As all of us Gymboree addicts know, Gymboree runs several different types of sales throughout the year. Depending on what you are looking for, some of them are, naturally, better than others. Here is a quick overview. If you find this helpful, please don't forget to vote at the end:) Thanks and enjoy!
These sales are for select items which appear to be randomly selected by corporate. One week it will be sweaters, another it could be Pajamas, etc., that get marked down sometimes by 50% or even more while other pieces from the same line are still full price. Gymboree seems to have intensified the use of these sales over the past year, and the deals have been great. Excellent opportunity to buy for your own children if you were already planning on getting those pieces, and some are also great for resale purposes. When buying for resale, try to identify the "hot" items and, if possible, try to go for the items which have been marked down the most from their original retail price. This way, even if the line gets marked down 20% a day after the jingle deal, you've still got a better deal and if you want to resell immediately, you have a longer timeframe before other sellers can get the same price once the line has been discounted multiple times.
THE % OFF SALES
These sales are pretty random and there have been fewer of them over the past year or so. Typically, they are 20% sale on already reduced merchandise, but sometimes you'll see full price merchandise included as well. There are good deals to be found, especially if it's during Gymbucks earnings and you also have an additional % off coupon such as a Plum magazine coupon. These sales sometimes are centered around holiday weekends, such as Memorial Day, etc...
THE BABY SALES
These are run at least twice a year (usually during fall and sprig) and include lines from the layette and baby girl/boy collections. They are very good sales to buy clothes for your own children, since often times you can get items from the most recent (otherwise not yet discounted) lines for about 50% off. Not all sales are equally good, however, and not all pieces are equally great deals. During these sales, I like purchasing some of the signature, unique pieces from the newest lines, such as dresses, woven tops, or sweaters. Footed sleepers are usually marked down to $10 during these sales and if you have a further coupon or just your Gymbo visa you can get these new for about $8-9.50.
FRIENDS OF GYMBOREE
This sale is for 30% off any merchandise, full price and sale items. You need a coupon, which is usually handed out by employees during the weeks leading out to the event. If you sign up for email updates from the company, they usually also send an email coupon which you can print out and use. It's a great sale, especially if it happens to be during GB earnings (it doesn't always happen that way, though). You usually cannot use additional coupons, but you can still get an additional 5% off if you pay with the Gymboree Visa card.
RED BALOON SALE
Formerly named "Red Hot Dot Sale", these are price-point sales that are run 2-3 times a year. They include specific lines only, but the deals are great. All accessories are 99 cents or less, shoes and boots are 4.99-6.99, even winter coats are 9.99 or less, dresses about 6.99, tops 2.99-3.99. All in all a great sale and even better if you have additional % off coupons on top of it. I especially love it when these sales coincide with Gymbucks earnings. I would say this is the best sale for resale purposes.
BUY 2 GET 1 FREE
They haven't run one of these in a while but it's a nice sale. You purchase 2 items and the third (lowest value) is free. The trick to maximizing the discount is to buy three items which are all the same price, that way you get 33% off. Don't buy 2 tops for $9.99 each and a pair of socks for $3, because then you only save the $3, which is a much lower discount overall.
Gymbucks redemption seems to happen 3-4 times a year. Gymbucks are coupons you earn through purchases you make during the earning period. For every $50 you spend, you get a coupon for $25 off a future purchase of $50 or more. When used well, they amount to a 50% off discount on the future purchase. KEEP IN MIND GYMBUCKS CAN ONLY BE USED DURING THE ONE WEEK REDEMPTION PERIOD. IF YOU DO NOT USE THEM THEN YOU LOSE THEM. The trick to maximizing the discount is to make sure your future purchase is very close to $50 increments, i.e., if you have 1 GB, make sure your purchase is just over $50. That way, with $25 off, you've saved 50%. If your total purchase is $98, if you take $25 off, you've effectively saved only about 25%. So you need to do a bit of math. It's a great sale to buy new lines for your own children and some of the "hot" pieces from the new lines for resale.
Over the past year or so, Gymboree has been mailing out a variety of coupons. It seems frequent customesr don't usually receive them, as they are sent to people who do not shop there often in order to bring new customers in the stores. The coupons are awesome to stack on top of other sales (they are some restrictions, for instance they cannot be used during GB redemption) for the best possible prices. The PLUM magazine also has had a 20% off Gymboree coupon it the last two issues. It's definitely worth buing the magazine for the coupon - it pays for itself if your purchase is over $50. The latest coupon I've used came from the COOKIE magazine in the April 2008 issue, which costs just 3.99, so half the price of PLUM. I have found it at Barnes and Nobles, but I think many other book stores carry it as it seems to have a wider circulation compared to PLUM.
Important note about Gymboree coupons: In the past few months (I'd say this started in early 2008), it is becoming difficult if not impossible to use the same magazine coupon both in the store and online. This used to be routinely done before since you could used the unique number code for your online purchase and then the sales associate in the store would simply hit the PLUM key on the register when you wanted to use the same coupon in the store. Lately, most stores have started actually scanning the coupons in the store, which means the unique coupon code is already being used in the store and will not be valid for another use online. Similarly, if you've already used the coupon online, the sales associate will get a "not valid" message when she scans your coupon in the store. Just something to keep in mind when deciding how much a coupon is worth if you were to purchase it.