Black Friday text. Torn red paper with copy space for text.
Black Friday text. Torn red paper with copy space for text.

Why Black Friday Deals Won't Save You Money

Jasmyne Jeffery November 22, 2022

It used to be a day, then spread to a weekend and now it takes up a whole weekend. Many people use the opportunity to do their Christmas shopping, thinking they’re saving pennies. However, often Black Friday deals will cost you more.

Black Friday has risen in popularity massively over the last decade. People flock to the shops or even queue outside before they open to nab the best deals. The hunt has even infected the online market, with many adding to their wishlist weeks before the big day in hopes of a cheaper price.

Unfortunately, often the deals are traps that aren’t completely truthful. Remember, these days aren’t to save you money, but to increase the retailers’ profits. Everybody loves a deal, but no one more than a CEO who knows thousands of people will fall for a deceitful price.

Black Friday Deals Aren’t Worth It

Last year, Which? found that 98 per cent of BF deals were the same price or cheaper at other times of the year.

One example found was a chimney cooker hood that was £239 on Black Friday. The retailer had promoted that the item had a saving of £30. However, it had been the same price since November 9 and had even gone down to £160 in August.

Another instance was a fridge that was reduced by £20 the week after BF and stayed that price until the following February.

Often, shops entice customers with a big red ‘WAS’ sign to make customers think that they’re saving the money that is advertised. People think that that was its normal price and that deal is for Black Friday alone. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. Retailers can inflate their prices for a very small about of time before the big day, and then reduce it on Black Friday to claim that it was £100 more expensive.

Photo by Ashkan Forouzani on Unsplash

Amazon displays every price reduction as reduced or on offer, even if it is only by as little as a penny.

Whenever you see a Black Friday deal, always second guess it.

All of this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy anything on Black Friday, but it does mean you shouldn’t take prices at face value. It also means that you shouldn’t let temptation rule. Remember, you haven’t saved any money at all if you hadn’t planned on buying the item when it was full price.

Tips For Black Friday Purchases

Tip 1: Compare as you go. Whether this is in the shops or online, compare the price of the item you’re looking at to other retailers. Not only may you find it cheaper, but you might also find that the ‘special offer’ offered by one, is just the standard price across the board.

Tip 2: Read the small print. Price reduction/sale rules can be a bit vague, particularly when the explanation is buried deep within the terms and conditions. Sometimes retailers do clearly explain that their reduced offers are compared to one-time-only prices. Others like to hide it so the customer is blissfully unaware. Although doing research and reading the small print can be a bit tedious, it’s well worth it if you discover you’re being deceived and the offer isn’t what it seems.

Tip 3: Think About It For An Hour. With Black Friday there is a perception that if you don’t buy something immediately then it will sell out and you would have missed out. If you don’t buy it on impulse, then you don’t get it at all. Retailers prepare for BF months in advance so typically have a good stock of things. Even if they don’t, you can normally ask for things to be put aside for an hour or even find something very similar elsewhere. You’ll only regret buying things immediately if you haven’t thought it through. Take a breather, grab a cuppa and consider if you actually need it and if you are actually getting a good deal. If after a moment of consideration you still think it’s a good idea, then great! However, you may find that you just got a little swept up in it all.

Not All Bad

Not all Black Friday deals are out to get you and some are definitely saving you some serious cash. If you do your research, restrain yourself and even have an agenda, you can enjoy the shopping knowing you’ve not gone too far.

The key is not to let temptation win. Either set yourself a strict budget, list, or a number of purchases and you’ll be absolutely fine. Just don’t fall for any of the retailer jargon made to empty your wallets.

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Hello! My name is Jasmyne and I’m a soon-to-be graduate of English and Creative Writing at the University of South Wales. Originally from North Devon, I now love living in Cardiff. I’m really into my movement; an advocate for joyful movement. I spend my free time either reading, at the Wales Millennium Centre, or running around the city.