What Is Black Friday and Does It Affect Me?

Fun fact: Black Friday falls on the day after Thanksgiving and is a fantastic opportunity to take advantage of crazy sales and mega discounts. You can expect to stay up late or wake up early to get your hands on an item you want. It’s all in the name of the game!


What are its origins?

Back in the day, Black Friday was limited to the fourth Friday in November, may have started as a single Friday in the fourth week of November. But as retailers have seen how profitable it has become, they have extended the special day to several, even up to weeks before and after the holiday. 

If you want to really succeed at Black Friday, you should start keeping track of the “original” prices of items you might want to buy, to make sure that you are avoiding price-bloating for the sake of creating the illusion of a discount!


Things to look out for.

Extended warranties – run the other way! Although this is a good rule of thumb in general, it holds particularly true on Black Friday. Stores want to cover themselves in case they break even on certain sales during Black Friday, and the income generated from offering extended warranties is a clever (even sneaky) way of doing this. Don’t undo all your savings and deals  by investing in something you are unlikely to use! 

Learn how to tell the good from the bad. Slapping a massive discount on an inferior product that isn’t selling well is not an act of kindness. Retailers are businesses, and you have to bear in mind that they still need to make their turnover. Go for brand names you know and trust – pay a bigger price for quality, rather than buying discounted trash.

Fake deals and dodgy websites also have a way of surfacing during Black Friday. Double check to make sure your online checkout method is secure, and only buy from retailers you trust. Clickthrough from emails are almost ALWAYS a no-go. Identity theft and phishing is common, and there are criminals who try to take advantage of people under pressure. Stick to reputable sites, use extra verification methods, and remember that if it seems too good to be true… than it probably is!


How to get started.

In this case, the HOW is not as important as the WHEN, to which the answer is – as soon as you can! All the good deals are scheduled for earlier, but even if you miss those, the simple matter of stock running out becomes an issue the longer you wait.

The weeks leading up to Black Friday will give you a good idea of what is out there, what the prices are (handy for comparison closer to the time) and what kind of stock you might be seeing on the shelves. Stay awake when you see wording like “limited offer” or “only X number of units in stock”. This is a manipulation tactic to get your money out of your hands – use your head and buy with caution.


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