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Black Friday Tips

20 Nov

For the 3rd year in a row, I’m posting (and re posting  some Black Friday tips)…and for the 30th year in a row, I will NOT be shopping on Good Friday.  I shall put up my Christmas decorations, get a mani/pedi with Meredith, force the kids (and Murph) into a festive holiday pose for the Christmas card, take Kevin to the airport, enjoy some fine wine, and thank the heavens that I am not in the Malls…and will be looking forward to Cyber Monday!!

After perusing the internet for many hours, these are the 3 sites I found with the best tips…some tips are duplicates but I thought I’d just post their entire list of tips…You can pick and choose the ones that work for you…like I shall pick the one that says I will stay in my jammies. 🙂

These tips come from the Atlanta Journal Constitution
1. Start your research online. Deckard suggests signing up for email newsletters from your favorite retailers now so you’ll be privy to the types of sales they’ll be offering on Black Friday. “When you’re on the retailer emails, you’ll learn about the sales and deals before the rest of the public,” she said. “This gives you a little more time to plan your strategy.
2. Make a strategic plan. It’s important to know which stores you want to visit ahead of time, as well as what items you want to purchase at each store. “This will ensure you are focusing on things you actually need, and saving the most,” Deckard said. “Savings Lifestyle even has a Black Friday price database that you can search quickly to find the best price on all Black Friday sale items as you create a shopping list.”
3. Scope the store out ahead of time. Deckard suggests doing a run-through of the stores you plan to visit on Black Friday before the day actually arrives. “Walk through and find the special Black Friday display sections for the items you want to purchase. Many times people make a mad dash for these areas because the most inventory is placed there. Don’t forget to check where the merchandise normally resides in the store, as well.”
4. Conduct price comparison searches. While Black Friday historically has the best prices, consider doing a quick online search to see if you can find the item priced the same, or lower, than the Black Friday sale price being offered. “Knowing who has the best price will help you determine if the trip out is worth it,” says Deckard. Similarly, when considering what you’d like to actually purchase on Black Friday, think about the items that are offering the biggest potential savings and get to those first. “Would you rather save $100 on a gaming system, or $20 on the blender,” says Deckard. “Only spend your time in line, and online, waiting to get those items that can help you save the most.”
5. Don’t forget online shopping. “I’m a big online Black Friday shopper,” says Deckard. “Several years ago we contemplated going out for one of the door busters on Black Friday, but when we passed the store at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, the line was already entirely too long. I was willing to give up the $200 savings to not camp out the night before.” It’s important to consider the value of your time over money when it comes to these deals as well, and shopping online can be an excellent alternative to going in-person. Plus, as an added bonus, Savings.com can help you find exclusive coupon codes for retailers, so you can save even more.
6. Stock up on discount gift cards ahead of time. If you know you’d like to shop at certain stores this season, consider purchasing discounted gift cards in advance from places like eBay Auctions, Plastic Jungle and Gift Card Rescue. Sites like these allow you to purchase the gift cards at anywhere from 5%-25% off the value of the card. Just check ahead of time that you can use the card on already on-sale items before planning to use them all up on Black Friday.

These tips come from Hip2Save, which is a great website for saving money everyday…Not only on  Black Friday!

(1) Be prepared. Before you head out to the store, research the Black Friday ads (which I will be posting as the become available) and outline exactly what you would like to purchase. And to be extra prepared, you can even research the layout of your store, so you’ll know exactly where to head to grab the items on your list.

(2) Be ready to stand in line for quite a long time. Wear comfy shoes and appropriate outerwear and consider leaving the kiddos at home (if this is not possible, bring toys or other items to keep them entertained while shopping).

(3) Know your store’s hours (some stores are opening on Thanksgiving night while others are waiting until the wee hours of Friday morning). Again, I will be posting store-specific information in the coming days.

(4) Familiarize yourself with each store’s price matching and/or coupon policy. Keep in mind that many stores have created special price matching policies specific for Black Friday.

(5) Make a list! This will keep you focused and will definitely help to prevent you from being tempted to purchase additional items that are not on the list.

