Is Black Friday Still Relevant?

We’re all familiar with it’s history.  Up before (and I mean way before) the butt crack of dawn to wait in line at one of the countless stores offering “doorbuster deals.”  Throngs of people fighting and stampeding just to get one of a limited supply of popular, heavily discounted item.  But is going to such lengths really worth it?  I am on the side that says no.

First, given the economic situation, my understanding is that retailers are very aggressive this year in terms of pricing such that “Pre-Black Friday” deals have begun to pop up.  Further, for those of you that don’t know, there is a myriad of sources on the internet, such as Slickdeals, BensBargains, and Spoofee that provide information on deals on a daily basis throughout the year.  And for those of you willing, these sites also have forums where you can troll for reader tips on how to get the best deals on almost any product.

Second, is the time value.  My wife, bless her heart, woke up at 3:00 a.m. to begin her Black Friday Shopping.  As for me, I find that to be precious time that could used to, for example, spend time with family, work on a creative hobby, or just to recharge from or for a busy work week.  Personally, I think my time is worth at least three time as much as the dollars saved from waiting in line five hours during Black Friday.

In the end, I believe shoppers who do their research and know the  resources have opportunities way beyond Black Friday to save money.  I will admit, though, that I am speaking anecdotally and do not have any hard numbers to support my first argument.  And some say that Black Friday madness is a good opportunity to spend time with loved ones and that its chaos can strengthen bonds.  Definitely a good point but as for me, I can’t imagine myself going out there to potentially face the business end of someone’s “Black Friday Rage” or vice versa.  What are your thoughts?  Is there a shopping sage out there that can impart some Holiday shopping wisdom?

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