January disease is Zimbabwe’s version of Black Friday

Local Investment, Pick n Pay, Harare, African Cities
  1. Black Friday has become the symbol for discount shopping across the world but due to most Zimbabweans lack of interest in online shopping, annoyance with unreasonable ZIMRA duty charges and fear of whether goods would actually reach the end destination (Zimbabwe) we have largely missed most of the fire sale shopping online.

The last big shopping event Techzim endorsed was the AliExpress 11/11 sale and we have received all the goods we ordered in less than a month although we got charged 100% duty on some of the goods.

This has led Techzim to wonder what our own local version of Black Friday was, that’s when we realised were right at the beginning of it, our very own January disease.

This however solely depends on what side of the fence you’re on, if you’re on the “diseased” side you’re probably the seller (and Techzim wishes you a speedy recovery) but if you’re healthy in the pocket this is your biggest chance to strike while the bull is injured and buy buy buy.

January disease is a time where most people have either overspent over the Christmas period or are saddled with pressing issues demanding immediate payments, most notably school fees!

I know this sounds a bit mean and callous but when else will you have the chance to own your dream phone, laptop, TV, car or even fridge.

How to find the best January disease deal?

Definitely not in a shop! The shop owners already have rentals and salary demands so they are most likely not going to negotiate any lower than a measly $50 off or throw in a free pouch or screen guard. What you need to do is find the guy on the ground pushing his/her product as a sole trader.

You can find January disease deals on Facebook groups, Whatsapp groups, Tweets and on Classifieds websites. Recently I saw and verified someone selling a brand new Galaxy S7 Edge and Galaxy Neo watch for $500 negotiable, and they accepted EcoCash and Bank Transfers!

Cash vs EcoCash vs Bank Transfers

Now that Zimbabwe is in a cash crisis, if you hold cash you are in an even better negotiating position, the thirst for cash in the market has led most sellers to accept slashes prices (there are even some service stations selling fuel at a discounted price if you pay in cash).

EccCash to me is a very expensive form of payment since you might not be dealing with someone who has a merchant code you might need to add extra transaction fees so the recipient can cash out the exact amount, and when you’re dealing with figures over $500 it may become quite expensive.

I would rather do a bank transfer using Zipit which charges a flat fee of $1 for a transfer of up to $10,000. But then again the person you’re dealing with might not have a bank account or doesn’t want the hassle of queueing for cash, so in the end cash is king.

So if you’ve been eyeing something and saved up over the holidays whilst everyone else had fun this is your best time to go out and starts hunting for bargain deals, if you wait til say March, you might have to deal with a frustrated market looking to make up for January desperation sales.



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