(6) Remember to ask yourself whether the great deal you see is actually a great deal for you. Check out this post for more on this topic. You may also want to research online prices versus in-store prices, as you can often snag better deals online even when you factor in shipping costs. Plus, think about the time and gas saved when shopping online! Love that!

(7) Keep those receipts! After the adrenaline rush is over, you may realize that you got caught up in the Black Friday craziness and purchased items that you really do not want. As long as you have the receipt, you should be able to return them and get a full refund.

(8) Go with your mom, sister, or a friend. Plan ahead and plan to split up so you can snag items for each other. It’s the only way I’ve figured out to help you be in two places at once! If you don’t want to go to separate stores, you can each start out on separate ends of the same store and meet in the middle after you’ve snatched up as many of the things on your (and each other’s) lists as you could along the way.

(9) Gas up the night before so you don’t waste precious sleep OR shopping time at the pump. Also, map out your route based on store opening times to minimize backtracking and missing out on door buster items you’re planning to purchase.

(10) Don’t give up! If the item you are looking for is not on the shelf or display, check the front of the store where other shoppers may have left items they weren’t sure about before checking out. Or, check with your cashier to see if someone happened to change their mind at the register and leave the item you were looking for there.

(11) Be friendly. You will be amazed at how people will help each other, even in the craziness, if they are approached with kindness.

(12 ) And my favorite tip of all… skip Black Friday and shop Cyber Monday instead! There is nothing better than snagging *HOT* deals from the comfort of your own home in your favorite PJ’s!  This is Terry’s #1 Favorite Tip as well!

And the Third site I went to, and found some snappy tips:

http://www.creativeprincessbrandi.com

1.) Start NOW! It actually is NOT too early to start shopping, it isn’t too late either. Did you know you DO NOT have to get up at 3am to get the best deals on your must have items? It may be beneficial to you to keep a list of items people want/need and shop for them all year. This will allow you to get THE BEST deal!
2.) Add Items to Your Cart NOW! I just got word that Kohl’s will offer their deals online starting at 12:01am WEDNESDAY November 21st!  That is two days before the in-store sale starts! Amazon is also one that starts their sale early. They actually have a week long BF sale!  If you see something on a site that you just can’t live without or you think someone would LOVE, put it in your cart NOW! This way, when the BF sale goes live you can get it before it’s gone!
3.) Avoid the Crowds This pretty much goes with #2. Most stores put their sales live online before the sale goes live in store. This allows you to get exactly what you want, at home, stress free, in your jammies!
4.) Earn Money While You Shop! Shop through a site such as SwagbucksEbates or any other “extra deal” sites. You will receive a percentage back on your purchases when shopping through these sites, this allowing you to put some extra $$ in your pocket!
5.) Sign up for Swagbucks! Since we are on the subject, sign up for Swagbucks.com! Use them EVERY TIME you search for something! I also use them anytime I go to ANY site, even if I have been to that site a million times.  Want to check in on Facebook? Search Facebook on Swagbucks first! Why? Because you can earn points when you search! You can then turn those points into all kinds of things, my favorite is Amazon gift cards. There are also a ton of other ways to earn points while you are on Swagbucks. I paid for nearly all of our Christmas last year with the Amazon Cards I earned!
6.) Follow Black Friday Sites! Want to see the Black Friday ads early? Maybe you want to be among the first to know when stores offer special deals? My favorite sites are Black Friday at GottaDeal.comand BFAds.net. Be sure to follow them on Facebook as well!
7.) Set Google Alerts! If there is an item that you just HAVE to HAVE set up a Google Alert for it and be alerted when it goes on sale!8.) Use Coupons! Unless specifically stated you CAN use coupons/coupon codes!  In fact, a LOT stores put coupons out specifically for Black Friday! Some stores even allow you to stack your coupons for this day ONLY! At Bath and Body Works a few years ago we found about 6 coupons that we were able to stack and save TONS of money!  It was seriously a ridiculous amount that we saved. Last year I noticed they changed their policy and did not have near as many coupons out. Use sites such as RetailMeNot.com to check for online coupons codes!9.) Get Free Shipping! You can sign up for a 30 Day Trial at FreeShipping.com! If you plan to shop online I would sign up here, work it to where you are covered for the entire holiday season by waiting just a few days before Black Friday to sign up! You can also sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime and receive FREE two day shipping for a month! At the end of your trial you are able to purchase Prime for a year for $79. However! You can split this with up to 5 people! That’s just over $15 each for the year! If you use Amazon a lot, that is totally worth it! Plus, you get other benefits with your membership…not just free shipping.10.) Get the Lowest Price! Isn’t that what it is all about? If you are shopping online you can use sites such as PriceGrabber.com
 to make sure you are getting the lowest available price

