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Cost Cutters: Surviving Black Friday

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Kansas City, Mo. — So you want to brave the crowds on Black Friday, huh? Whether you’re heading out to your favorite stores, or curl up and shop online, now’s the time to start planning.

Prioritize — You are probably not going to be able to get all the deals you want. Make a list starting with the item(s) you want the most and go from there. Keep in mind that stores don’t always put doorbusters where you think they should go. If you can’t find what you’re looking for quickly, ask for help.

Shop with a friend — I assume you are shopping on Black Friday because you love to get a great deal. Grab a friend or two and turn it into a “thing.” Have one person stand in line while the other shops. That way you don’t waste all of your time standing in line. You can also team up with a group of people and have everyone hit a different store. This will cut down on the amount of time you have to shop and also increase the chance of getting what you want!

Carry the sale ads with you — Some stores will price match. You will likely have to show the lower price in the ad of the competing store. (Most will not price match doorbusters. If you have a question, ask.) Keep in mind you may have to price match at customer service instead of at the register.

Use coupons and other discounts when you can — If you’re going to be fighting the crowds, get the best deal you can! That means using your Target Red Card or coupon from filling prescriptions there to save an extra 5%. Some store credit cards will also offer an extra discount as an incentive.

Don’t even let me see you shopping at Kohl’s without a coupon. They’ve been mailing out free $10 and $5 coupons. Plus 15% off coupons. P.S. — You can use both coupons and stack them on top of the Black Friday prices!!

Other ideas — I’m sure you’ve seen the Walmart adds. Show up within an hour of opening and get the Black Friday price on nearly two dozen items. THIS DOES NOT MEAN YOU CAN WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE TO SHOW UP. This is more like, “hey, there’s a chance I MAY be able to get what I’m after.” Keep in mind that the stores are going to be packed and parking is going to be an issue. Leave early enough that you have time to fight traffic, find a parking spot, AND figure out where you need to go to get the ticket you want.

Shopping online — Guess what? You may not even have to shop on Black Friday to get those great prices. Black Friday is already underway at Kohls.com. Last year Home Depot had sale prices live on Thanksgiving Day, hours before stores ever opened for business.

Coupon codes — If you plan on shopping online, search now for coupon codes that will be valid Friday. If you see a coupon code box when you are checking out, search for a code on Google. Do this now and make a list so you’ll be ready to check out quickly.

Cash back offers — If your credit card offers cash back deals, check them out. If it helps you save money in the long run, use it. Just make sure you pay it off.

Amazon — Click here to read about how you can cash in on Amazon deals.

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