Looking to grab a bargain? In this article I give the low down on the Next sale, when the next sale dates are, what to look out, and how to book your VIP slot.
In a world of seemingly never ending sales the Next sale stands head and shoulders above the rest. As a young adult I remember queuing up at 4am to be one of the first to get access to Next’s famous boxing day sale. My prize that day was navy blue single-breasted suit at 70% off, perfect for an upcoming interview at the Japanese Embassy in London.
That was nearly 20 years ago. These days you don’t need to be a sleep deprived student or early riser to get the best deals. Instead, the best way to pick up the items you want is by booking a VIP slot to the Next sale. I’ll show you how in a moment, but first a little background on the Next sale.
What exactly is the Next sale and what’s all the fuss about?
Like many clothing retailers Next holds sales throughout the year as it changes its stock for the coming season. There are four main events a year as the seasons change, so there’s one in Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. Added to that there is often a Black Friday even as the sale seems to have successfully stuck on this side of the Atlantic too.
The sales are popular due to the massive discounts on offer with savings of up to 70% off the regular retail price.
What items are included in the Next sales?
Typically items from all departments are included in the sales but there’s a heavy learning towards womenswear and kids clothing. During the boxing day sale more homeware items and accessories tend to get added compared to the Spring and Summer sales.
Generally, sale items will be current stock and previous seasons items from departments such as:
- Children’s clothing
- Homeware and furniture
- Some branded items
How to find sale items before the sale
There used to be a trick to find out if an item was going to be included in an upcoming sale. A day or two before a sale staff would pen markings on the tags of certain items, these items would then usually end up in the sale the next day.
The markings consisted of a letter followed by a number e.g., G16 with the number allegedly being that the item would be discounted to.
This Next sale trick was first revealed in Wales Online in 2019 I don’t know if this is still a thing, if a Next insider cares to reach out anonymously I’d love to hear from you.
When is the next sale at Next?
The next sale will be the Next Boxing Day sale on Monday 26th December 2022, larger stores will open from 5am, and there can be lengthy queues. This is usually Next’s largest sale of the year with massive discounts on offer.
Previous 2022 sale dates were:
- Next Spring sale 2022: 2nd April 2022
- Next Summer Sale 2022: 9th July 2022
- Next Autumn Sale 2022: 25th September 2022
When is the Next sale 2023?
Next’s sale dates 2023 haven’t officially been announced yet, but typically the Boxing Day sale carries over well into January.
Judging from past events Next’s Spring sale will likely begin in March 2023, the summer sale in July 2023, and the autumn sale in September.
That being said, the UK is headed for a recession that is likely to carry over into 2023. As consumers cut back on spending Next, along with other highstreet retailers might be tempted to bring forward its sale dates to increase footfall, and boost quarterly revenues.
It’s certainly something to keep an eye on. I’ll update this article as things unfold and dates are officially announced.
When is the Next Black Friday Event?
In addition to the traditional Next sales, Next also holds a Black Friday event. This takes place on the Friday after American Thanksgiving (note there’s also a Thanksgiving in Canada with different dates, so don’t get them mixed up).
This year Black Friday is on Friday 25th November 2022 followed by Cyber Monday on 28th November.
What is the Next VIP sale slots and previews?
Before its sales Next hands out a certain amount of VIP sales slots, and sales previews. These are typically sent via email with a link to a ‘Next Sale Preview’ which allows you to see which items are going to be included in the sale.
Typically, you need to book a preview slot, there are a limited number so it’s worth taking the first slot you can as they are on a first come first served basis. Be careful though as if you miss your slot whilst I’ve found I could still access the sale, it supposedly reduces your chance of being selected for the next sale event.
How to get Next sale VIP slots
Those eligible for a VIP will receive an email invitation to book a slot. This is often sent a few days before a sale begins.
To be eligible for a VIP slot, customers must:
- Have a NextPay credit account
- Made a recent order (last 180 days)
- Have at least £250 available credit available in their Next account
- Selected to receive promotional emails from Next
- You must also have returned less than two thirds of the items ordered.
As mentioned above, it’s best to take the first slot you can. Also due to the limited nature of slots, if you haven’t added anything to your basket within 20 mins, it’s possible that you’ll lose your slot, so I recommend just adding an item so you have longer to browse. If it’s not something you actually want to buy, be sure to remove it before checking out.
If you aren’t a Nextpay account holder and want to sign up you can do so on the Next website. Bear in mind that the Nextpay account is a credit account and carries a high interest rate of over 23%. If you do use it be sure to pay it off in full otherwise the discounted items you bought may end up costing you more than you actually saved.
Next in-store sale tips
If you can’t get a VIP slot or just prefer to shop in store, there a few tips and tricks that can make your sale experience a fruitful one.
Firstly, the ultra-bargain hunters go first thing in the morning as the store opens, or even queue (as I did) before the store opens. Yet by mid-morning, the queues have died down and many bargains are still available.
Just because you find an item doesn’t mean it’s not available. During the morning scrambles stores look more like a jumble sale, with clothes slung everywhere. It’s entirely possible items have been moved by customers or put on the reject rack in the changing rooms.
Additionally, during some sales the changing rooms are closed. These leads to people buying items trying them on at home and returning those they don’t like. That means items that appear to be out of stock could be back in stock again at some point during the sale.
Womenswear and children’s clothes sell out the fastest so are best bought early. Whereas Furniture usually gets again later in the sale so it best ignored during the initial frenzy.
Can I return Next sale items?
Sale items are covered by the same returns policy as other items. You have 28 days to return items for any reason. This applied to both online and in store items. This is sometimes extended during busy times such as over the winter sale period, as often stores are busy, and returns are limited.
Next clearance items
As with most stores Next also has a clearance section. These items are available at discount prices outside of normal sale times. Just like sale items the clearance products often have 50% off the usual retail price.
The main difference between clearance and the larger sales is the sheer number of items discounted and sizes available. Nevertheless, it’s still a good place to bag a bargain.