The holidays are our favorite time of year around here. All of the wonderful food, the smells wafting from kitchens and bakeries, the bright colors, and everyone just seems to be a little happier and jolly. Also fabulous this time of year? The sales! And we are coming up on one of my personal favorites, Black Friday! So, here are some tips from a pro, and some hot buys to look out for as you stuff that extra piece of pie in your purse and head out the door.
The Best Deals
Look no further than your closest Target for the best deals on stuff for around the house. This year, get your sister-in-law who loves home-cooked meals but has a life full of things that keep her too busy to make them a 6-Qt Instant Pot for $69.95. That’s a good enough deal to throw one in the basket for yourself, too! Their vaccum game is on point this year as we see Dyson and Shark go head to head once again. And, don’t forget the chenille throws for $10. These make great stocking stuffers, surprise gifts for surprise guests, or something to cuddle up with after everyone is gone and you just want to nap. Stores open 11/22/18 5PM
Bath and Body Works is the place to go for body care this Black Friday. Many people forget about it because it’s not necessarily a “big box” department store, but man are they handing out the deals! Their skin care lines and candles will take a price dive on Friday, but probably the most exciting piece is the exclusive tote they will offer. With over $115 worth of items inside including fragrances, candles, skin care, etc, PLUS an adorable, shimmery classic tote, this is a MUST buy. Keep the bag and stuff stockings with everything else! BBW hasn’t released prices yet, but the tote usually runs between $20-35, and everything else will be at discounts you won’t want to miss. Online 11/22/18, Some stores open 6PM
There’s no denying that Walmart wins the tech department award for Black Friday. With a 65” 4K Smart TV running $398 and a PS4 Spiderman Bundle for $199, this is the stop if you have gamers or TV bingers to please at home. Just be prepared for the lines and chaos. They do a good job of keeping things organized, but there is no accounting for that Black Friday excitement! Online 11/21/18 9PM, Stores open 11/22/18 6PM
Tips from a Fellow Shopper
- Start with what you already have in mind. If you go in to Black Friday with a blank slate, there are a million rabbit holes to go down. Before you know it, you have spent $500 on stuff you never intended to buy but you got so excited because everyone else was excited. So, to prepare, scour the ads for what you already know you are looking for. If you know that you are wanting to buy a new camera, compare prices for your favorite model and start at the store with the best bargain. If your goal is sheets, figure out who’s got the best deal and head there first. Scratching off the list before you buy the giant stuffed bear that was only $45 and you just had to have because there was only one left and you could see the other lady in the aisle running toward it will make you feel much more accomplished by the time you are done.
- Look at the ads first. Every October I download the Black Friday app. Ya, there’s an app for that. I get notifications every time there is a new ad from a mainstream store that becomes available, and by the time Turkey Day rolls around, I’ve got my Black Friday all planned out. This is helpful for several reasons. Many stores open at different times on Thursday night/Friday morning, and it’s useful to see them all in one place. Second, it helps me do what I talked about in number one, plan for what I already know I need. In the search feature, you can type in an item, and it will bring up all of the stores that are going to carry it and what their Black Friday deal will be for that item.
- Be patient. Everybody and their grandmother (literally) will be out doing the same thing you are doing. Expect to wait in line. Expect to get jostled a little by other people. Expect to have to wait to get to the front of a display because everyone else is also trying to do the same thing. Expect things to get messy as shoppers throw unwanted items willy-nilly. Expect to see people you know. Expect to have to check a price. In short, don’t do Black Friday if you are on a certain timetable or need to be somewhere else fast. It’s an event. Many of the larger stores like Target, JCPenny, and others will offer hot chocolate and snacks to the line to help people stay in a good mood. Remember to stay jolly.
Whatever you do, take your mom, your bestie, or your significant other, and make a party out of it. I will be out there, probably hunting down the last sherpa throw at Target, so feel free to say hi if you see me! And if the lady I’m chasing took the last one, catch her!