The Best Time For Black Friday Shopping

Over the past few years, people have begun their Black Friday shopping earlier and earlier. I remember when I was ten years old and my family would get up at 5 a.m. to go to the mall, and I thought that was crazy. Nowadays, some people start their shopping as soon as they finish Thanksgiving dinner. It has progressively gotten earlier as the years have gone by. But why? Is there any real benefit?

A lot of stores have started having their Black Friday deals earlier on the night of Thanksgiving, with some starting as early as 5 p.m., like Target. Some of these stores will open in the evening and stay open until the middle of the night, just to re-open again the next morning. Target, for example, will be open on Thanksgiving from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m., then reopen at 7 a.m. on Black Friday. Other stores, such as Walmart, will open on the evening of Thanksgiving and remain open all night long. 

Because of the stores that stay open all night long, people may fear that if they don’t go shopping after Thanksgiving dinner, then they will miss out on deals and some items will start selling out. For the most part, this is false. At the big chain stores like Target and Walmart, if they sell out of something in the store, there is a good chance they can order the item online for you, and you will get the same deal that is being offered in the store. At smaller local stores, you probably can’t do this, but most of these stores also don’t open on Thanksgiving -- they open early on Black Friday.

There really doesn’t seem to be any benefit to starting your Black Friday shopping on Thanksgiving, other than maybe you don’t have to get up as early. But that’s part of the fun. If I tried to stay out late after having a big Thanksgiving dinner, I’d get tired way too quickly to be able to actually focus on shopping and getting the best deals. 

If you are torn between spending quality time with your family on Thanksgiving and getting the best Black Friday deals, choose the time with your family. The deals will still be there on the actual day of Black Friday -- that’s why they’re called “Black Friday sales” and not “Thanksgiving sales.” Good prices on gifts will always pop up around the holidays, but making memories with your family on Thanksgiving is priceless.


Edited by Sydney Keener