Consumer

Six Flags theme parks to require reservations upon reopening

Six Flags theme parks are looking to reopen this month in several states throughout the nation as shelter-in-place mandates expire or loosen. However, to do so, those planned to open first — including Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, Six Flags Fiesta Texas in San Antonio, Six Flags Over Georgia near Atlanta, Six Flags St. Louis in Missouri, Frontier City in Oklahoma City and Six Flags Mexico in Mexico City, according to Newsweek — will have to adhere to certain guidelines that will limit any spur of the moment rollercoaster cravings. According to the theme parks’ websites, guests who want to visit a Six Flags location upon reopening will have to make reservations in advance. “IMPORTANT: ALL VISITORS (INCLUDING PASS HOLDERS AND MEMBERS) MUST MAKE ADVANCE RESERVATIONS TO VISIT THE PARK,” reads a message posted to the parks’ websites. “To meet state social distancing guidelines and ensure the health and safety of our guests, all visits to the park must be pre-scheduled using our online reservation system.” In addition to the reservation-system, Six Flags will also be conducting temperature checks at entrances and requiring guests to wear face masks, CBS Los Angeles reported. Meanwhile, other theme parks, like Disneyland and Disney World, do not yet have a concrete target date for reopening.

So, heads up..  Go to the Six Flags web site before going.

Wendy’s offers free chicken nuggets as part of ‘GroupNug’ promotion amid coronavirus pandemic

Wendy’s is taking a page out of Taco Bell’s playbook with plans to start handing out its signature menu item amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic — completely free of charge. On Tuesday, Wendy’s announced that participating restaurants across the country will be giving away orders of 4-Piece Chicken Nuggets to anyone who visits the drive-thru this Friday, April 24. The company says the promotion, called “GroupNug,” was inspired by the chain’s team members and restaurant crews who have been “going above and beyond” to help out their communities. “Wendy’s restaurant teams across the nation have been living out one of Wendy’s most important values — Do the Right Thing — by helping their communities wherever they can during this unprecedented time,” said Carl Loredo, the chief marketing officer of Wendy’s U.S, in a press release. “These actions shine a light on so many individuals both in Wendy’s and across the nation doing good for others. We want to show our appreciation with our GroupNug offer for the entire country.” Wendy’s has also been sharing news of its exceptional team members to its Square Deal Blog, which has been documenting instances of Wendy’s franchisees providing free meals to front-line workers, first responders and those in need. “We’re extremely proud of all the efforts we’ve seen and we know there are more out there,” the blog reads. “It’s people like those above who shine bright and keep us going at times like these.” In honor of the GroupNug promotion, the Wendy’s Twitter account is even taking a break from its usual snarky self to instead honor the workers and citizens who “deserve some shine right now.” Wendy’s GroupNug promotion kicks off at participating restaurants this Friday, April 24, at 10:30 a.m. No purchase is necessary, but orders of free nuggets are limited to one per vehicle.

Very cool!!   🙂

How to Find Out When Hard-to-Find Items Will Be Back in Stock

You thought you had enough toilet paper to last a long time… until you checked in the bathroom and discovered you only have one small roll left. Unfortunately, in most grocery stores across the country, toilet paper might be sold out. So, what do you do? Thankfully, you can set alerts to figure out when these hard-to-find items will be back in stock. If you’re trying to avoid visiting the supermarket or grocery store in person, then ordering groceries and essential products online is a great alternative. However, when products are out of stock, you can’t wait around forever wondering when it will be back in stock again. Thankfully, you can set up an alert that will notify you when a product is back in stock and will be available to be purchased. There are a few different ways to set up alerts depending on the retailer. For example, if you go to Walmart’s website to purchase an item that’s out of stock, you’ll see the “Out of Stock” notification. However, for some products, right next to the “Out of Stock” notification is a blue button that reads “Get In-Stock Alert.” Once you click that alert, you can then submit your e-mail address and Walmart will e-mail you if and when the product is available to purchase. If you’re trying to buy a cleaning product on Amazon but notice it’s no longer in stock, you should see an “Alert Me” box. If this service is available for that particular product, you can click “Sign up,” and Amazon will alert you via e-mail to let you know the product is available. However, Amazon notes that “signing up to be notified does not reserve a copy of this item for you. When you receive the e-mail informing you that the item is available, you’ll need to return to Amazon.com to place your order.” With Target, you’re able to set up notifications or use an app. “When an item is out of stock, we may offer the option to receive notifications when it’s back in stock,” according to Target’s website. “If this is available for an item, the Target.com product details page will display a ‘notify me when it’s back’ button. If you’re using the Target app, it will be a ‘notify me’ button.” Additional information can be found on its website, but Target also notes that “opting in to receive notifications doesn’t reserve or guarantee item availability, so you may want to act fast in the event the item goes out of stock again.” Unfortunately, many stores including Costco, CVS, and Home Depot, don’t provide in-stock alerts.

