Checking the returns policy, doing some digging before you hit the shops and bringing a bargain buddy are some of the top tips on how to make the most of Black Friday.
The penny-pinching gurus at PromotionalCodes.org.uk have come up with the best ways to exploit the major discount event.
Pointers include tactics on how to tackle the manic shops, like prepping in advance, looking in unexpected areas of the shop and having a tag team system.
They also include ways to take advantage of Cyber Monday too, like signing up to retailer websites before the day, so you don’t waste precious time at the checkout.
There are also handy reminders on how to avoid temptation over the weekend, so you don’t waste your hard-earned money on purchasing items just because they’re in the sale.
They’ve also highlighted the pitfalls stores may get you to fall into, like signing up for special offer store credit cards that cost you more in the long run.
Darren Williams from PromotionalCodes.org.uk said: “Black Friday has always been huge in the States, but it’s only in the past few years it’s started to become a big deal in the UK.
“Last year there were chaotic scenes at some of the stores, but if you keep your head screwed on there doesn’t have to be pandemonium at the checkouts.
“Taking a friend with you is one of the best tips, they can help you find your most sought out treasures and can act as a stabiliser when you need to stop spending money.”
Here are the site’s do’s and don’ts for Black Friday.
- Don’t buy just for the sake of it
The price tag might make it seem like an amazing bargain, but do you really need it? And if it’s a present for someone, ask yourself, will they really like it? Just because you’re making a saving doesn’t mean you’re getting your money’s worth.
- Don’t wait in line for a shopping trolley
Bring large reusable bags to carry your items so you don’t have to make the rookie mistake of queuing for a trolley. If you queue, you could potentially miss out on important things you want to purchase.
- Don’t assume a good deal is a great deal
Hold off a little longer for Cyber Monday, especially for smaller items as there’s a high chance your item will be even further reduced.
- Don’t treat it as last chance saloon
Black Friday is a great time to save money but it isn’t the only time of year you can make huge savings. If you can’t get your dream item for the price you want, don’t settle. Wait until January sales or summer discounts.
- Don’t be fooled into store credit cards
Stores might try and entice you to sign up to their credit card scheme for an extra discount. This is a big no as you’ll still be paying for the items months after and it will encourage you to spend over your budget.
- Don’t overdo it
Try not to tackle your whole Christmas shopping list in one day. Restrict yourself to purchasing no more than seven items per store, this way you can lift the pressure off yourself a little. Remember, you can always purchase online through Cyber Monday as well.
- Do check out online and paper ads
Cut out ads from papers and bookmark your favourite sales online to help remind you what you really want.
- Do pull up apps whilst you’re shopping
Did you know that despite retailers discounting items on Black Friday, there are still places online that are even cheaper? Find the most inexpensive place to buy the item you want before you hit the shops, then compare prices through your phone whilst shopping.
- Do use coupons and vouchers
Don’t just stop at the store’s discount. When applicable try and use a discount voucher where possible, they’ll be lots available online specifically for the occasion. Also, remember to subscribe to emails from retailers you know you’ll be visiting at least 14 days before Black Friday, so you can keep up to date with their offers and weekend store opening times for the event.
- Do check the returns policy
Chances are you’ll be buying things in a bit of a rush on Black Friday so make sure you’re familiar with the store’s returns policy in case your product is faulty.
- Do your research
Make sure you plan ahead so you know exactly what stores you are going to and a rough idea of what you are going to purchase. It is also important to prioritise your shopping list with your ‘must-have’ items at the top. Then plan your trip in a way that gives you the best chance of getting everything you need before stock runs out. It is also important to make note of the store openings as well, because some open earlier than others.
- Do go for quality not quantity
If a shop is advertising their Black Friday sale as one of the biggest ever with thousands of deals, be cautious. Just because there are a lot of deals, doesn’t mean they are necessarily all good. Stick to good honest savings on products you need to buy.
- Do take a friend
Black Friday can get a little manic in the stores so take a bargain buddy with you but split up once you get there. Whoever finishes first can head straight to the tills to be on queue patrol, just put your items with your friend’s and pay them back after.
- Do some digging
The shops are going to be chaotic so if you can’t find your item in it’s usual place don’t panic. Remember to scour every aisle and ask the staff if you still can’t find it.
- Do get online early
For Cyber Monday that is. Save time by making an account with the retailer before the big day and update all your billing and shipping addresses. That way you can log on and simply press buy without putting any hassle on timed checkout baskets.
- Do bring cash
If you are worried about being tempted into deals you don’t need then bring your budget in cash and leave the credit cards at home. Don’t ruin your hard work saving by spending more to compensate.
- Do use social media
Before you out head out the door, have a quick scroll through your favourite store’s Twitter feed, they may update it with exclusive deals only available on social media. If you are getting deals from supermarkets, follow your local one for updates on how busy the store is and how much stock is left.