American stores

In the United States you will find yourself being urged from every page of every newspaper and on practically every television station to buy all kinds of goods that you are actually quite happy without.

Not only is there a wide range of prices for goods in America, there is also a wide range in the quality of goods offered for sale. Unlike some countries, Americans generally pay the price of a product without question, instead of trying to get a lower price by bargaining. However, there are many "sales" in the United States, during which time stores will lower their normal prices. This may all be very confusing to the visitor. Which is the best product to buy out of hundreds to choose from? How are you going to know how to "get your money's worth" when you shop? Perhaps the best advice is: Don't hurry. Visit various stories and determine the quality of goods. Examine them carefully. Read the advertisements so that you can compare prices. Explore and examine before you buy.

There is a great variety of shops in the United States, ranging from very large stores called "department stores," offering clothing, furniture, household goods as well as many other goods, to very small shops that specialize in just one kind of product. There are "discount houses" offering goods at low prices, and "dime stores" specializing in a wide range of inexpensive items.

Most department stores in large cities carry average to better quality products at average to higher prices. However, they offer the shopper great convenience since they contain such a wide variety of products.

If convenience isn't important to you as price, you many want to shop in some of the discount houses. These stores have nearly as great a variety of goods as department stores, but offer lower prices. They can do so for several reasons. They don't offer the same services to buyers that department stores do; there may be fewer sales people; and the store probably doesn't deliver purchases.

There are many small shops in America, as there are everywhere, that offer a more limited quantity of products. Usually run by a small number of salespeople, these shops offer products that range from inexpensive to very expensive, depending on the shop. You are likely to receive more attention from the sales-people in small shops than in department stores.

Another popular shop is the "dime store," sometimes referred to as the "five and ten." No longer selling many things for five or ten cents, these stores got their name in the last century when it was decided that a small profit on a great quantity of goods would be better than a large profit on fewer sales. Dime stores specialize in a wide variety of inexpensive items and today, prices range from a quarter or 50 cents up to several dollars. If you need a small item and don't want to spend very much, the dime store is likely to have just what you are looking for.

The United States is also known for its "supermarkets," where huge quantities of all kinds of food and household articles are sold. These stores offer good quality food at lower prices than smaller food stores.

The vast majority of Americans do all their food shopping in supermarkets. One of the most interesting sections to visit is the frozen food section. With discoveries in methods to preserve food, almost every kind of food can be frozen and yet keep its original flavor. Since frozen foods require so little time to cook, they have naturally become very popular everywhere in the coutry.