Black Friday shopping tips 2023
To shop or not to shop on Black Friday? That is the question. With these tips, you'll be able to avoid the crowds, get the best deals and treat yourself to some cheap new things. Lucky you.
This year, Black Friday is on 24th November 2023.
Many retailers start their sales early, with some even offering Black November deals throughout the entire month. Make sure you check out the top Black Friday retailers to get a headstart.
Whether this is your first Black Friday, or you're a seasoned professional, this guide will help you shop efficiently. Read on to make the most of the sales.
10 ways to find bargains on Black Friday
Get the best discounts on 24th November with these tips:
Wake up early to get the best deals
The best way to get the biggest discounts on Black Friday is by starting your shopping early.
If you want to avoid the crowds, you can set up your laptop early in the morning and shop online.
The best deals will sell out quickly, so you'll want to be the first in the queue (whether that's online or in-person) to avoid disappointment. While some top retailers will expect long queues outside their stores on Black Friday, this rarely actually happens. You won't be the only one doing their shopping online.
Plan which shops to visit on Black Friday
It's not always easy to predict what will be on offer. But, in order to minimise the temptation of impulse buys, you should have a rough idea of what you want to buy.
Stay focused on which sales to look at. Need new jeans? Stay away from Argos. Looking for gift sets for Christmas? Stick to retailers like Boots or TK Maxx.
There will be lots of bargains on Black Friday. But you're just wasting money if you get tempted to buy something you don't need.
Our content editor, Nele van Hout, uses this strategy before Black Friday:
In the months leading up to Black Friday, I try to hold off buying bigger purchases and make a list instead. That way, I can check if there are any Black Friday deals for these specific items and save a lot of money.
It's also a great way to stay clear of all the shiny deals because you have a goal of what you're looking for.
Find stores that have Black November deals
If one day of huge bargains isn't enough, you'll be glad to know that some shops offer deals throughout the entire month. This is known as Black November.
For other early reductions, keep an eye on our Black Friday discount page.
Be wary of misleading deals
There are plenty of great deals around on Black Friday. But, unfortunately, there are also some which are... not so good.
Perhaps because Black Friday is known for amazing sales, some shops decide to try their luck with some bad ones. They hope that people believe these deals are better than they are.
If you know what kinds of things you want to buy, do some research ahead of Black Friday. Find out how much they usually sell for, so you have a point of comparison. Maybe even pop to the shops a day or two before to check prices. That way, you should recognise any bad deals.
Even if you don't specifically know what you'd like to buy in advance, it's still worth doing some research before making the purchase. If you're looking on Amazon, CamelCamelCamel will show you how the price has changed over time.
This should indicate whether the Black Friday offer is the real deal or just a poor imitation.
Lauren Nash, our digital marketing manager, managed to get an even better deal before Black Friday:
Just because something is on sale on Black Friday, doesn't necessarily mean that's the best price for the item.
In 2022, I managed to save an extra £40 on a vacuum cleaner by buying it two weeks before Black Friday. It was still on a deal on the day, but the discount was much greater a few weeks previous.Amongst all the deals, it's important to consider your carbon footprint. Try only buying things you needed or wanted in advance, rather than something that just takes your fancy on the day.
Research Black Friday offers
There are so many shops with Black Friday deals. Many of them will be offering the same thing. So, how do you know where to find the cheapest items?
Before the sales start, research the stores you're interested in. There may be some hints about what will be on offer.
We have insights and Black Friday deal predictions based on previous years. However, it isn't always possible to know what will be on offer. Before you buy something, have a quick check on other websites to see if you can get the same item for cheaper.
Save more money with your student discount
You may find that some shops will accept student discount on already discounted items. This can save you a lot of money on Black Friday.
Check out what stores offer student discounts. This way, you'll know how to get the most out of the reductions.
If you're shopping in-store, make sure you bring your student card. You should always ask if a store offers a student discount. If you don't ask, you don't get.
Set a shopping budget
You can set an overall spending limit for the day or decide on price ranges to spend on each person. Either way, it's important not to deviate from it.
Black Friday is just one day. Don't get yourself into financial trouble for the sake of a few bargains. Remember that you need to make your money last for the rest of the month.
Have realistic expectations for Black Friday
Shops may be promising some crazy bargains ahead of 24th November. But, that doesn't mean you'll end up with exactly what you've set your heart set on.
If you're looking for Christmas presents, it's highly unlikely you'll find gifts for everyone on your list in just one day. As well as shopping in the Black Friday sales, you can find cheap Christmas presents by checking out these personal gift ideas for under £5.
Consider returning items you no longer want
Hopefully, by following these rules, you'll only buy what you actually need. That said, we understand that the temptation of these sales can sometimes be too much.
If you change your mind about anything you bought on Black Friday, check whether they're eligible for a refund. Remember that some shops won't let you return sale items unless they're faulty (in which case, they have to let you return them by law).
Don't take too long to decide whether you want to keep an item. Most retailers that do refund sale items will only accept returns within 28 days.
It's worth double-checking if you can return something by looking at the store's T&Cs online. You can also find out more about your consumer rights in our guide.
Be polite to shoppers and staff on Black Friday
Planning on braving the shops on Black Friday? Remember that things can get feisty. You may see people squabbling over the last few tellies available at Tesco. Keep a calm head and don't get involved.
Always remember to be polite, even if fellow shoppers are not. Manners cost nothing, and being rude won't get you anywhere.
Likewise, be nice to the poor employees working on Black Friday. If something's out of stock, it's not their fault. It's likely that staff have been working since 6am or earlier. A friendly smile may just make their day.
Ready for the sales? Check out the best Black Friday deals.