Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Surviving Black Friday

Black Friday has got to be the only day of the year I actually love to shop. I get a thrill from getting great deals and getting done with all my Christmas shopping in one day. What adds to my excitement is seeing how fast I can get in and out of a store. I typically try to go to just 3 stores, Lowes, Michaels, and Walmart. Lowes has the best deals for gifts for The Doctor. Michaels is of course for me. Then walmart I price match all the deals at the other stores plus take advantage of their deals. Here is how I survive Black Friday.

Thanksgiving day I lay out all the ads. I place the ones advertising items on my list in one pile and toss the others. Then I go through and see which store has the best prices on items. I will make a master list of the things I want, how much they are and at what store. When I go to Walmart I have all the ads with me and know which ad to price match for which item.

Once I know what I want I will coordinate with a buddy. Last year it was The Doctor and we had a blast. This year we will be with  more family so there will be more of us which should make things easier. We divide up who is responsible for getting which items and then we meet back at the front to check out.

I usually arrive to Walmart an hour before their sales begin. I grab a cart and place all the items I am price matching in the cart and then I stash the cart down some aisle, usually cosmetics or even bedding. I carry with me a big bag that I can carry on my shoulder. Trying to push a cart through the crowds on black Friday is insane so I just put my items in the bag. I can weave in and out of people much faster. As I am making my way through the store I seek out the "hot ticket" items on my list that are sure to go fast. I then station myself by the most wanted item but in a way I can grab and go to the next place as fast as possible. Meanwhile my partner is at the other side of the store doing the same thing.

While we usually have the cheap movies on our list we don't stress if we don't get them because they can be a time warp if we try and maneuver around the hoards of people digging through them. Typically we have everything we want with in 15 minutes and are checked out in another 15 minutes giving us plenty of time to get to the next stores before they open. The last 2 years I have been in and out of all my stores and home in 2 hours. This gives me plenty of time to stash the goods before the kids wake up.

Black Friday holds the excitement for me that Christmas morning did for me as a child. I get such a rush and I enjoy picking out all the gifts at most excellent prices. This year I may even get in on the cyber Monday action.

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