Black Friday. For some, it’s a holiday to look forward to all on its own. For others, it’s a nightmare come true. Whether you spend Black Friday scouring the deals in stores, online, or not at all, hopefully we can help. Not only is Black Friday an important time for a shopping game plan, but it’s also an important time to focus on financial safety. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
The Best Things to Buy on Black Friday
Not everything has its best price on this big shopping day. Some things that are almost always at their best prices include:
- Electronics - computers, printers, gaming systems, games & DVDs
- Small appliances - slow cookers, blenders, instant pots
- Kitchen supplies - pots and pans, knives, dinnerware
- Travel packages
The Worst Things to Buy on Black Friday
While these items may seem like a steal, it’s more likely that they will have a better price some other time of the year:
- Clothing – this is typically cheaper in January
- Christmas decorations – after Christmas sales are much better for these
- Latest smartphones – the best deal for a brand-new smartphone is immediately after a new model is released
- Jewelry – January brings Valentine’s Day discounts
- Toys – this is tricky because it can depend on the specific toy, but the best sales tend to happen right before Christmas
Money Saving Tips
- Budget - the most important part of Black Friday is creating and sticking with a budget.
- Carry cash – if you’re often tempted by sales, create a budget and bring only that amount in cash.
- Price check with Amazon – If you’ve already searched for the best deals in your area, chances are Amazon is the only place that may be cheaper. Download the Amazon shopping app and scan each item’s barcode to see if it’s cheaper on the site.
- 40% rule – when it comes to clothing and accessories, a good way to judge the sale is whether or not it’s 40% off or more. If not, pass it up.
- $50 rule – A good rule of thumb for Black Friday shopping is that if the deal won’t save you at least $50, don’t go. You may have to spend a little more on the item at a later date, but it will save you time, hassle, money, and stress.
- Discounted gift cards – Plan ahead and purchase discounted gift cards from sites like Raise so you save even more.
Stay Safe. Stay Sane.
Tis the season… for fraud. Fraudsters know Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year. They know there are plenty of targets and take advantage. Here are some easy steps to take in an effort to prevent fraud from ruining your holidays.
- Sign up for eAlerts. If you receive a text every time your card is swiped, you can catch fraud instantly.
- If you do a lot of online shopping, be sure your device is protected with antivirus, anti-spyware, and a firewall.
- Be sure to completely close out of shopping sites or turn off your computer when done.
- Review your accounts daily to ensure there are no discrepancies.
- Add your card’s fraud department’s number to your cell phone in case they suspect a legitimate purchase is fraudulent. If the number is saved, you are more likely to answer and prevent unnecessary precautions. DECU’s fraud number is 888-918-7313.
- If you plan to donate to charities this holiday season, be sure to donate to a trusted organization or do a little extra research beforehand.
- Be cautious of links found in promotional emails. Always double check that the email address looks legitimate. It is also safer to type the URL into the search bar instead of clicking the link provided – just in case!
Overall, just be careful out there! Whether you’re caught in an angry mob searching for the best deal or shopping online, we want you to stay safe.