Ready to take on the Black Friday sales this year? You will be after learning these handy tips to tackle it like a pro.
Make a list first
The most important thing to do is prepare. It can be easy to get overwhelmed by the multitude of deals and offers available on Black Friday; you can run the risk of overspending or buying items you’ve never even wanted in the first place. If you’re planning to do your Christmas gift shopping on Black Friday, write a list of recipients beforehand, with the budget and an idea of what you want to buy them. If you’re looking for specific items for yourself or others, make a note of the regular prices to see how much of a saving you might be getting on the day.
If you don’t want to tackle the crowds in your local city centre (we don’t blame you), consider doing your Black Friday shopping online. Mega sales take place on most major retailer websites, plus you can check the price against other stores in just a few clicks - rather than traipsing up and down the high street.
Look at the price, not the saving
This is an important one. Savings look attractive but can often be inflated. Which.co.uk claim that in their experience retailers can “exaggerate the discount you're actually getting”. It’s important to consider the price as a standalone figure and ask yourself if it’s still worth it.
Check coupon code sites
If you do choose to shop online instead of hitting the high street, make sure you double-check coupon code sites for extra discounts or free shipping codes. Sometimes you won’t be able to use these codes with Black Friday offers, but it’s worth checking. These sites can also be a good way to see all the best offers in one place. We’d recommend vouchercodes.co.uk, HotUKDeals and finder.com.
Sign up to Newsletters
If there are certain retailers you’re excited about, sign up to their newsletters online. You might score a sign-up coupon, exclusive deal or get early access to their Black Friday deals. It’s also worth signing up to newsletters from general money-saving sites. Look out for our Black Friday special email next week to see our top picks of the best offers, straight to your inbox.
Be an early bird
Look out for early-bird sales - some retailers start discounting before Black Friday, so if it’s a popular item you’re after, it could pay to get in first. If you’re a night owl, you might want to consider doing some online shopping at midnight the night before Black Friday, this is often when the sales are released (if not earlier), so you’ll get first dibs.
Prepare for the high street
If you’ve decided to head out and do your shopping at bricks and mortar stores, we’d recommend you prepare by:
Wrapping up warm, it’s likely to be chilly out
Taking a bottle of water with you to stay hydrated and some cereal bars for energy
Wearing a cross-body bag (that closes properly), you’ll be able to keep your money and cards in front of you and avoid any pickpocketing or bag snatching
Consider travel deals too
It’s not only physical items that Black Friday is good for, travel sites often get in on the action too. Have you been hankering for a holiday or waiting to book a flight? Check some of the travel giants this Black Friday and you might score a bargain - we suggest Expedia and Skyscanner as good places to start.
Remember that the deals are likely to last all weekend
Even though it’s called ‘Black Friday’ there’s no need to panic if you can’t get the Friday off work to go shopping - more often than not the deals tend to last all weekend, and through Cyber Monday as well. You might decide it’s easier for you to visit the shops on Sunday morning or after work on Monday.
Check the returns policy
While buying goods in a big sale event doesn’t change your consumer rights, The Telegraph suggests considering rules and exceptions before making a big purchase. Here’s where you can read up on your rights around Black Friday purchases.
Disclaimer: All information and links are correct at the time of publishing.