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Three Rules for Black Friday

by Travis Harvey | November 24, 2009November 24, 2009 1:37 pm PDT

There’s only one thing better than eating more food than your stomach can hold. Apparently, it’s risking your life to save a few bucks. Every year, millions of Americans brave the never-ending lines in freezing cold temperatures for the biggest sale of the year. It’s as American as apple pie, and it’s called Black Friday. If you’re planning on hitting the stores this Friday, we’ve got three things to keep in mind.

crazytyraPeople be crazy.

In economics, you quickly learn the correlation between supply and demand. As demand rises, supply falls. However, when you introduce a third factor, crazy people, into the equation all becomes unknown. Sure, everyone loves the feeling of snagging a great deal. But seeing hundreds of dollars shaved off that normally high-priced flat screen will drive people to do things you wouldn’t believe. If you’re not careful, people will take advantage of you. They’ll push ahead, steal from a stranded cart, or even fight you for your claim. Remember, no amount of money is worth your life.

Store employees hate you.

Sorry, but the truth hurts. If you’ve worked a Black Friday in retail, you know it’s true. There’s nothing worse than having to get up in the middle of the night and head to work. You’re tired, you ate too much, you’re just not in the mood. To top it off, you’ve got hundreds of inconsiderate customers already waiting outside to literally run in the store to buy anything they can get their hands on. Inevitably, something will go wrong for each employee. A deal won’t ring up correctly or a register will break and customer frustration won’t go unheard. If you do anything this Black Friday, be kind to the employees. Know that much of what goes awry isn’t their fault. Who knows, they might just hate you a little less.

Have a game plan.

A vast majority of stores have already had their ads released or leak. If you haven’t started searching for the best deals, you better get crackin’. You can find a huge database of Black Friday ads at any number of sites (try DealNews). Some deals will sell out within seconds of a store’s opening, so prioritizing which deals are must-haves is essential. Note what time those stores open so you can already be in line, miserable, and waiting. Find a friend that is willing to cooperate, organize your deals, and create a play-by-play game plan to collect all your Pokemon deals.

We want to know what deals you’re going to be freezing your little butt off for. Let us know so we can be sure to arrive before you. Are you sitting this Black Friday out? Have any Black Friday horror stories? Share your wisdom in the comments.


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