Tips for making the most of Black Friday

Black Friday and Cyber Monday can be great days for picking up a bargain. We look at how to get the best Black Friday deals.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday can be great days for picking up a bargain. We look at how to get the best Black Friday deals.

Anelda Knoesen
From the Money team
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Posted 8 NOVEMBER 2019

1. Know what you want

It’s easy to be dazzled by the array of Black Friday deals. But buying something you don’t really want or need, just because it’s cheap, is not a bargain. Decide what you want to go after and make a shopping list.

2. Don’t spend more than you can afford

You don’t want to be left with a gaping hole in your bank account once the Black Friday buzz has worn off. Draw up your Black Friday budget and stick to it – no matter how tempting the deals are.

3. Read the reviews

It pays to know what you’re buying and where you’re buying it from. Read reviews on reputable sites of the products you’re thinking of buying and the retailers you’re considering buying from.

4. Stay informed

If you’re not already doing it, start following your favourite retailers on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Bookmark their sites, download their apps and sign up for their emails. That way, you’ll be the first to know about Black Friday deals and offers.

5. Get signed up

The last thing you want is to negotiate a long account sign-up when you’re at the online checkout on Black Friday. Open accounts with all the retailers you think you want to shop with ahead of time, and check your billing and delivery details are correct on accounts you already have.

6. Start looking early

Black Friday is on 29 November in 2019 – but many retailers will be offering deals well in advance. If you haven’t started looking a week or two before, you may well miss out. Black Friday also lasts longer than a day, so look out for at least a long weekend of bargains with possible price reductions after Black Friday itself.

7. Identify the real bargains

Knowing the original prices of items will help you see if you’re really getting a bargain. Start tracking prices of the items you want ahead of the sales starting. You could also try price tracking sites like Camelcamelcamel, which shows the price history of Amazon items. 

8. Time it right

There have been problems in the past with sites slowing down under the weight of Black Friday traffic, so try to pick a time that’s not so likely to be busy. If you’re hitting the bricks and mortar shops, early tends to be better. Check the opening times of stores and plan your route.

9. Compare prices

Don’t grab the first bargain you see. Search online to see if someone is offering a better price elsewhere. Use the Google shopping channel or a retail price comparison site.

10. Negotiate your own price

Haggling can pay. And if you’re shopping online, you can do it through live chat. Always have a price in mind and be prepared to walk away if you can’t get what you want.

11. Be on guard against scams

Fraudsters come out to play on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, so be vigilant. Make sure your computer’s virus protection software is up to date, don’t click on dodgy offers on social media and watch out for email scams. Wherever you’re shopping, remember, if an offer seems to good to be true – it probably is.

12. Remember Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday, which is 2 December in 2019, can be great for getting a bargain, particularly white goods and fashion. You might also find retailers cut their prices further on Cyber Monday.

13. Think about using your credit card

One of the advantages of using your credit card for your Black Friday shopping is that, if you buy something that costs more than £100 and less than £30,000, you can be covered by the Consumer Credit Act if something goes wrong – you get it home and it’s damaged, for example. You can also take advantage of credit cards with 0% purchase interest periods. But make sure you can pay back the full amount you owe before the interest-free period ends.

14. Make sure your bargains are protected

If you’ve bought an expensive item, check your home contents insurance to see if it’s covered by your single item limit – the maximum amount you can claim for any one item. If it’s worth more than the limit, you’ll need to tell your insurance provider so they can list that item individually on your policy and insure it to its full value.

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