Even though Black Friday can be a bit chaotic, with the right frame of mind and proper planning, it can definitely be worth the trip. To ensure that you score the best day after Thanksgiving sales, read the following tips to help you on your shopping extravaganza:
1. Have a plan. Be sure to do your homework in advance. Many ads will be made available online well before the sales start. Use the following helpful websites to view the sales ads as they become available. Visit my personal favorite sites: BlackFriday.net and BlackFriday.info for a comprehensive collection of Black Friday sale ads. Make a list of everything you want to purchase. If you are going after a big ticket item, make sure you know if you are getting a warranty. Be prepared for the sales person to try and convince you to buy add-ons such as spamware and such. Prepare your responses ahead of time.
2. Shop early. The very best Black Friday sales occur in the wee hours of the morning. Remember to set your alarm so you don’t sleep through the best sales. Most stores open around 5am. However, many retailers are now offering midnight Thanksgiving sales.
3. Bring a friend. Heading out to the stores alone on Black Friday might not be the best idea. Not to mention, it is a lot more fun bringing a friend or a few friends. It is also advised to have a friend or two if you are shopping early as it will still be dark out. Remember there is safety in numbers. It also helps to have one friend or more in case you need to temporarily split up to pursue a specific Black Friday sale.
4. Remember the ads. The Thanksgiving Day newspaper should be filled with Black Friday sales ads. Take time to scan all of the ads to determine what you are going after. Use them to plan out your Black Friday route. Bring the ads with you just in case you need to refer back to them. I also recommend keeping a list of the people you are buying a Christmas gift for in case you spot a deal.
5. Dress appropriately. Even though it might be cold outside, it is probably going to be warm in the stores that are crowded with eager bargain shoppers. Dress in layers and definitely wear comfy shoes. Be mindful of what you are carrying with you. If you keep your entire life in your purse like I do, consider bringing only the essentials to lighten your load. Save your energy for lugging around all of the Black Friday deals you score!
6. Consider credit card offers. Please, only do this is you are responsible with credit and you pay your balance off in full each month. If that is the case, you can achieve even more significant savings.
7. Have fun and be nice. It is the holiday season after all. Instead of being grumpy like other people, spread the holiday cheer with a smile and good manners.You will most likely be waiting in lines for a good part of the morning/day. Why not make some new friends and chat it up with the other people in line. Many times, they know about other sales going on or the like. Sometimes it is just fun to hear what people are hunting for.
8. Be prepared. Bring some coffee and a snack along. We always like to take a break in the middle of our shopping spree and grab a bite to eat and go over the ads and our lists again.
9. Take a break. While shopping is fun, it can be also be hard work, especially on a day like Black Friday. My BFF (Black Friday Friend) and I like to shop super early for the best of the best deals than stop
10. Shop online. Skip the crowds altogether and get the deals from your computer instead. Search for coupon codes on Retail Me Not. You can even earn cash back from shopping online through sites like ebates.