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How to prepare for Black Friday shopping

 Here’s our guide to help you have a successful shopping experience on Black Friday this year.

Black Friday November 2017
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Black Friday shopping in-store can be a test of anyone's patience. It's usually a day of sales, queues, pushing, screaming, fighting, and spending money we sometimes do not have.

While a big event in the Unites States, in South Africa it is thought the day became more and more popular as large retailers also started following the American trend and offering great sales on the day.

This year, Black Friday is happening on 24 November, and is pegged to be the biggest South Africa has seen to date. Various stores are already marketing their day and telling us what time they will be open. Some are even extending their shopping hours. 

Although we could argue the need for a public holiday, we don’t think the powers that be will find it a compelling enough reason to grant us time off? Many people who really prepare for the day take leave to queue and shop.

So, perhaps you missed the boat last year with Black Friday and have been left to wonder how your friend afforded 10 pairs of shoes in one go or your mate bought that awesome gas braai, which costs an arm and a leg, you have always wanted? Well, don’t be left behind this year…

Mental preparation

You need to ready yourself for staring, pulling, and tugging contests - and self-doubt. Exercise your mind – do not be overly impulsive, think about what it is that you really need, where you can get it cheaper, and if it really is cheap or does it look like it amongst all the branding? Then exercise your grip, catch, and pull reflexes.

The queues are going to be really long and even though you might be number two, the wait for the doors to open could strain your brain, so take some light reading (ideally the store’s pamphlet, your shopping list or your calming mantra) and stock up on your mobile data! There are some deals which will be exclusively available online, however these deals are not to be confused with Cyber Monday (which is the Monday after Black Friday).

Physical preparation

Doors on Black Friday usually open really early in the morning with some retailers or when the clock strikes midnight and it is on a first come first serve basis. So, take a foldable chair, a fleece blanket, a flask, and an umbrella and Wellingtons in case it rains. Remember to stay hydrated.

Sometimes people have been known to be pushed aside when the doors eventually open – exercise restraint, mind your language, and speak with your inner voice.

Money preparation  

Please budget. The economy is not very friendly to impulse buy. Try and not buy things you do not need. Do your best to stay within the budget you have set yourself no matter how tempting a deal is. Charge your purchases to your credit card as this is safer and cheaper than using cash or your debit card.

If you’re buying big items like a fridge or television, arrange delivery with the store as usually they have a free service within a particular radius of the store. If you’re purchasing online, remember to still be very aware that you are not sharing your credit card details with suspicious sites and do not fall prey to phishing scams.

Remember, look for the best deals, compare prices, make a list of items you wish to buy, and stick to a budget. You should also read up on return policies, be prepared to wait in long lines, wear comfortable clothes and shoes, and bring snacks and drinks with you.

Happy shopping!

ALSO READ: 10 ways to save on your grocery bill


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