UNDERSTANDABLY, cost is a factor when it comes to buying anything and shoes are no exception — it's easier to get a $5 pair instead of spending the extra money on a pair which will last longer and certainly provide much-needed comfort for your feet.
But according to Consumer Council of Fiji CEO Premila Kumar, there are also ways to get both — and in the instance that you have to spend a hefty amount, it is justifiable.
"Shoes are much more than a protective wrapping for the feet. It's crucial that shoes are of the correct design, not just to accommodate our feet comfortably but for the activity that you intend to do," Mrs Kumar said.
"You must know the style, comfortability, affordability and durability of the shoes you want — no point spending money buying shoes that will give you blisters and pain or make your feet perspire."
Mrs Kumar said too often, consumers rush into purchasing shoes based simply on what they look like — without much thought on the impact they could have on your feet.
"Never rush when buying shoes, always try them on wearing both sides, know whether your feet are slim or wide because shoes are made for slim or wide-footed people.
"Don't be tempted to buy shoes in a sale unless they fit perfectly and are comfortable, it's the fit of the shoe and how you feel in the shoes that are more important."
And for all the closed-heel lovers out there — maybe try something that allows your toes a little more breathing room.
"Pick a style with material that breathes or a design with perforations that will not trap moisture and the best time to try out new shoes is during mid-afternoon — that's when feet swell to their maximum.
"Check the stitching for quality, especially along the baseline, inside and out and that soles and straps are stitched or glued properly — many times consumers discover defects after purchase.
"And always keep your receipts safely in case the need to seek redress arises — receipts will be used as evidence."