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Learn the Price Tag Hacks That Can Score You Extra Deals at Costco

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You’re pretty much always guaranteed to find a bargain while shopping at Costco, but you can score even bigger savings by keeping your eyes peeled for certain price codes, according to self-proclaimed Costco expert Len Rapoport. Writing for finance website ToughNickel, Rapoport broke down the secret signifiers on price tags that can inform shoppers which items are marked down, specially priced, or only available in limited quantities.

Regular items typically have prices ending in $.99, but Costco reportedly uses $.97 tags to identify products that haven't sold well and are now marked down for clearance. These indicate that you're getting an even better deal than usual.

The same idea goes for items ending in $.88 or $.00, which Rapoport says are usually displayed "on a flat truck" or in a special area of the store and are code for manager markdowns on returned (but still sellable) goods. The store is trying to get rid of the product extra-fast—and you might be happy to help them out, and save a few extra dollars while you're at it.

While price tags labeled with an asterisk in the upper right-hand corner don’t signify a discount, they do let you know that the item in question won’t be restocked, meaning it's a good time to stuff your cart with any remaining inventory before it disappears. (These products sometimes pop up on shelves again if they’re seasonal, so fear not if you missed out on splurging on Christmas decorations.)

Skeptical shoppers might think these hacks sound too simple to be true, which is why Snopes investigated Rapoport’s Costco claims. Store employees and managers alike verified his $.97 and $.00 discount and markdown theories "are in most cases correct," adding that, "It’s not really a code, more just a set of rules that we follow to track pricing and be consistent throughout the region."

They also agreed that asterisks are indeed used on tags for “deleted,” or discontinued items. "Sometimes that means Costco couldn’t get the same product at the same purchase price, or it didn’t sell very well, or a repackaging is coming," Snopes explains. "After the warehouse sells the product it has on hand in the store it won’t be restocked, so the average shopper should take it as 'get it now because that’s all there is.'"

Here’s to a future filled with sweet savings on everything from 36-packs of paper towels to electronic massage chairs.

[h/t ToughNickel]

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7 Science-Backed Ways to Improve Your Memory
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Being cursed with a bad memory can yield snafus big and small, from forgetting your gym locker combination to routinely blowing deadlines. If your New Year's resolution was to be less forgetful in 2018, it's time to start training your brain. The infographic below, created by financial website Quid Corner and spotted by Lifehacker Australia, lists seven easy ways to boost memory retention.

Different techniques can be applied to different scenarios, whether you're preparing for a speech or simply trying to recall someone's phone number. For example, if you're trying to learn a language, try writing down words and phrases, as this activates your brain into paying more attention. "Chunking," or separating long digit strings into shorter units, is a helpful hack for memorizing number sequences. And those with a poetic bent can translate information into rhymes, as this helps our brains break down and retain sound structures.

Learn more tips by checking out the infographic below.

[h/t Lifehacker.com.au]

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The Only Way to Answer ‘What Is Your Greatest Weakness?’ In a Job Interview
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Thanks in part to the influence of Silicon Valley and its focus on the psychological probing of job applicants, interview questions have been steadily getting more and more abstract. As part of the interview process, today's job seekers might be asked to describe a vending machine to someone who’s never seen one before, or plan a fantasy date with a famous historical figure.

Even if the company you’re approaching isn’t fully on board with prodding your brain, at some point you may still come up against one of the most common queries applicants face: "What is your greatest weakness?"

"Some 'experts' will tell you to try and turn a strength into a 'weakness,' to make yourself look good," writes Inc. contributor Justin Bariso. "That advice is garbage."

"Think about it," Bariso continues. "Interviewers are asking the same question to countless candidates. Just try and guess how many times they hear the answers 'being a perfectionist' or 'working too much.' (Hint: way too often.)"

While responding that you work too hard might seem like a reliable method of moving the conversation along, there’s a better way. And it involves being sincere.

"The fact is, it's not easy to identify one's own weaknesses," Bariso writes. "Doing so takes intense self-reflection, critical thinking, and the ability to accept negative feedback—qualities that have gone severely missing in a world that promotes instant gratification and demands quick (often thoughtless) replies to serious issues."

Bariso believes the question is an effective way to reveal an applicant’s self-awareness, which is why companies often use it in their vetting process. By being self-aware, people (and employees) can correct behavior that might be affecting job performance. So the key is to give this question some actual thought before it’s ever posed to you.

What is your actual greatest weakness? It could be that, in a desire to please everyone, you wind up making decisions based on the urge to avoid disappointing others. That’s a weakness that sounds authentic.

Pondering the question also has another benefit: It prompts you to think of areas in your life that could use some course-correcting. Even if you don’t land that job—or even if the question is never posed to you—you’ve still made time for self-reflection. The result could mean a more confident and capable presence for that next interview.

[h/t Inc.]

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