This consumeristic tradition is going on its 6th year with me! I started doing this during my freshman year of high school to experience shopping early in the morning and scoring some great stuff in the process. I've always been one to try and get some great clothes, accessories, anything for a great deal, and people always ask how I do it! Black Friday is one of those reasons.
These tips are what I've learned through personal experience, and while they don't guarantee 100 percent success (since Black Friday is so unpredictable), I hope that they can help make your time easier!
1. List EVERYTHING. I mentioned in a previous post how much I love lists and how great of a help they are to me. My mind is already so scattered, so creating lists of what I need when I go shopping is therapeutic for me, even if I don't actually take the list with me. I always keep a list of what I think are classic pieces that I need on my phone, so if I'm shopping and run into a great deal for a certain piece, I buy it and cross it off my list. Whether it's listing what you want to buy, where you want to go, or even who you are going to shop for, creating a list helps organize your thoughts and gives you an idea of how much money to bring, what you can afford to buy, and all that good stuff.
2. Have an idea of what your plan is going to be. Black Friday shopping isn't usually something people decide to on the spur of the moment (especially at 4am that morning), so it is always good to have a general idea of what you are going to do. Are you going to shop right after Thanksgiving dinner, or are you going to wake up at 4am to go shopping? What stores do you plan on shopping at? What do you need and what do you want if there's a good deal or some extra cash? How much money do you plan on spending? Writing this down helps (see tip #1). Keep this in mind when planning:
- Check store openings! Make sure you know what time they open so you can make sure to get there early.
- Do you want to shop at a mall or go to stand-alone stores like Best Buy or Target? (As for me, I personally prefer malls).
- Are you willing to drive to multiple locations?
- Are you going to buy gifts or splurge on yourself? (This is an important one).
- Be prepared to spend more than you planned. You know it's going to happen when you see that item you just need to have!
4. Patience. Yeah I know it's easy to get excited then cuss out the person who takes the last parking space in the parking lot right as they're opening the store. Just beware of things like that and know that things aren't going to go your way, as much as you try. (see tip #3).
5. My final tip for now: Go shopping with a friend! Shopping at 5 o'clock in the morning isn't fun alone, especially when everyone is going crazy and lines are really long. It helps to have a friend to keep you sane and help you out when things change. Plus, they can help keep you company when you're waiting in all those long lines to check out or enter a store. Besides, you can always hang out with them after all the shopping is done! I think they help make the experience fun. Unless you're a control freak and can't stand to have anyone help you. Then please, go by yourself and don't hurt anyone around you.
Haha, but seriously, have fun with it! Whether it's your first time or tenth time going along for this official start to the Christmas season celebration (as I see it), just have fun and don't sweat the small stuff. You don't want to start the holiday season holding a grudge or getting high blood pressure from Black Friday. It's a fun experience, so just go with it! I hope these tips help you score some great deals and deal with all the madness that comes with Black Friday. Good luck!