Smart shopping during COVID-19: Avoid these things

(WZAW) -- During the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to make sure we stay smart consumers, as doing things like panic shopping can quickly get us off course.

That’s where Matt Granite aka “The Deal Guy” comes in to make sure we’re practicing good spending habits. Granite is a consumer news journalist and contributor to USA Today. He’s the single most watched consumer expert in the world, as host of Amazon’s top-rated consumer series, “Today’s Deal Live”.

Granite joined NewsChannel 7 at 4 via Zoom on Thursday. One topic he talked about was the worst possible purchases to make during the pandemic.

“In my opinion, the worst possible purchases you can make are one of three things. It’s from a website you’ve never heard of before that’s all of a sudden on the radar, because you got some email and you’re thinking, ‘OK well they’ve got great prices, I can probably grab anything from there.’ Absolutely not.”

He warned two of the scams he is seeing right now are ones for infrared thermometers and pulse oximeters.

“The other thing I definitely wouldn’t buy right now is a non-essential.” One example he gave is clothing. “So the things that are on sale now will be liquidated within the next 60 days.”

The third thing he said to avoid buying now is any large electronics, even though it’s set at a good price. Stores may be desperate to make a sale, but the electronics will be at an even better price if you wait just a little bit longer.

With businesses beginning to once again open their doors, Granite said it’s also important to be mindful of the purchases you’re making as things are getting back to normal.

“The big thing I would recommend doing is not being early on anything that’s the bargain, like those premature responses to situations like airline cancellations or flight credits.” He said not to accept all of the offers you get in return for a voucher, because maybe you won’t be traveling with that airline in the future or the airline goes bankrupt.

His final piece of advice? “Don’t click a link in any email of any kind, even if you think you know the merchant. Visit all websites on your own action. There’s more scams running right now than any time that I’ve seen over the course of the last two decades that I’ve been working as an advocate.”

For further tips and advice from Matt, visit