7 Tips to Maintain Your Sanity On Black Friday

Keep Your Cool and Score Some Deals

Black Friday is the most famous—er, some would say most infamous—shopping day of the year. You can score amazing deals on everything from clothing to toys to electronics and yet you can also lose your mind amid the stampeding crowds competing for the same savings. To make it through with your sanity (and dignity) intact, follow these tips.

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1. Shop Online Instead
Instead of battling the crowds, put your feet up, make yourself a cup of tea and shop from the comfort of your own home. To get the best deals, keep these dates in mind: November 28 is Cyber Monday when a number of online retailers lower their prices, December 16 is Free Shipping Day, when many online stores waive their shipping fees and minimums.

2. Make a Detailed List (and Stick to It) 
If you have to venture into brick and mortar stores, take a list with you so you know exactly what you need to buy. This way, you won’t just wander around feeling overwhelmed by the onslaught of deals, and the people rushing to take advantage of them. List every item you’d like to purchase and be vigilant about sticking to it. Don’t fall for items you don’t need just because the price is low.

3. Don’t Be Overly Ambitious
Instead of trying to hit all the major stores, choose two or three that have everything you need and leave it at that. You don’t need to spend the day driving all over town. Also, check online first to see if you can find the same deal or something similar.

4. Pack Snacks
There’s nothing worse than shopping, in large crowds, on an empty stomach. Make sure to have an energy bar and piece of fruit in your purse and pack some water, too. That way, you’re satiated and hydrated throughout the experience.

5. Get There Early
While you likely don’t need to wait in line at 1am like the hardcore Black Friday shoppers do, you should try to get to the stores somewhat early to make the experience worth it. If you’re going to make the effort to brave the hoards of people, you want to make sure you at least score some deals. Otherwise, you’ll come away feeling defeated and like you’ve wasted your time.

6. Remember to Breathe
Large crowds can be daunting, and on Black Friday when people are rushing around, grabbing stuff and throwing elbows to get to the deals, you can easily get swept up in the shopping fever. When you feel like glaring at someone for taking the last sweater in your size or feel the need to say some choice words after getting your foot stepped on, again, take a moment to take a deep breath instead. Find a quiet corner of the store, or go outside, and realize that no amazing deal is worth compromising your peace of mind.

7. Read the Return Policies
It can be tempting to grab a bunch of on-sale items and veer from your trusty list because you think you’re getting a good deal. But, in taking advantage of those low, low prices, you can end up with stuff you don’t need. Be sure that you know the return policies on every item you decide to purchase (especially those clearance deals) so you don’t get stuck with anything you don’t want.

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