It's officially the Holiday Shopping season. Stores and online retailers are competing to earn your hard earned dollar. Walmart and Amazon look to retain their titles as the champions of American Holiday shopping. While Target, Ebay, Best Buy, JCPenney, Kohls, and others are also looking for a piece of the Holiday Shopping pie. This year some retailers are depending on this Holiday Season to stay in business, more importantly, Sears and Kmart (which I've already discussed). So, before you hunt for those deals, here are some things to know.
1. If you're gonna shop in stores, don't just focus on one.
You might be tempted to buy the Xbox One 1TB Minecraft bundle at Target with the $20 Gift card Bonus going for $199. However, while this deal sounds awesome other stores offer it for the same price. But they also usually offer higher gift card bonuses. Kohl's will be an example. You get the same Xbox One Bundle, but with a $60 gift card!
Read the ads and do online research of all the stores before you decide where to go.
2. Download the stores' map on your phone or app.
Most stores release a map for Black Friday a week or two ahead of time to show where the deals are going to be. They will usually be color or number coded by the items that are on sale. This means 99 times out of 100 the sale item will not be in its proper department.
3. Many of the Black Friday Deals will be available online too. Some as soon as 10 PM on 11/21.
Walmart has announced that their deals will start at 10 pm online on 11/21. This will possibly be a bigger win as there will be more stock available online than the physical store. Plus you don't have to worry about impromptu Hardcore Wrestling Matches in the aisles.
4. Amazon may be your best bet.
Amazon's Black Friday week Sale starts on 11/16. But Amazon has some advantages. Amazon is offering free shipping on all orders for the holiday season. Whereas Walmart only offers it on orders over $35 or free store pickup.
5. If you're looking at Toys for a child this year, you're in luck.
After the closure of Toys R Us this past Summer many retailers are fighting for toy dominance. Kroger, Party City, JCPenney and others who do not sell toys usually will sell them this Holiday Season. Walmart, Amazon, Target, Sams Club, and Costco will also be stores to watch.
My advice is to do all your shopping online if possible. You can still get the same deals, but with less drama. If you do go out though, remember to not put all your eggs in one basket.