How Black Friday is Beating COVID-19

Each year after the turkey has been carved and the food coma wears off, millions of Americans lace up their tennis shoes and hit the mall in search of deals to kick off the Christmas season. Black Friday crowds and the expected aggression that comes with them has become a trademark of the holiday. Whether you plan to cybershop or brave the long lines, here’s a guide to the best tips, tricks, and deals for 2020.

First, let’s look at how COVID-19 will change this year’s shopping patterns. Many of the major chain stores will be closed on Thanksgiving Day, including Target, Best Buy, Kohl’s, Old Navy, Walmart, Macy’s, JCPenney, and many more to limit crowds. Several stores haven’t announced their Black Friday hours yet, and those that have are implementing temperature checks, mandatory mask-wearing, and capacity limitations to protect their customers and employees from the COVID-19 virus. To further dilute the Black Friday crowds, many stores have extended their Black Friday deals over several days in November and December and have made deals available online as well, sometimes even before they are available in stores. Most retail locations are encouraging curbside pickup or delivery as opposed to coming inside.

Walmart will roll out 3 main Black Friday events as part of their Deals for Days campaign. Event 1 started November 4, with more deals being added on November 7 in stores. The second event features online deals starting November 11, with more deals added on November 14. The last deal is your traditional Black Friday event. It will start online on Wednesday, November 25 at 7 p.m. with more deals added at midnight on Black Friday online and at 5 a.m. in stores.

Target is promoting Black Friday deals throughout all of November and December with new deals coming out each week. Macy’s sales will run November 24-28, but sneak peek deals are available for preview to allow shoppers to plan ahead. Kohl’s Black Friday deals are already available online and in store throughout November, offering fast and free curbside pickup.

Even local businesses are adapting to the demand for online shopping for customers who may feel uncomfortable with Black Friday crowds. Small businesses have been the biggest economic victims of the pandemic, making support for small businesses more important than ever. Many small businesses participate in Shop Small Saturday deals. Small Louisville retailers like Work the Metal and Six Sisters Boutique will have a new online presence this holiday season. Six Sisters Boutique will include a delivery option as well, with online and in-person deals lasting from Black Friday through Cyber Monday. Work the Metal is hosting private shopping events by appointment and featuring many items online available for curbside pickup or delivery. Small businesses in NuLu and other parts of the city are adapting for a safe and successful shopping season.

Whether you’re shopping big or small, online or in person, be sure to stay safe and healthy this holiday season.