Six tips on making the most of Black Friday

When you wake up on the couch from your turkey and pie-induced coma, you should seriously consider all of the great deals that you’ve been hearing about for Black Friday. As a seasoned expert who shops on this day every year, I have learned how to navigate the mayhem of Black Friday.

Here are some tips to best take advantage of this glorious day:

1. Find people who have the same commitment to Black Friday as you do. 

Photo courtesy of JF Schmitz / Flickr

No one likes to shop on this day alone.  Especially when you need someone to hold a spot in the massive lines. This person cannot be whining after an hour when you’re still going strong. They must want to take advantage of the great deals just as much as you do.


2. Set your alarm to wake up early. 

Photo courtesy of Alan Cleaver / Flickr

Shopping on Black Friday can be absolutely miserable if you have to wrestle with the lady next to you for the last size small. Everyone’s body heat makes the store a thousand degrees higher than it already was, and the lines snake out the door. You need to get to the mall, or wherever you intend on shopping, when it opens.

Note: This DOES NOT mean that you need to stand outside for the stampede with the rest of the lunatics. A lot of department stores open earlier than the rest of the mall and offer deals that only last until mid-morning. So trust me, it’s worth it.

3. Clip your coupons. 

Photo courtesy of Web Design Hot / Wikimedia Commons

I don’t care how early it is when you wake up; shopping in a department store on Black Friday is not worth it without your coupons. Make sure that you check the huge pile of mail in your house for any coupons that have been sent to you. Bring your student ID, too.  Some stores such as Madewell and J.Crew have a 15 percent year-round discount for students.


4. Figure out a plan of attack. 

Photo courtesy of Dave Pearson / Flickr

We always hit the department stores first. Like I said, they open earlier, often with special deals, and these are always the worst when they get too crowded. Getting help from an employee in a smaller store is always easier on a normal day, let alone Black Friday.


5. Wear comfortable shoes and leave your coat in the car. 

Photo courtesy of Dustin / Wikimedia Commons

Yes, your shoes may be cute, but if they are cutting into your feet an hour later while you’re standing in line, you might as well give up on Black Friday. Any store you shop in is going to get hot, so that winter coat that you don in the morning is going to be a pain to carry around with your purse and shopping bags.


6. Eat a good breakfast. 

Photo courtesy of c.a. muller / Flickr

Even if it’s on the go, stopping to eat in between stores is simply not an option. By the time you get through the line or pay your breakfast check, the mall or store you’re going to is going to be 10 times more packed.

Good luck, and may the best deals and steals be with you!