Have you ever had one of those retail experiences that make you silently scream, "Never again! I don't need anything. Ever!"
Also on Yahoo! Shine: End of Summer Checklist: 7 Essential Steps to Take Before Sending Your Kids Back to School
Mine came last August while back-to-school shopping with my daughter in tow. The sound of screeching babies echoed down the aisles. Parents jostled each other for spiral notebooks and ballpoint pens. Ring binders? Forget about it. A hulking man holding a lit cigarette in one hand and pushing his loaded cart with the other had just snapped up the last few—and nobody was going to ask him to share. And the checkout lines? Picture advance ticket sales for a Justin Bieber concert.
More on Yahoo!: Teachers Offer Back-to-School-Shopping Tips
Is there a way to avoid the madness? Short answer: Yes. Analyzing information from its more than 33 million users gathered from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30, 2012, the location-based social networking site Foursquare predicted the most crowded days to go back-to-school shopping this year. The data included check-ins from retailers such as department stores, electronics stores, clothing stores, and school supply/office supply stores. Foursquare determined that the following are the retail days to avoid (organized from most hideous to slightly less so):
1. Aug. 18
2. Aug. 11
3. Aug. 4
4. Sept. 2
5. Aug. 25
What if you simply can't avoid those days? Set your alarm clock. "Generally, the best time to shop is the morning," a representative of Foursquare told Yahoo! Shine. "Late afternoon and evening are the peak hours."
Also on Shine: