I can’t possibly have been the only crazy person up past 2am waiting in a virtual queue at Big W early on Tuesday morning! Surely if I were I wouldn’t have been placed in a line with an approximate wait time of OVER an HOUR.
This late night toy hunt isn’t anything new to me. In fact I’ve been dragging my hubby out of bed to go on this nighttime adventure for years now! That’s just how dedicated I am to the excitement of it all. I treat it as some kind of date night – I get my dad to come over and watch the kids as they sleep whilst my hubby and I race off… to shop for toys.
I’d say that this toy extravaganza was possibly what sent me into labour six years ago. All that walking and lifting of toys into different trolleys can really take it out of a person – especially a heavily pregnant one!
This year was the first time that I got to experience the hype virtually, and I was still super excited. So excited in fact that I kept my hubby awake for company. I mean it wouldn’t have been the same experience without him there.
We watched a movie whilst waiting for our turn to access Big W’s website and somehow it just felt more exhausting than if we were actually there in store with all the bright lights, beautifully laid out store, friendly and helpful staff to make the whole experience feel complete.
No Adrenaline Rush
There was no adrenaline rush… for me at least… I mean I doubt my hubby feels any sort of rush during the entire experience other than that of wanting to get home to our bed at the end of it all.
By the time I was able to access their site I was already falling asleep. But I had a list and the burning desire not to allow this long-standing family tradition to die. After all, I had already lost Target and their toy sale, I couldn’t not support the only company insane enough to still be running a late night gig!
The Elusive MUST HAVE Item
I decided to search for my most wanted toy first, the one MUST HAVE Christmas item, and I was met with “Due to unforeseen shipment delays, this product may not be available for our launch on 16 June (online) and 18 June (in store). It was 2:19am!
Are you serious Big W?! I had just viewed the product at 9:30pm that night and you only just realised that there were shipment delays after the toy sale had begun!? Couldn’t that little blue text box have been placed on the product earlier so that I wouldn’t have bothered even attempting to make the sale?
It’s All A CON!!!
That’s when it hit me… just as the catalogues contain high demand items at heavily discounted prices- which you will never be able to find in store due to the products supposedly running out, with no rain checks being able to be provided for certain things either – so too do the cyber sales contain baited products that you will never be able to purchase. But at least when you’re already in the store, you are more inclined to sus out alternative items.
What incentive is there to keep shopping online if the main item I would have loved to have got my little one isn’t available? Well, not surprisingly, there is no incentive… I left the site and went straight to sleep!
Realistically these sales aren’t a huge deal. I’ve learned that although they may be excellent for budgeting and saving a few dollars on toys, many of the items are things that aren’t current six months down the track at Christmas time.
Besides this, a new trick I’ve found is that if my children actually really do still want something in particular, if I just make them wait until their birthdays (after Christmas), the toys are even more heavily reduced!
What A Complete Flop!
Admittedly there are some great deals, but doing it virtually and having to select a character at ‘random’, because a product is assorted and just hoping that you get the right figurine that your child wants magically selected for them, combined with products being instantly unavailable made my virtual experience a complete flop.
Having said all of this it does say a lot about the incredible staff at Big W. I know that one of the first things I always do is email in to let their head office know how truly marvellous their sales assistants always are – even at 3am! So helpful and somehow so full of life ensuring that all customers have what they’re looking for if it’s available.
I do love online shopping too, but if I’ve been waiting in a virtual line for over an hour and the one item I need is immediately unavailable, then I lose interest fast… especially at that time of the morning.
This isn’t to say that I’m not looking forward to going in store next year in the middle of the night, but perhaps this year will bring an interesting change to the way I do our Christmas shopping.
Have you managed to buy anything in the Big W toy sale? Are you planning on heading in-store this week? Tell us in the comments below.