1. Set your spend limit
Before you start it’s best to look at what you can afford and set a budget.
While there are some great bargains to be had on Black Friday it’s never worth spending more than you can afford, especially if it costs you money in interest or worse leaves you in financial difficulty.
Write a list of what you’re looking to buy with rough price estimates to see how it measures up to your budget. If it’s way over your spending limit, drop what you can’t afford.
2. Create a wish list
Plan your purchases. Jot down your wish list and the sites you plan to visit in priority order. This can help stop you from getting distracted or tempted by stuff you don’t need and missing the real deals.
If you have time to do a reconnaissance shop you may also want to make a note of actual prices, so you know you’re genuinely getting a bargain on the day.
If you’re hoping to do some early Christmas shopping, make a list of who you need to buy gifts for and set aside an amount you can afford to spend on each person.
3. Think about how you’ll shop
You may want to stay away from busy shopping centres this year and shop from the comfort and safety of your own home. Other good reasons to consider shopping online are:
- It’s easier to compare prices
- There’s less temptation to buy stuff you don’t need
- You save money on petrol and parking
- You get better refund rights
- You can still buy local; most Irish shops & businesses have websites or Facebook pages.
Spending more time at home means the quality of our online experience is even more important. If you’re unhappy with your connection or are thinking about a TV bundle for Christmas, Black Friday could be the ideal opportunity to find a broadband package bargain.
If you’re planning a major purchase, you could consider applying for a purchase credit card with a 0% introductory rate to help you spread the cost.
4. Get social & be the first to know
The best businesses are the ones who reach out to their customers on social media.
Seek out your favourite shops on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and follow to get the latest info on flash sales and deals for top products.
It’s also worth signing up for email newsletters, because some brands send out discount codes, special offers and the latest sales news just for their subscribers.
5. Use cashback or shopping rewards
If you have a credit card, or debit card with cashback or shopping rewards, then make sure you use it for purchases on the day.
Just remember to pay your balance in full at the end of the month or the amount of interest may outweigh the savings.
Using your credit or debit card may also provide you with additional consumer protection meaning you have a better chance of getting your money back if things go wrong.
6. Shop with stores you trust
If a deal seems too good to be true, there’s normally a hidden catch and you don’t want to be lumbered with a faulty product or a delivery no-show at this time of year.
Fortunately, you are protected by the chargeback scheme if you shop by credit or debit card, but you can save time chasing up missing items or claiming money back by just sticking with who you know and love this Black Friday.
7. Insure your big-ticket items
If you are splashing out on an expensive product, like a new laptop or mobile, then it’s worth sorting out your gadget insurance or mobile insurance as soon as possible so you are covered at home or on the move straight away.
The same advice applies if you decide to grab a holiday bargain. Don’t wait until the last minute, cover your holiday booking with travel insurance as soon as you have paid.
This ensures you’re covered if anything goes wrong like the holiday firm goes bust or you become too unwell to travel.
8. Know your refund rights
Shopping online has lots of advantages, including extra refund rights that you don’t get on the high street.
This means you don’t have to feel stuck with a bunch of ill-fitting clothes and poor quality home furnishings that look nothing like the pics.
Before you start your Black Friday shopping frenzy, read our guide on refund rights and check out the retailer’s refund policy before you click the buy button.
9. Have fun
Once you’ve done all your planning it’s time to make a brew, pour a glass of wine or crack open a beer.
Shopping should be fun and if you set a budget and stick with stores you trust, you can save money, shop without stress and hopefully pick up some great bargains too.
Black Friday FAQs
Do I have the same refund rights on Black Friday?
Yes. If you shop online, you’ll have the same consumer protection on Black Friday as you do any other time of the year.
If you shop in-store, you will be legally covered by the Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Act, but check at the shop counter before you buy because individual stores may have different return policies.
Our refund rights guide can tell you all you need to know about returning goods and getting your money back in Ireland.
Should I buy goods on 0% Finance on Black Friday?
When you are purchasing goods on finance you are borrowing money to pay for the goods you want to buy, but the money borrowed goes straight to the seller or manufacturer to pay for the purchase.
It can be a good option if you are making a major purchase like a sofa suite or car and you can’t afford to pay the full price upfront. However, make sure you can repay the debt within the 0% finance period or you will be saddled with repaying extra at high interest rates.
If you want to take this option, the retailer will need to check your credit history and you’ll need to have a good credit score to prove you’re a reliable borrower. If you want to know more about how to check your credit record read our guide.
What is Cyber Monday?
The term Cyber Monday was coined around 2005 in the US by marketeers to encourage people to shop online. It became the online equivalent to Black Friday and is now a marketing term used by online retailers across the world.
The day always takes place the Monday after Black Friday and sales often take place through the weekend.
The dates for Cyber Monday are:
- 30th November 2020
- 29th November 2021
- 28th November 2022
When is Black Friday?
This year Black Friday will be held on 27th November and Cyber Monday will take place on 30th November 2020. The following years will be:
- 26th November 2021
- 25th November 2022
Why is it called Black Friday?
The last Friday in November was often the day that shops “move into the black”, meaning they began to make a profit and therefore could start shifting old stock at reduced prices.
The concept originated in the US as a popular shopping day, the day after Thanksgiving and found it’s way over the pond in 2010 when Amazon started promoting deals and discounts on that date.
Now many countries around the world hold sales on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.