11 Reasons You Should Shop on Black Friday


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moving shopper with Black Friday bag
Photo credit: shironosov/istockphoto

Picture this: Snow flakes falling outside, a piping hot coffee in your hand, decorated Christmas trees, live Christmas music playing in the background, your best friend by your side, a hearty breakfast waiting in the wings, jolly shoppers bustling around you, and huge flashing sale signs everywhere you turn. No, this isn't a dream. This is what Black Friday shopping can be. It doesn't have to be a nightmare. While there are crazy stories every year about fights and beleaguered retail workers being forced to work, the reality is that Black Friday shopping can actually be a fun and beneficial day for all involved.

family with children shopping at holiday market
Photo credit: JackF/istockphoto

For many people, November and December are the busiest months of the year. There is so much to do between holiday parties, baking, decorations, and, of course, gift buying. But what if you could get all the gift buying done and out of the way in one day? And at a discount. Worth it? Yes. With proper planning, you can hit every store you need on Black Friday without worrying about closing times. Most are actually open all weekend. Black Friday is the day to literally shop until you drop and get most or all of your holiday gift buying done, so you have the rest of the season to enjoy with family and friends, and not stressing over gifts.

'out of stock' sign in empty hook display
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Remember Pie Face last year? Typically there are a few hot items every holiday season that are sure to sell out quickly and be gone until after the big day. Shopping on Black Friday gives you the best chance to get your hands on the newest and greatest rage of the year. If you check out with it, it's yours. It won't be a canceled order, which can happen when shopping online.

happy women going shopping in warm clothes during holiday season
Photo credit: davidf/istockphoto

Sure some people are like Scrooge on Black Friday -- rude and pushy, but for the most part, shoppers are having fun with it. The crowds tend to be cheerful, the stores and malls are decked out in their holiday glory, Christmas music is on full blast, and everywhere you look there is holiday cheer. If this doesn't get you in the holiday spirit, what will?

young family sightseeing and shopping at Christmas markets
Photo credit: davidf/istockphoto

For many, the annual Black Friday shopping spree has become a tradition. You'll see mothers and daughters, best friends, and spouses shopping. And the stories will live on for years to come. Cap off the outing with a nice breakfast to commemorate all your savings.

two piggy banks with santa hats with Christmas presents and tree in background
Photo credit: CatLane/istockphoto

Every year retailers outdo themselves trying to lure consumers to their stores. The sales are strong, and the deals are typically the best of the year. You will definitely get what you need for a savings if you choose to brave the crowds. But, Black Friday deals are often only available in person.

customers check out the Black Friday deals at Best Buy
Photo credit: Canadapanda/shutterstock

Not only are sales impressive to begin with, but many stores offer doorbusters and giveaways to lure even more people. These are typically reserved for the first people through the doors until supplies run out, so be sure to head out early to snatch up any you want.

Santa Claus with sack catching dollars
Photo credit: maurusone/istockphoto

The name Black Friday had somewhat negative connotations, until more recent years. In the past, it was a term used by the Philadelphia Police Department to describe its worst day of the year. No officer was allowed to call off, and all were scheduled in order to help control traffic and keep the crowds under control on the city's biggest shopping and college football day of the year. More recently, retailers everywhere have embraced the term and refer to it as an accounting holiday where retail stores are able to jump from the "red" to the "black" for the first time of the year. According to the National Retail Federation, Black Friday 2016 was a strong year for the retail economy with over 154 million shoppers spending an average of $289.19 per person. This year will be no different. The NRF predicts an even stronger and more profitable holiday shopping season starting with a strong Black Friday.

mature couple shopping for appliances
Photo credit: alvarez/istockphoto

Need a new refrigerator or other large appliance? Can you hold out until Black Friday? You are sure to find rock-bottom prices on furniture, appliances, and more large-ticket items that you might not consider among the normal Black Friday mix of gift items.

shopping for shoes on Black Friday
Photo credit: arinahabich/istockphoto

Sure, Black Friday means long lines and crowds, but so does the rest of the holiday shopping season. And shopping in person on Black Friday (or any day after) gives you the advantage of trying items on, touching them, and seeing them up close, while shopping online is sometimes a guessing game. This way you at least avoid getting a gift you would need to return because the quality isn't what you expected. Shopping in the store on Black Friday means you at least know exactly what you're getting. No surprises.

family shopping in mall during holiday season
Photo credit: M_a_y_a/istockphoto

Shopping in the store means no shipping fees or waiting for your items to arrive. Black Friday is no different and gives you the benefit of avoiding shipping costs as well as the instant gratification of taking your items home with you that same day.

getting shopping bags for woman cashier during holiday season in clothing store
Photo credit: eclipse_images/istockphoto

Yes, there are plenty of people who protest Black Friday and the practice of forcing employees to skip time with loved ones in order to work the holiday. But the truth is that these employees chose to have a job in retail, and the bottom line is they are getting paid to be there -- oftentimes earning extra holiday pay. It is helping them support and provide for themselves and their family. No harm in that.

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