Disney to stop charging annual passholders after backlash during coronavirus shutdown

Disney continues to change its operations during the coronavirus outbreak. Annual passholders had recently complained about still being charged monthly payments despite the Disney parks being closed. Now, the company has announced that it will no longer be charging the monthly payments and is making refunds to certain customers. On the Disney World website, the company announced that as of April 5, it will no longer be charging monthly payments for annual passholders on the monthly payment schedule. Also, it will retroactively be refunding payments made between March 14 and April 4. Annual passholders who paid in full will have the option of having their pass’ expiration date extended or receiving a partial refund (to be determined by the park’s length of closure). On the site, Disney wrote, “This is a truly unprecedented time for all of us and we want to thank you for your patience as we work through the many details related to the temporary closure of the theme parks. We recognize that this may be a challenging time, so we wanted to share how we will assist our Annual Passholders.” Some annual passholders had recently taken to social media to complain that, despite the park’s closure, they were still being charged the monthly payments. When the parks first closed, Disney stated that it would extend the expiration dates on the passes in relation to the park’s total closure. Since then, however, not only has the closure of Disneyland and Disney World been extended, but many workers across the country have been laid off or have seen a significant decrease in their monthly income due to the coronavirus outbreak. According to some complaints on social media, this situation made it much harder for some to afford the monthly payments.

Good on Disney for doing this.  It’s the right thing to do.  For more info, if this affects you, click on the text above.

Average car loan now 70 months as zero percent interest deals grow during coronavirus crisis

The average new car loan term broke 70 months for the first time in March, and it could get longer. Edmunds data showed that 35.3 percent of loans issued last month had terms from 73-84 months, and that’s up from 35.3 months in February. Now automakers are rolling out new zero percent interest, 84-month loan programs as sales crater due to the coronavirus pandemic. General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Hyundai and Genesis are each offering such deals on several models for well-qualified buyers, some coupled with deferred payments, and there’s even a zero percent interest, 72-month loan available for the electric Chevrolet Bolt that comes with a $4,750 discount. J.D. Power reported that nearly a quarter of sales completed during the last week in March included 84-month financing, while Edmunds saw the share of zero percent loans of all durations jump from 3.6 percent to 4.7 percent during the month. The average interest rate also ticked up in March, however, hitting 5.8 percent, while loans at 10 percent and higher rates made up 12.8 percent of sales, up from 10.7 percent in February. According to Edmunds, there aren’t many negatives to going with a long-term zero percent loan, as they can typically be paid off early without penalty. But you’ll need a very good credit rating to qualify and have to do the math to make sure it’s better overall than any of the other offers available on the model you’re interested in.

Great news if you’re in the market for a new car!  For more, click on the text above.     🙂

Toilet paper site claims it calculates how long your supply will last

It’s one of the key questions as Americans wait out the coronavirus outbreak at home: How long will my stash of toilet paper last? A new website called “How much toilet paper?” claims it can roll out an answer for you. Simply set the top bar to how many rolls you currently have, then set the second bar to how many average bathroom visits you make per day – and the website’s calculator does the rest. If you have a standard package of four rolls, for example, the website says that will last you 32 days if you make an average of two bathroom visits per day. The website “has now been used by over 2,000,000 people and is helping to reduce toilet paper shortage round the world,” it claims. The site, howmuchtoiletpaper.com, says it was created by Ben Sassoon, a London-based student and software developer, and Sam Harris, an artist, “after they had a discussion about how much toilet paper they used on a day to day basis and how that would change during the pandemic.” The site also includes a plea that people refrain from buying up all the toilet paper they can find at their local grocery store, as many of those stores struggle to keep up with the demand from panicky customers. “Not everyone is able to get to a store and stock up on toilet roll,” it says, adding, “Don’t be selfish.”

You really can’t make this stuff up, folks.  If you REALLY want to check this site out, click on the text above.     🙂

Target reducing store hours, reserving Wednesday mornings for vulnerable customers to shop

Target has revealed new store policies as the coronavirus outbreak continues. Target will start reducing store hours beginning Wednesday, with all stores closing by 9 p.m. daily. The major retail chain said this will allow employees to replenish items and deeply clean the facilities. In addition to closing the store earlier, Target will reserve the first hour of Wednesday mornings for vulnerable guests – including elderly customers and those with underlying health concerns – a letter from CEO Brian Cornell shared. The letter shared Target would be “fast-tracking the flow” of high-demand products and begin product limits for highest demand merchandise, and “respectfully ask[ing] all guests to consider their immediate needs and purchase accordingly.” Earlier, the chain announced it would be adding more staffing for services that support social distancing, like drive-up and pickup orders, which are still being offered. Target’s move comes a day after Costco adopted a similar policy in response to the growing outbreak. Costco announced Tuesday that it would begin limiting the number of customers allowed in the store at one time, as well as limiting the amount of in-demand items one person could purchase.

Great job Target!!  For more, click on the text above.     🙂