6 Black Friday shopping tricks
For shoppers and deal hunters, the most wonderful time of year is fast approaching. We’re of course talking about Black Friday.
Got visions of doorbusters dancing in your head? Mapping out your shopping schedule as precisely as Santa does his delivery route? Ready to caffeinate and shop late?
Go ahead, pass the turkey and trimmings around the table again and enjoy seconds. We’ll handle the Black Friday logistics — with tips and tricks that will save you money and time on the popular shopping day. (Hey, even the jolly guy himself needs elves!)
Here are 6 strategies for making the most out of Black Friday 2015.
1. Adjust your schedule:
Be aware of store hours when you’re mapping out this year’s route. For example, Best Buy is not staying open around-the-clock this year. The electronics store is opening at 5 p.m. Thanksgiving, 11/26 and closing at 1 a.m. Black Friday, 11/27; re-opening at 8 a.m. Black Friday, 11/27.
Some stores are opening early on Thanksgiving, 11/26 — including JCPenney at 3 p.m., Old Navy at 4 p.m. and Target at 6 p.m. Check out our Black Friday Deals Roundup for more information on store hours and top offers.
2. Dress in layers and wear comfy shoes:
You’ll likely be braving all kinds of elements during your shopping expedition — from waiting in line outdoors to dashing about heated stores. Dress in layers and wear your comfiest shoes. We’re loving the North Face “James” Insulated Jacket because it’s not too bulky, and the “Heatseeker” technology will keep you cozy if you’re camped outside. If you’re shopping solo, pack a Kindle, book or have some games loaded on your smart phone to keep you entertained while you wait in long lines.
3. Gift Card Granny:
Shop with discounted gift cards! If you know what stores you’ll be hitting up, purchase a discounted gift card online ahead of time from sites like Gift Card Granny, a marketplace where people sell their unwanted gift cards. You can buy gift cards for up to 50 percent off the value of the card at popular retailers, restaurants and even grocery stores.
4. Shop with the right credit card:
Make sure you’re taking advantage of your credit card rewards. Some credit cards have rotating categories for cash back offers and you need to be sure to activate them. The Discover IT card, for example, is offering 5 percent Cash Back on up to $1,500 spent at department stores and clothing stores through the end of the quarter that ends Dec. 31, 2015. Existing cardholders with Citi Dividend Platinum Select Visa cards get 5 percent Cash Back at Best Buy and department stores in the fourth quarter. So long as you don’t allow interest to add up, signing up for retail credit cards at the stores you shop at regularly can also net you savings and rewards. Target’s Red Card holders, for example, get 5 percent Cash Back on all of their purchases.
5. Compare prices in-store:
Want to make sure you’re getting the best deal? Install a price-comparing app on your phone that will allow you to scan bar codes and compare prices at nearby stores. Some popular ones? Red Laser, Price Grabber and Shop Savvy.
6. Shop online:
Many stores are offering the same deals online as they are in-store. Cozy up next to the fireplace, crack open your laptop and shop from the comfort of your own home. In fact, you might be able to save even more because you can earn Cash Back on your purchases when you shop with ShopAtHome.com. Shop a sale, earn Cash Back and use a credit card that also earns you rewards for a holiday savings hat trick! Check out our article with Black Friday Online Shopping Tips for more advice!