Shopper says Target is running A/C less and turning lights off to save money

@businessdoctorsmedia/TikTok JHVEPhoto/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘They want me to shop in the dark while sweating?’: Expert says Target is ditching A/C and dimming the lights to save money

‘Anything but reducing CEO pay and increase wages.’


Phil West


A college professor and small business advisor who is also familiar with Target as a shopper believes he’s learned how the big box chain is paying for savings promised a few weeks ago. He thinks it’s coming at yours and especially the workers’ expense, by cutting use of lights and air conditioning to create a warmer, darker Target.

The observation comes from Dr. TJ Zito, one half of a team billing itself as Business Doctors (@businessdoctorsmedia). Since going up with the video on June 3, it’s garnered more than 100,000 likes. He’s anchored the video around a story that circulated on May 20, including the NBC News story he provided a screenshot for, noting that Target was going to drop prices on about 5,000 different items in the store.

That story noted, “The company said in a statement that the price cuts are concentrated in grocery staples like milk, meat, bread, fruit and vegetables, as well as paper towels and diapers, with many cuts affecting its company-owned Good & Gather and Everspring brands. It had already cut prices on some 1,500 other items.”

Rick Gomez, executive vice president and chief food, essentials and beauty officer at Target, said via that press release, “We know consumers are feeling pressured to make the most of their budget, and Target is here to help them save more. Our teams work hard to deliver great value every day, and these new lower prices across thousands of items will add up to additional big savings for the millions of consumers that shop Target each week for their everyday needs.”

But Zito’s determined there’s a catch.

Is Target saving money by ditching air conditioning?

“The temperature in Target stores is going to be hotter this summer, and they’re not going to have the lights on as much,” he begins. “If you’ve seen the new signs as you’re walking into Target, they’re not going to run the AC as often. And they’re going to bring the lights down. So it’s saving on their power bills.”

Indeed he shared a photo of a sign recently erected at a Target that reads, “Our store is taking steps to conserve energy today by temporarily reducing lighting and air conditioning.”

He then notes, “And if you think back to a few weeks ago, they were bragging about how they’re going to bring down prices on the Good & Gather brand, which is their store brand. They’re also going to bring down prices on different items like Clorox. They just wanted to help us out. They were going to help the consumers out. What this looks like to me is they lowered those prices and now they’re trying to find a way to recoup it, so they’re not actually out anything.”

Zito reasoned that customers going in and out of the store won’t be that affected by it, then asks, “But what about the workers? What about the workers that are in those stores, day in, day out? What about the people that are working the stock room in the back, man? That’s already blazing hot, and they’re going outside and unloading trucks and going into that stock room and if they’re not going to run the AC, man, there’s people just going to be sweating and be real uncomfortable, but I don’t know if Target really cares about that.”

Zito also shared, “When I walked into my Target this weekend, I could definitely feel it. I can feel that it was about a good three to four degrees warmer and the lights definitely were more dim than what they were before.”

@businessdoctorsmedia Target Energy Saving Will not run AC as often and will turn down lights to save money. Who is getting the savings? #target #economy #marketing #savingmoney ♬ original sound – businessdoctorsmedia

Commenters weighed in.

“Anything but reducing CEO pay and increase wages,” one quipped.

Another remarked, “They want me to shop in the dark while sweating and uncomfortable? I just won’t bother going there at all.”

“Why don’t these huge stores not invest in solar panels then?” one wondered, which Zito agreed would be a good idea.

“I get migraines so I don’t mind the lights,” one shared, “but if it’s warm up in there I’m walking out.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to the creator via TikTok comment and website form, and to Target via email.

The Daily Dot