Your Guide to Black Friday Shopping- Part 5

Ok, so you’ve scoured the ads, you’ve made your holiday budget, and you’ve decided what gifts you want to give everyone.  How do you make a game plan and prepare for the big day?

Depending on what time you go, you’ll probably want some coffee to take with you.  You don’t want to be late to the sales just because you had to drive through to get a coffee or because you stepped out of the line!  Whether you are a night owl or an early bird, some coffee can help you wake up and get ready for the challenge of Black Friday shopping.  Just make sure you brew it at home to save money, and take a thermos with you to keep it nice and hot!  If you’re not a coffee person, bringing some hot cocoa is a must, especially if you will be waiting outside a store for it to open.  A couple times during my Black Friday adventures, stores have had employees handing out cups of hot cocoa, but I wouldn’t count on that!  It’s best to be prepared to you don’t impulse buy a hot drink.

You’re also going to want to make sure you bundle up if you will be standing outside for awhile.  Think about what you would wear to a cold Husker football game.  For late night and early morning shoppers, the sun will be down, and temperatures will drop.  Throw on hats, scarves, gloves, and heavy coats.  Just make sure you have coat pockets that will fit your gloves so that once you get in the store you can take them off and grab all of the good deals!

You also need to make sure that your cell phone is completely charged.  It may also be wise to have a car charger in your car if your phone doesn’t hold a charge very well.  If you are going with another person/s, one person can stand in line while the others shop, and you’ll need to be in communication with them.  And of course, remember to get as much sleep as you can if you’re going to be waking up early, or schedule some extra sleeping time in the morning if you’re going to stay up late so that you aren’t cranky while you’re watching the Nebraska/Iowa football game. 🙂

You’re going to want to make a game plan before you go.  Figure out what stores have the deals you want to get.  Then write down the store name, the items, and the time the store opens.  If multiple stores open at the same time, you will have to decide which store you want to go to the most.  Plan for 1.5- 2 hours for the first store and be flexible with your schedule.  If you have a prioritized list, then you can easily see the next store you want to go to.  If you get to a store and they are out of what you want or you determine that the line is too long, you can quickly head to the next store on your list.

Just remember to have fun, and don’t take it too seriously.  There will be items that will run out before you get there.  Your plan B can always be to look out for the items you missed online during the weekend or on Cyber Monday.  Remember, you will still have almost a month after Black Friday to finish your Christmas shopping!  It is always more pleasant if you can make small talk with the other people in line while you are waiting.  Keep in mind that everyone is trying to get good deals on gifts for their loved ones, just like you.  There is no need for pushing, cussing, or hostility toward one another.  Have fun and good luck getting the great deals!