GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Do you know the secrets
to shopping on Black Friday? We all know to get in line early and check out the
flyers ahead of time, but do you REALLY know how to conquer the
Here are a few insider secrets (from an
anonymous Black Friday "shopping professional") to getting what you
want and avoiding disappointment:
1. Set a budget -- It's easy to get
caught up in all the good deals. There's a 47" TV for $274 or a tablet for
$99. You might convince yourself that you NEED to buy them, but if you really
think about it, you're only putting it in your cart because IT'S SUCH A GOOD
DEAL! Don't fall into that trap. Decide what you want to buy ahead of time and
don't spend (too much) more than that. Nothing is worse than getting that
credit card statement in December and groaning at how much you spent.
2. Find a map -- Many chain stores,
including Target and Wal-Mart, will put their big-ticket items in random spots
throughout the store. You might find TVs in the food section and laptops in
Lawn and Garden. It's all in an effort to avoid congestion in the Electronics
department. Those same stores will post their maps online so you can see where
employees will place those highly-coveted $169 TVs.
use a cart -- If you plan to be a part of the Black Friday madness, using a
cart will only slow you down. If you're looking for a big-screen TV or
something else too big to carry, make sure you stake your claim before you grab
a cart. Most aisles are only two carts wide. If you're carrying all of your
purchases, you can easily weave through everyone else who decided to grab a cart.
Avoiding the cart congestion can also keep you in a better mood while you're bargain
wear a coat -- Wearing a coat to brave the elements outside will only drag
you down inside. You'll end up carrying the coat (it'll just get in the way) or
wearing it (waaaaay too warm for all the speed-walking you'll be doing.)
Speaking of speed-walking...
run -- You'll look like a crazy person if you run. Besides, no laptop (or Firby)
is worth tripping and breaking your ankle.
and conquer -- If there are items you really want at two different stores,
split up. You might also ask your dad/husband/brother to pick something up.
That might sound like an unreasonable request, but if it's an item they'll
enjoy (TV, Xbox), they'll be more willing to go.
a getaway driver -- If you can't convince your dad/husband/brother to
actually go INTO the store, maybe they'll be your driver? Parking is a pain
anywhere on Black Friday. If you have a driver on stand-by, you won't have to
hunt down a spot, and you'll be able to cover more territory! More stores =
fun! -- There's nothing worse than equating shopping with working. You have
the day off from work, so don't make it seem like you're working. Many families
consider this a bonding experience.
OK, you've done your homework, now go! That
line outside Target isn't getting any shorter.