Black Friday Shopping 101
Start the timer, everyone! Thanksgiving has come! Which means, Black Friday shopping let’s go!
With all of the crazy deals on this infamous weekend come a great deal of madness. So, we’ve compiled a list of all the need-to-knows about getting the most out of your Friday (and hopefully avoiding some of the craziness).
Get Overly Organized
There is no such thing as being too prepared. The best way to not over spend or to miss out on deals is to make a budget and a list (that you stick to). Sort your list by store, prioritizing the ones with your must-haves at the top. Then, put items for each store in order of department and “I need this in my life.” An inside tip – don’t worry if they are out! Have a back-up item ready to go just in case.
Tackle it Together
Not only is this day about sales, it’s about togetherness. Leave the kids at home, but definitely bring a friend to help you out. This will be more enjoyable, and also help you to optimize your time better. Split up who will shop the departments to get in and out. Also, make sure whoever finishes the list first gets in line!
Did you know that sometimes the best deals are actually not on Black Friday? Sign up for store newsletters, ads, and loyalty programs ahead of time to check the fine print and get coupons. Important: pay special attention to door busters and the sales the week prior to Thanksgiving. Many stores will actually start their deals several days before and end them mid-day on Friday. Often times, retail stores have their Black Friday deals listed as Early Bird Specials that end by 1 p.m. A select few will have Night Owl Deals. If so, go later in the day to avoid lines. To browse multiple deals at once, get a Black Friday App. This will show you deals specific to the day for all or your favorite retailers.
Price Check, Anyone?
To get the best deal possible, definitely download a price comparison app. Most stores don’t price match on Black Friday, so online shopping will be your best friend. Many apps have a price scanner tool built in for your convenience, and this will definitely come in handy. Tom’s Guide suggests trying Google Shopping, ShopSavvy, or PriceGrabber before buying your item. This will let you know if it’s cheaper elsewhere or online.
Cash or Card?
We’ve all heard of the horrors of massive identity theft scandals on Black Friday. While most people suggest using cash to avoid identity theft (and temptation going outside of your budget), we suggest looking into discounted gift cards. Usually you can save enough to get that one extra gift or toy you were debating about. Or, if you have cash back cards, pick just one to use to make the most of your day.
Work Smart, Not Hard
Get gift receipts! I love my 5th cousin twice removed on my mom’s side, but I don’t know how much I want to return that turtle neck I got him. And that toy for… whose niece is that again? The moral of the story: some people might not be happy with your gift. Instead of running around for an additional two weeks to make them happy, just give them a gift receipt so they can get what they actually want. It’s the thought that counts, right? Plus, don’t forget about return policies. Usually there’s a slim window for bringing back sale items if you can bring them back at all.