Sanity-saving tips for shopping Black Friday

Katie Reseburg

Black Friday can certainly be stressful if you're not sure if you're getting a good deal or not.

Black Friday can be serious, leading to major stress, rushing around, anxiety over snagging the best deals - not to mention avoiding overly eager, pushy shoppers vying for the same doorbuster deals. To help ease any tension and navigate the sales without feeling like you missed out, we have several sanity-saving strategies that have proven useful if you're planning on shopping on Black Friday and/or through the weekend leading up to another huge sale, Cyber Monday. Follow these tips and you might even enjoy yourself (and hopefully get all your shopping done).

1. Shop online

Why even leave your warm, quiet home to venture out into the masses of people, traffic, and tired clerks? Almost all major retailers offer the same deals online now, with an option for fast, often free, shipping to your home, or free pickup in store within a few days of placing your order (hint: Go Saturday morning before all the people who did wear themselves out going to in-store sales the day before are up and moving).

2. Start shopping the night before

While it's called Black "Friday", the truth is, a lot of sales start the night before, usually around 9 p.m. So if you can be a night owl, you'll save a lot of early bird stress (and snap up hot buys before they run out).

3. Make a wish list (and stick to it)

Most e-commerce giants you're likely to find the best sales on (Amazon, Walmart, Target, etc.) have a list feature, where you can save all the products you want to buy. Just go there, add things to your cart, and you're done. You can usually see if it went on sale and even how much the original price dropped, so make your list ASAP. Sure, there are a lot of other great deals, but we recommend sticking to your list, at least for your first round. You can always return for a second round of shopping after the crucial purchases are made.

4. Shop in order of priority

In line with the above, don't get distracted by all the promoted deals and suggestions. Zero in on your highest-priority items. You'll have time to get in on other sales later if you even need to keep shopping.

5. Nourish your body and mind

Do not shop when you're feeling sick, overly tired, or hangry (hunger-induced anger). Drink plenty of water, eat healthy food to keep your mind and body balanced, and take breaks to just rest and reflect as needed. Listen to your favorite music (or put on the TV) and enjoy the experience. It's supposed to be fun!

6. Shop with friends

Take your favorite shopping buddies along for the camaraderie, start a group text to share deals you are finding, or let your pet give you emotional support. Friends are the best stress relievers!

7. Realize you still have plenty of time and opportunity to shop

You can't possibly get in on every single great deal, and chances are something you want either won't be marked down enough to tempt you into buying it, or it'll go out of stock. Relax - you still have at least a couple weeks. Sales will continue and, when all is said and done, the best gifts aren't bought in stores. If it's too stressful, save the shopping for another day. Your loved ones will understand.


Katie Reseburg is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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