Black Friday is less than three weeks away which means that if you are going to shop at Wal Mart that day, you better wear a flak jacket so you won’t get hurt if you are trampled. Instead, take advantage of the myriad of early Black Friday deals that are already occurring, and emerge unscathed.
The economy is improving, but retailers are still anxious to move product sooner than later, so check out sites like Black Friday 2010 that are tracking ads for you. Also, as readers know, I am a big fan of online shopping, so peruse your credit card website for discounted shopping opportunities and other less conventional sources, too. I have discussed many of them in the past. For example, I just got this email from Visa about their discounted shopping opportunities.
And, if you are lucky enough to own a smartphone, sit in your car and scan store ads and other discounts first before venturing out in the cold from store to store and battling crowds. There are so many “apps” for shopping for both the iPhone and Android, including bar code scanning and mobile coupons, that you will be hard pressed not to find a deal.
Lastly, if you do plan on heading out to the mall on Black Friday and get hungry, remember this: either bring a pen or calculator and figure your tip yourself. Restaurants will occasionally provide a “handy” tip table at the bottom of the receipt for you. However, make sure that they are using the subtotal (or pre-tax total) as opposed to the food + drinks + tax total to figure the tip for you. Otherwise, it’s a trick to get you to over-tip.
With a little planning, the holiday shopping season can be fun, and reward you with savings.