suggests that this year it will be starting on Saturday March 23.
There should be great bargains on offer, with discounts apparently starting at 50 per cent off.
It is not yet clear how high the discounts will go, but in the January sale shoppers could get as much as 70 per cent off selected lines.
What date is the sale and what time does it start?
Next has not yet confirmed when the sale will begin but all the clues point to it happening this Saturday, 23 March.
The first hint comes from changes to the retailer's store opening times, which have been moved to 7am on Saturday rather than the usual 9am.
We checked opening times at the Oxford Street Next, the Bullring in Birmingham, Argyle Street in Glasgow, Trinity Shopping Centre in Leeds and the Trafford Shopping Centre in Manchester and they all say they're opening at 7am that day.
Opening hours can very from store to store so you should check your local's times here before you head to the shops.
Another clue that the sale will be this weekend is that Next has been recruiting temporary staff.
Money Saving Expert spotted the job ad which is for staff to join the team for the "Spring Mid-Season Sale".
It says that the roles are for a couple of days a week, "most likely to include working Friday 22nd and / or Saturday 23rd March 2019, depending on the store."
The job ads also hint at how long the sale is expected to last.
Next says that the roles will last for "up to three week's work" implying that the sale might be over by then.
How to make the most of the Next Spring sale
THESE tips from a Next employee can help you make sure you bag the best bargains this weekend.
- Familiarise yourself with the stock – check in store and online to see what items you might fancy, that means you'll be able to act fast once prices start dropping. Online you can even bookmark your favourites.
- Check online – often the sale launches online before stores open so go digital to get the best bargains.
- Consider the VIP scheme – If you have a credit account you can get access to the sale 24 hours before the rgeneral public.
- Choose the right store – smaller outlets are likely to be less rammed, so you may have less competition for great deals
- Shop late in the day – around two hours before closing, staff start replenishing stock for the next day, this is a great time to hit the stores.
- Look at ticket codes – if you're in a next keep an eye out for black dots on tickets, chances are that means an item is going to be discounted, so you're better off waiting till the price drops.
- Homeware and women's clothing sells fastest – so you might want to get to stores first thing for these items
Will the sale be online as well as in stores?
It looks like shoppers will be able to pick up great discounts online too.
Next customers on Twitter and the Money Saving Expert forums have received emails offering them VIP sale slots.
This adds to the evidence that the sale will begin this weekend and also indicates that deals will be available online.
Twitter user Sue Stafford tweeted that her VIP slot came through yesterday morning.
In the the Boxing Day sales, Next customers online got access a day earlier than those shopping in store.
How can I get a Next VIP sales slot?
VIP slots are offered to customers who have a Next flexible credit card.
There's a list of stringent criteria to get a slot.
To be selected, customers must:
- Have a Next flexible credit account with at least £250 credit available.
- Have placed and kept an order from the Next Directory within the last year.
- Have an up to date email address registered with Next, and be registered to receive sale and promotional emails.
- Have received a copy of the Next Directory.
- Have returned less than two thirds of the items they’ve ordered.
Time slots are restricted to one slot per customer but you can update your slot at any time.
All slots are allocated on a first come, first served basis and the number of slots are limited.
Next customers are saying that the earliest possible slots are for tomorrow, which suggests that the online sale could start on Friday.
Users advise getting the first slot you're offered as you're likely to get better deals.
Even if you haven't had an email yet, telling you to book your slot, it's worth logging into your account on a computer as some customers are saying you can get access to slot booking anyway.
Think carefully before taking out any store card though.
The interest rates can be very high, so you want to make sure you can pay them off in full each month.
Otherwise the amount you pay in interest will wipe out the savings you make in the sale.
What is likely to be included in the sale?
We don't know for sure what exactly will be included in the Spring sale, but we can guess based on previous years.
The departments that usually feature are womenswear, menswear, children and baby fashion, home and furniture and branded fashion.
Items ranged from dress, shoes, suits and shirts to large furnishings and home accessories.
MoneySavingExperts Laura says: "Next sales are always popular with MoneySavers, as items are usually at least 50 per cent off rather than the more common "up to 50 per cent" you tend to see in sales elsewhere.
"Next also rarely offers other discounts and has just four main sales a year.
"In previous sales, strong discounts included women's tops for £5 (were £18) and men's shorts for £8 (were £18), so I'd expect to see similar this time."
The Sun has contacted Next to confirm all the details about the sale, but so far the retailer is staying tight-lipped.
We will update this story when we know more.
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