Black Friday and Cyber Monday are two of the biggest events in the shopping calendar, falling on the 23rd and 26th of November this year.
First launched in America to mark the Friday and Monday following thanksgiving and the start of Christmas shopping season, the events have now become hugely popular in the UK, too – with retailers, restaurants, travel companies and more slashing their prices for bargain-loving Brits.
So, whether you’re shopping for stocking fillers or your next getaway, here are eight tips that will turn you into a savvy shopper ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
1. Follow your favourites
Start following your favourite retailers or travel companies on Facebook and subscribe to their newsletters. They’ll be keen to let shoppers know about their biggest and best deals before the events.
2. Review and list your must-haves
The amount of deals will be overwhelming, so it helps to create a list of specific things you want to buy. Researching reviews of these items beforehand will also mean you don’t fall into the trap of buying substandard products just because they were half price.
3. Look online before shopping
4. Put together wishlists
Certain retail websites let you create product wishlists. Having all the items you’ve got your eye on in one list will help speed up the purchasing process when prices drop – making sure you get there first!
5. Stick to your budget
These events are essentially huge marketing tactics designed to make us spend as much money as possible. To save you getting caught up in all the excitement, set a realistic budget and stick to it.
6. Check travel sites
A number of travel websites have set up static Black Friday web pages ready for the big event – like these Expedia and easyJet pages – though they’re yet to confirm exactly how they’re getting involved. Still, if you’ve got your eye on a particular destination, spend some time researching prices now, so you know how much of a deal you’re getting come the 23rd.
7. (Pretend to) abandon your basket
If you’re on the fence about a certain item, but would be swayed if it was slightly cheaper, try this: add it to your online basket but don’t complete the purchase. Many retailers contact shoppers a few days later with a discount voucher to inspire them to buy.
8. Buy now, pick up later
If you’re not too keen on battling through hoards of frantic shoppers on Black Friday, some retailers allow you to buy online and pick up from store at a later date, with a typical hold time of a week. Or, of course, you could just hold on until Cyber Monday and hope you get the same discounted product delivered direct to your home.
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