Higher Vera Bradley Prices Starting in July

I hate to be the one to bring bad news, but starting in July 2011, prices on all Vera Bradley products are set to rise five percent.  According to the Fort Wayne News Sentinel, "company executives said they plan a 5 percent increase in prices with the fall collection, which will be released July 7."  According to the article, "older patterns will be 'retagged' at that time, too, in line with the price increase."  Here is a link to the full article:

http://www.news-sentinel.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110602/BUSINESS/106020322

Although the company's net revenues were up in the first quarter, its net income was down, due to an increase in the amount of income tax it paid ($200,000 this quarter last year compared to $7.5 million this year - ouch!).  I am no tax expert, but I can't help to wonder if all this has something to do with the company recently taking its stock public.  

Then again, it could just be that the cost of virtually everything in the U.S. is on the rise.  I usually try not to get too political here, but I just read an article the other day that the federal reserve is gearing up for another round (its third one since 2009!) of printing money (or as they call it now, quantitative easing).  We are already seeing the effects of the first two rounds with higher prices at the gas pump and in the grocery stores.  Inflation is definitely a problem, and it looks like it's just going to get worse.

Ok, I will be sending yet another letter to my representatives in Washington after I finish this post, so I will save my rant for them, and get back on track here...

How will the Vera Bradley price increases hit your wallet?  If you pay full retail, it means that you will be paying a few dollars more on many styles.

For example, I know the Vera Bradley backpacks are very popular in July and August, with back to school.  Currently, a regular backpack retails for $88.00.  With the price increase in July, the new price will be $92.40.  My guess is that they will probably round up to the nearest dollar, so we will be paying approximately $93.00.  Another example, the Vera Bradley Hipster is one of their most popular styles and currently sells for $56.00.  The new price will be $58.80 (or $59.00).

For me, the hike itself is not a deal breaker, although the rising costs of everything else is cutting into my budget for discretionary items.  I will still keep my eyes out for bargains - I hate to pay full price for anything!  If I can't wait for the outlet sale to buy something, I will track down a good deal on eBay.

Of course, I'm curious to hear what you think of the news!  Leave a comment below with your opinion...

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