I had originally planned to do this on Friday, but then I realized there would be no point by then. First, Happy Thanksgiving! Second, be ready for Friday.
I know it is not as common for teenagers to be cruising malls on “Black Friday”, but there are some young people who will be there because that’s what their parents do, and that’s what their granparents did, and so on. Bravo! Congrats on having the courage!
Most ‘experts’ are saying to avoid malls, and shopping all together if you can, using the web for purchases instead. Now, I’m sure that they know what they like, and I’m sure they don’t want to be in a mall on the Friday after Thanksgiving, but this is horrible advice to give a young person, especially one who is trying to control their finances.
I strongly suggest you go to a mall on Friday, especially if you have some winter holiday shopping to finish (start!). From a savings and budgeting vantage, this could well be the best advice ever. A couple of things happen in malls around Thanksgiving. They get crowded, and they start playing Christmas music excessively! To the shopper, these are nothing more than strong incentives for you to get in and out quickly. The advantage over online is that it is way too easy to sit in front of a computer all day, but it is extremely hard to shop in a mall all day around holiday time. So go to the mall on Friday, knock out some shopping, grab a couple of good sales, and enjoy this festive time of year. But keep the following in mind.
- Have a plan! Try to have a list of who you are shopping for and what you are looking for.
- Don’t carry cash unless there is no choice! There are too many bad people out there who would love to take a little extra cash of your hands for you.
- DO carry your debit card! There is added protection from both Visa and Mastercard, and these transactions are usually quick to process.
- DO carry your account register! Make sure you are logging your purchases.
- Don’t go hungry! If you do, you will squander a huge chunk of salary on snacks and other food court delecasies.
- If you’re not a ‘holiday person’, don’t worry! This holiday is only one day, not like other holidays. After Thursday, it’s over!!