In a perfect world, the latest and most technologically advanced high definition televisions, laptops, smart phones, and tablets would all be heavily discounted on Black Friday. While this actually may appear to be true for some of those products, looks can certainly be deceiving. Many times stores will offer, “can’t miss sales” at prices that generally aren’t much different than what you can find the rest of the year. That is not to say that you will not find a deal on an iPad or a Macbook Pro. You are just going to have to look a little harder and hope for a little bit of luck as quantities will be limited. As a general rule, here are some of the best items to focus your efforts on this Black Friday as well as what to avoid or limit.
The Best Items
While you probably are not going to find the latest HDTV from Sony for sale at 50% off, you can still find a wide variety of electronics from premium brands at great prices. Some of these items include televisions, laptops, tablets, digital cameras and more. Even though you won’t be buying the latest model, a little bit of research will show you that not many differences exist between the model on sale and the one that is selling for hundreds of dollars more. Many premium laptops with impressive specs are sold at prices up to 45% off and provide the same if not better performance than those from better-known companies. Popular electronic brands include Sony, Toshiba, Panasonic, Asus, Microsoft, LG, Samsung, HP, and occasionally even Apple. Lesser-known brands should not be ignored as you can still get a high quality electronic at a rock bottom price.
Video Game Console Bundles and Games
2013 is looking to be a huge year for dedicated gamers as well as the casual player. With the release of the Sony Playstation 4 and the Xbox One, video game fanatics everywhere are rejoicing. The Nintendo Wii U is also back for this season and with better deals than last year. Past experience has shown us that stand-alone consoles outside of a bundle will not be discounted. An example of a bundle would include the console, an extra controller, a few games, and possibly a trial for Xbox live premium. Doing the math, you can sometimes save as much as 45% off when you add up each item on an individual basis.
Unlike consoles, you can find individual games on sale. While not always the newest games, some titles are marked down by over 50%! Top video game stores include Gamestop, Amazon, and Best Buy
DVDs and Blue Rays
If you are a movie buff, we have great news for you. Black Friday is any movie lover’s paradise as both new and old DVDs and Blue Ray discs are offered at arguably the lowest prices that you will see them offered for all year. This means that you can pick up a new movie such as The Avengers along with a classic such as Casablanca. You can even find box sets and collections such as The Godfather, Rocky, Batman, and others.
The sales are just as good for television series. As higher quality shows are now being produced from premium networks such as HBO, Showtime, and AMC, you can now enjoy full series with the same acting and production quality that only feature length films offered in the past. So sit down with Walter White and Dexter this Black Friday, pop in your favorite series, and lose a week while watching every season straight through (our favorite method of enjoying a series).
As the kitchen is the heart of most homes, it makes sense to upgrade and renovate it to your liking. Many kitchen appliances and utensil sets also make good holiday gifts. Stores understand this need and kitchen appliances are some of the best items to get on Black Friday. Blenders, coffee makers, premium knife sets, juicers, and sauté pans, are a few of the many options available to make your kitchen that gourmet paradise that you have always dreamed.
We have found that stores such as Ikea, office supply stores, and large department stores offer some noteworthy sales on both home and office furniture every single Black Friday. This allows you to upgrade your living room, office, basement, bedroom, and even outside of your house with premium furniture at bargain prices. Contrary to popular belief, our research is showing that November may actually be the absolute best month to buy furniture, so do not wait until January or February if you want to get the deepest discount on your new couch, desk, or chair.
Home Improvement Products
If you are a homeowner, then you can attest to the fact that there is always something that can be upgraded or fixed. Home Depot, Lowes, Harbor Freight, and Ace are among the leading home improvement stores and they compete every single year to outdo each other on Black Friday. This is good news for you as it lets you buy your tools, appliances, bathroom décor, power equipment, paint, and more at great prices. So gear up for your next project or schedule one of their contractors and treat yourself this holiday season.
Travel and Vacation Packages
While not a physical item, travel packages are very much a part of modern Black Friday shopping. Buying a vacation package is generally an online only thing and sales can be found at industry leading sites such as Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, and more. Even though these sites have discounted packages and incentives all year, we have found that they sweeten their deals during Thanksgiving and Black Friday weekend. Disney World, Vegas, Mexico, and Europe are some of the many popular destinations that our users report finding deals for.
The Jury is Still Out
In the past, toys would have topped our list of the worst items to buy on Black Friday. The reason being is that the price of toys seemed to decrease significantly as Christmas drew closer in order for stores to ensure that they sold out of their inventory. As Black Friday and Cyber Monday are morphing together into a two-week period of deals, it seems that toy discounts are coming earlier and earlier every year. For this reason, we recommend keeping an eye out on toys from stores such as Toys R Us, Amazon, Walmart, and Target as you may really find some great deals.
The Worst Items
Luxury and Premium Electronics
Unfortunately, Black Friday is probably not the best day for you to buy an iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy and expect to receive a discount. Discounts for top of the line items from luxury brands just do not happen very often. We are not saying it never happens, but we urge you to do your homework and educate yourself on middle tier brands. Many times the only difference between middle tier and upper tier products is the logo and packaging. One company that does discount what can be referred to as luxury brand items is Amazon. We have seen discounts on their high quality eReader known as the Kindle the past few years.
Jewelry and Watches
Contrary to popular belief, deals on jewelry are not very good during Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or even any time up until Valentine’s Day. As these are the peak times of the year that men buy jewelry, there is really not much incentive for stores to offer their best discounts as guys are going to buy it anyway (If they want to keep their wife happy that is). We recommend doing your jewelry shopping in the off season as the demand is not as high and jewelers are much more likely to offer better and more cost effective prices.
As most people are just beginning to decorate their homes for Christmas around Thanksgiving, they are probably looking for new decorations. This create a huge demand which gives stores no incentive to lower their prices and offer sales as everyone is going to buy their decorations regardless. Do not be fooled by stores claiming discounts on anything Christmas related as the best time to get these items is sometime after Christmas or in the summer. For this reason, we recommend holding off on buying that giant Santa Claus or Frosty the Snowman for your lawn until later in the year.
Winter Apparel and Clothing
You would think that deals on “in season” clothing would be the best because of the large inventory and competition, but it is completely the opposite. The top time of the year to buy clothing for the cold season is actually right after winter or in the summer. We recommend waiting until late February or early March when stores are trying to get rid of their excess winter clothing in order to make room for spring and summer wear. So ignore all of the minimal discounts on hoodies, long sleeved shirts, jackets, and scarves and search for spring and summer wear such as polos, sandals, bathing suits, and shorts.
Originally published here. For more info, please visit BestBlackFriday.com
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