Celebrating Thanksgiving doesn’t seem to be complete without a hectic day of Black Friday shopping. With so many great deals advertised, it almost seems un-American to stay indoors and avoid the long lines and frenzied crowds. If you are brave enough to face the chaos, there are some things you can do to make your holiday shopping spree more enjoyable and productive. Here are some tips to keep in mind.
Start With a Shopping List
Long before the Black Friday ads are released, make your shopping list out. Start with the must-haves for the different people in your life, and then move on to those gifts that would be a nice touch. It is easy to want everything you see once the ads come out, so having a list already in hand makes it easier to narrow down between needs and wants. Have the list handy when you start browsing the ads.
Prioritize Online Deals
With ArrasCard, it is easy to make online purchases and give the gift of online purchasing options. For that special someone that isn’t going to be happy with whatever you decide to buy, you could always send an online gif card for the holiday. However, Black Friday deals are often released for in-store purchases and online purchases. You can save a lot of time and driving by looking at your favorite websites or the online shopping options for some of the retail locations you were going to stop at. You can avoid the line but still take advantage of the great pricing.
Use the Buddy System
It’s always more fun to go shopping with a friend or family member, but only if you are going to shop at the same pace. There are some dedicated shopping enthusiasts who will be out all day, running in and out to make the most of each sale. If you are a browser, this pace isn’t for you. Pair up with a shopping buddy that will match your speed and enthusiasm. Whether a power shopper or a slowpoke, it is always best to bring another person with you. Someone can stand in line while the other grabs an item, or you can use each other for budget accountability.
Bring a Copy of the Ad
Even though you could pull up an ad on your smartphone, it is much more reliable and efficient to have a copy of the store ad when you are headed to the check out counter. Prices don’t always ring up as advertised, and the store clerk may not care that have the entire ad memorized. You need to have a copy of the ad. There are also some stores that still offer price-matching, but this requires a copy of the advertised price from the competitor. If you didn’t get a hard copy of the ad in the mail, simply print off the flyer or information from the website. It may help you convince the store clerk to adjust the price.
Organize Your Returns
The return policies are getting more restrictive each year, but Black Friday deals always seem to have a shorter lifespan. Look at the store policy carefully concerning returns and any restocking fees that may be withheld from your return. This is especially important for online purchases. Always keep your receipts, and make a note on your calendar for the last day returns are allowed. If you are purchasing gift items, ask for a gift receipt.
Black Friday shopping can help you snag some great savings, and just in time for Christmas. If you are purchasing for yourself or you are using the day to gift shop, keep an eye on your budget and your shopping buddy. It can get crazy out there, and no toaster oven or sweatsuit is worth getting trampled over.
Author | Emily Forbes
An Entrepreneur, Mother & A passionate tech writer in the technology industry!