Black Friday and Cyber Monday can be a frugal shopper’s dream: lots of deals on deep discount and all you have to do is wait in line. We’re the masters of waiting in line! But, if you are new to Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping, or new to the frugal lifestyle, here are some tips that might help you before you go into battle.
1. Tis the season for Luxurious materials. This isn’t the time to stock up on cotton socks and flannel pajamas. Stores try to deceive you by offering these things at a “black friday price” which may be the same sale price they offer all fall and winter long. This is the time to stock up on those Cashmere sweaters, scarves and gloves. Also, this would be a great time to check out deals on Silk and Satin. Macy’s and JCPenney seem to have deals on these items every year for black friday. Plus, this are wonderful gifts to give to family since, for the most part, you know they won’t buy it for themselves during the year.
2. Cash in on electronics. This is very much a given for Black Friday, and definitely for Cyber Monday, but if you see an awesome deal on Electronics, Video Games or those hot new toys, take advantage. We are very lucky to have the Black Friday ads available to us before the sales start, so browse and check out reviews of the electronics you’re looking to buy. Cyber Monday can be a bit trickier when it comes to review and research, but if there is a particular electronic item or game on a family member’s wishlist, review early and keep a lookout all Cyber Monday for deals on it at the big sites, like Best Buy, Walmart and Amazon.
3. Keep you twitter account open! Twitter is going to be the secret weapon for all Cyber Monday shoppers this year. As soon as a great deal pops up, all the deal sites will be tweeting about them and you’ll have to act fast to cash in. In the same aspect, all of your twitter buddies will be checking into stores on black friday and tweeting about any hidden black friday deals in-store. Just make sure your sweats are on and your shoes are right by the door so you can get those deals too!
4. Start playing the drugstore game. This is the perfect time to start getting great deals at your local drugstores. Many drugstores, like CVS, have great black friday deals where you buy a specific product and they give back the amount you paid in store bucks, essentially getting the product for free. With these store bucks, you can buy items you may need for the holiday, like wrapping paper and tape. You can also use the store dollars to get essentials like toilet paper or cold medicine. The best way to cash in on these deals, and these bucks, are to “roll” them into other cash back deals in the coming weeks. That’s how you play the drugstore game!
5. Save those reciepts! Even if you have no intention of returning your purchases from Black Friday/Cyber Monday, always save those reciepts. Some stores have been known to offer a black friday price, but then place those “limited time only” items at a better price closer to Christmas and Hanukkah. You should be able to take that item back and have them give you the difference. Make sure to read the fine print on the reciept to make sure they don’t restrict you from doing so. Walmart is actually price matching this year until 12/27, so keep that in mind while shopping. They will give you back the difference on the price match if you can find, or found a better deal at another store.
6. Watch out for shipping. Ever seen an online deal that was so super cheap, you just had to jump on it? Well, on Cyber Monday, those exist all over the place. What also exists are crazsy high shipping costs. You may get that GPS for only 50 bucks, but they are charging you 12 bucks for shipping. Be careful what you pay for on Cyber Monday. Don’t click that complete order button until you have checked out the shipping. Those hidden shipping fees can quickly bust your budget.
7. Don’t count out your local stores. I think one of the best secrets about Black Friday shopping are your local stores and supermarkets. They have great deals that rival some of these big box stores, but hardly get the traffic that the bigger stores get. Personally, I think they keep them a secret so the employees can cash in on the great prices. Heck, if I worked at my local grocery store I’d hope that no one would find out that secret. They get the Black Friday pricing with an employee discount! If you are scared off of the big crowds on Black Friday, check out what deals your local stores will provide and give them your patronage this year. You won’t be disappointed, and you’ll be less stressed!
8. Don’t forget the free food! Yes, some food places will be offering free pastries, coffee, or other drinks for black friday shoppers. Take advantage! Here in my area, Quick Chek is offering free coffee to their patrons on black friday. Even if you don’t get up to shop that morning, a free cup of joe would be great anytime! Ask around in your area and find out who’s giving out the goodies on the big day.
I hope these few tips end up being helpful to you all. Do you have any extra tricks, tips or secrets to share about how you conquer Black Friday/Cyber Monday?