The holidays are fast approaching and Black Friday is a tradition I’ve been doing with family and friends for years. I personally am very specific about the day and thought I would share with you how I prepare and shop on Black Friday.
1. Do your research: A majority of the ads are leaked prior to Black Friday so spend some time checking them out. Not only will this save you time, but also help you to figure out what you want to buy and where you want to go. Bonus Tip: Make your list while doing your research!
2. Don’t Shop Alone: Lets be honest it’s always more fun to shop with others, but keep the group small, all in 1 car. You can strategize who waits in line and they can help you make the decision if you really should buy that sweater for yourself because it’s such a good deal or tell you to put it back. Also, if you can, leave the kids at home. I know it’s hard, but you’ll be glad you did.
3. Map our your route: This may seem silly, but if you are shopping with others you need to know where everyone wants to go and what store you should hit up first. A lot of bigger ticket items are limited and if you’re hoping to snag something big you need to be there early.
4. Make an itinerary: This can be written on a sheet of paper or you can go all out with print offs and graphics. Doing this gives everyone a heads up for how much time they have in a store and allows you to hit more places. Before you walk into a store I suggest you all agree on what time you’ll either meet to check out or at the front door. This also helps for the people who may not want to shop in that store. Just remember to be flexible, the itinerary is more like a guide and doesn’t need to be followed to a T. You can download a copy of my template HERE!
5. Wear comfy shoes and clothes: This is not the time to bust out that new dress or super cute shoes you just got. You should wear things you can stand around in (AKA lines) and that make you feel comfortable, I don’t care if it’s sneakers, yoga pants, jeans or your favorite hooded sweatshirt, wear what makes you feel like you can run the store and be in line in under 20 minutes! I also suggest you leave the coats in the car and bring a smaller purse.
6. Bring your own bags: I’m all about going green so bringing your own reuseable bags not only helps the earth, but also makes it easier to know which bag it yours.
7. Don’t forget your coupons/ads: A lot of places use extra coupons or price match comparisons so make sure you grab a newspaper, yes they still have those, and/or print all your coupons out prior to walking out the door. Nothing is worse than getting to the store and realizing you don’t have that coupon for an extra % or $$ off. Take the time and be prepared
8. Snacks and Drinks: You need to stay hydrated and happy so bring a few bottles of water in the car and pack a few snacks, granola bars, chocolate, whatever keeps your energy up and plan for a lunch, coffee or snack break!
9. Do I need this?: It’s very easy as you’re walking around to pick up things that may not be on your list. As you’re waiting to checkout look through your cart and ask your self if you need everything you’ve grabbed. While the deals may be really good it’s important to remember to stay within your budget. Also, keep all your receipts so if you do have to return anything before or after the holiday you’ll be good to go.
10. Be kind and have fun: There’s no need to push, fight or yell. The holidays are about kindness and giving. I’ve had some great conversations with random people while waiting in line or trying to find a certain item. If you find yourself getting frustrated or upset take a moment and think about the bigger picture.
Black Friday is about getting great deals and kicking off the holiday season! If you are crazy enough to head out in the crowds remember to have a great time and say thank you to all that are working because not only will they feel appreciated, but they’ll know you have the spirit of the holidays in your mind!