Conquer the infamous day of deals and energetic shoppers

Katie McDermott, Contributing Writer

 

For some, the day after Thanksgiving is a day to digest all the turkey they ate the night before and to relax with family.  However, for many others, the day after Thanksgiving takes on a whole different meaning.  Millions of bargain hunters flock to their favorite stores and line up, waiting for the best deals on anything from the latest boots to the new iPhone.

One of the busiest shopping days of the year in the United States is Black Friday, and it is considered the unofficial beginning of the holiday season.  It is a day when Americans can do their holiday shopping while saving money.

But how did this phenomenon even start? Ever since the first Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1924, the Friday after Thanksgiving has been recognized as the unofficial launch day of the holiday shopping season.  However, it was not until the 1960s that “Black Friday” became an official term.

Originally, accounting records were handwritten.  Red ink represented a store’s loss, while black ink referenced a profit in sales.  Because of the increase in consumerism during the end of the fall-winter season, businesses found themselves using black ink more often.  Retailers are said to make the most money during this season, with approximately twenty to forty percent of annual revenue being collected in November and December.  Once retailers began to realize just how receptive people were to saving money, they decided to discount their prices in order to attract a larger crowd of people and make a greater profit.  From this began the Black Friday spectacle.

“I usually go to Roosevelt Field Mall at about 10 p.m. on Thursday with my mom and sister,” said junior and veteran Black Friday shopper Allison Yu.  “My sister and I usually shop while my mom waits on line for us.  One time she had to wait for almost four hours!  Shopping on Black Friday is definitely worth it.  There are amazing sales in various stores, and you are able to get tons of cute clothes for a very low price.”

So if you are thinking about going Black Friday shopping this year, here are some tips that you can use on your shopping adventure to help get you the most bang for your buck:

Make sure that you do your research beforehand.

Browse the sales before you go in order to figure out which retailers will be having the greatest sales.  By deciding where you want to go and at what time, you will feel less overwhelmed and anxious.  Additionally, if you are planning on purchasing an expensive item this year, it is essential that you do your homework on the product first.

Get there early.   Chances are, there will be thousands of other people just like you who are in search of those coveted sales.  By getting to the store early, you will be almost guaranteed to get a great deal. Try Best Buy for flat screen TVs starting at $200.

Divide and conquer.  Most likely, you will be going to more than one store that day. Because of the numerous amazing sales, many products will sell out fast.  That is why it is important to go with your friends or family.  By having a group of people with you, you can split up, and assign each member in your group a certain store or product to search for.  This way you can get the best deals while going to all of your favorite stores!

Have fun!  Although Black Friday is known for being the most competitive day of the year for shoppers, it should also be a day to reflect on what you already own.  The holiday season is a time to be thankful for your blessings and to spend time with the people you love.  It is important to remember that you and your loved ones are much more important than the gifts you will be giving and receiving this holiday season. But of course, who doesn’t love a great sale?

If you don’t get the best deals on Black Friday, don’t be discouraged!  There are still tons of other opportunities leading up to the holidays to finish all of your shopping and eliminate the stress of spending too much.