Don’t let this be you!
If you are not prepared, then you should not be out with the early bird, die hard BF shoppers.
Here is some honest advice that may help you or the people around you navigate the craziest shopping day of the year:
1. Leave the kids home
Black Friday morning is for die-hard shoppers. Do not drag your child in their PJ’s to wait in line at 3:00 a.m. They may be sleeping when you leave the house, but trust me– they will wake up (and most likely scream bloody murder) when they see all the crazy, die-hards in line in the freezing cold. If you want to participate in BF early bird activities and can’t get a sitter, then let the kids sleep and do your shopping online. Trust me– you will wish you had stayed home as soon as the baby starts screaming.
2. Make a list and check it twice
Have a game plan. This isn’t a day to leisurely look around and see what spontaneous things are going to catch your eye. If you were planning on being leisurely, wait until after 1:00 p.m. to hit the stores. In other words, stay out of my way. Us die-hards have a mission to accomplish. We need to get in, grab, and get out. There’s nothing worse than a leisurely shopper who wants to chat about how cute the snow globes are or ask your opinion on some gift they are thinking of getting and want to know if I think 25% off is a good deal (the answer will be a quick, sharp, resounding “NO”). Price comparison shop now! Do not break out your Droid and decide to comparison shop in the middle of the aisles that morning.
Know what your total is going to be BEFORE the cashier hits subtotal. Take a calculator with you to stay on track. Do the math at home the night before and be sure you can afford to be buying what you are buying. Nothing worse than going broke and not being able to make your mortgage payment in order to buy Timmy a new video game system. Given the choice, I am sure all children would prefer a safe and sound home over a gaming system. If not, then maybe this would be a good time to take a closer look and see what’s really important in life. Keeping up with the Jones’ kids isn’t going to mean squat if you get a foreclosure notice.
3. Be Friendly but not chatty
Don’t chat it up with the cashier at 5 a.m. There’s a line. Keep it moving.
4.Prepare the night before
Make sure the gas tank is full. Have all your ads ready for price matching, pack snacks and plenty of liquids to keep yourself hydrated. BF is the Shopping Olympics, so you need to stay hydrated. Wear comfortable shoes or sneakers. Dress in layers. If you are a true die-hard shopper, you will get sweaty, which leads me to #5.
Nothing is worse than being in a hot crowded line with someone who ran out the door at 4:00 a.m. without putting on deodorant. Correction: the worst is standing next to someone who forgot deodorant and is also holding a screaming baby.
6.Divide and conquer
Black Friday isn’t a place for a “girls meet up.” You can do that after the shopping is done. If you truly want to get everything on your list, then enlist friends and relatives to divide and conquer the stores together. If you do Kohl’s, have someone else do Toys R Us while someone else takes on Walmart. Be sure you all have cell phones, so you can update each other on who got what.
7.Stalk your stores tonight!
If there is an Early Bird item you just have to have like a TV, think twice about trying to be the fastest to the electronics aisle. The Early Bird TV’s may actually be in the Men’s department! Stores are known for putting pallets of things around the outside aisles of the store and not always in the most obvious spot. If you go out to the stores tonight, you will be able to see where all the displays are and when everyone is running to the right side of the store you can stage left to the opposite side where the display is and grab the deal of the day!
8. Be careful!
All jokes aside, Black Friday can get out of control and there actually have been people hurt and even killed on Black Friday. Do not push, pull, or shove to get what you want. Remember human decency and no TV or popcorn cart is worth anyone’s life… but I still call dibs on that popcorn cart!