BLACK FRIDAY STORE OPENING HOURS 

Store Thanksgiving Hours* Black Friday Hours
AAFES Exchange 4am
Academy Sports 5am-10pm
AC Moore 5am
Bass Pro Shop 5am-11am
Bealls Florida 12am
Belk 12am-10pm
Big Lots 7am-9pm 6am-11am
Blain’s Farm & Fleet 6am
BJ’s 7am
Best Buy 12am
Bon Ton 12am
Cabela’s 12am
CompUSA 5am
Costco 9am
CVS Pharmacy varies by location varies by location
Dell 5am
Dick’s Sporting Goods 12am
Disney Store 12am
Dollar General 7am-6pm 7am
Electronics Expo 7am-9pm
Express 12am (select stores only)
Family Dollar 8am-5pm 8am
Fred’s Meyer 5am-11am
Fred’s Super Dollar 5am
Gander Mountain 9am-12am 6am-10pm
Goody’s 8pm-12am 6am
Gordmans 5am
Half Price Books 7am
Harbor Freight 7am
hhgregg 10pm-12am 12am
Home Depot 5am
JC Penney 6am-11pm
JoAnn 6am
Kohl’s 12am
Lowe’s 6am-4pm 11:59pm
Kmart 6am-4pm; 8pm-12am 12am-3am; 5am-11pm
Land’s End (Online) 5am 5am
MacMall Online 12am-2am, 5am-9pm
Macy’s 12am
Meijer 6am
Michaels 4pm-11pm 7am-10pm
Modell’s 12am-3pm
Music & Arts 8am
Northern Tool 6am
Office Depot 5am
OfficeMax 6am
Old Navy varies by location 12am
Olympia Sports 5am
Palais Royal 8pm-12am 6am
Peebles 8pm-12am 6am
PepBoys Varies by store
RadioShack 6am
Rite Aid 7am
Rural King  7am-8pm 6am-9pm
Sam’s Club 7am
Sears 8pm-12am 12am-10pm
Sears Hometown Stores 8pm-12am 12am
Sears Outlet 8pm-12am 12am
Shopko 9pm-12am 12am-11pm
Sportsman’s Warehouse 6am
Stage 8pm-12am 6am
Staples 5am
Stein Mart 7am
Tanger Outlets 10pm-12am 12am
Target 9pm-12am 12am-11pm
TigerDirect.com Online Online
Toys R Us 8pm-12am 12am
Walgreens 9am-6pm to be announced
Walmart 8pm-12am 12am

*If no store hours listed, store closed on Thanksgiving Day.

And one more reason to love Nordstrom…they won’t be Decking their Halls till Black Friday.

And, if you’d like to revisit my last 2 years of Black Friday posts…for your viewing pleasure!

https://dressedtoat.wordpress.com/2010/11/25/black-friday/

https://dressedtoat.wordpress.com/2011/11/23/black-friday-part-deux/

Happy Shopping.  Be Safe.  Please mind your manners. 🙂

And to one of my most loyal blog followers…Happy Birthday LAP!!

May you and yours have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving.

xoxo,

T.

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3 Responses to “Black Friday Tips”

  1. LAP November 20, 2012 at 9:17 pm #

    Oh my . . . too much to remember — way too exhausting!! I vote for the Cyber Monday Shopping Extravaganza!!!

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