Shop smart on Black Friday

Black FridayWhile Black Friday has traditionally been a U.S. event, Canadian retailers have been trying to jump in on the action to keep Canadian shoppers (and their retail dollars) at home.

You don’t have to cross the border to score some sweet deals, but be aware: Black Friday can mean super deals, but could also spell disaster for your budget if you don’t plan ahead. Can you say impulse shopping?

Get more with less

You can really leverage a lot of the sales and specials offered on Black Friday to get a jump on holiday shopping as well as get some more mileage from your dollars.

You need to keep this as the focus for the task at hand, because it is so easy to get lured into the land of impulse shopping. When that little voice inside you says, “I can’t afford not to buy this!” I assure you- yes you can!

Don’t buy for yourself

Again, the goal here is for holiday shopping for others. If you’ve not budgeted for pair of boots, even if they are super cute and 2-for-1, you’ve not budgeted for a pair of boots.

Your budget will thank you the day after, even if your inner fashionista does not.

Plan, plan, plan

Get out those flyers now and cruise for online deals. Make your list and try to match item to gift recipient, and then plan your route.

Things like parking and waiting in line will take longer than they might on a regular day- so plan around these items too.

Bring a snack

Ok- so I rarely go anywhere without a snack (although it is usually in anticipation of hungry kids) but shopping is hard work, especially when you are battling crowds. You will be hungry and thirsty.

Keep a little something in your purse and a bottle of water to avoid spending unnecessary money at the food court.

Leave plastic at home

Once you have your list and your plan in place, take out the money that you are going to spend in cash. Leave the plastic at home. Once the money is gone, it’s gone.

You can come home with a full car and a clean credit conscience.