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Friday, November 28, 2008

I survived Black Friday Midnight Madness

Hope everyone had a very Happy Thanksgiving Holiday! Also hope that you survived the Black Friday Madness, if you dared to explore, like I did. As I see it, what better way to burn off some calories after Thanksgiving dinner, than to go shopping? For the 4th year in a row, I dared the Black Friday Midnight Madness and again went home a winner. Extremely tired, but at least a winner! Heck... while everyone else is hustling around shopping for the next 25+ days, I'll be enjoying the decorating, present wrapping, & holiday parties. How did I survive you ask? Here's my story & helpful tips to surviving Black Friday midnight madness.
  1. Started off with a great Thanksgiving meal… of course!
  2. I had a power nap between lunch & dinner as well as during the one hour drive home.
  3. I dressed comfortably for the occasion. Comfy tennis shoes & sweats.
  4. I dared the event with a buddy. A mom like me targeting the exact same store(s).
  5. We planned to arrive at the Great Mall within an hour of opening (which was midnight).
  6. We targeted no more than 2 stores in the mall - Gymboree & Children's Place. Targeting the 2 stores which we needed to purchase the most type of items from maximized our time & savings to take advantage of the doorbuster specials (such as additional 20-30% off entire purchase before 5AM).
  7. While at the first store we used the buddy system. One of us stood in the check-out line, which already wrapped around along the edge of the store walls. While one of us shopped. About half-way we switched. This gave us enough time (at least an hour each) to gather all the items we wanted to buy off of our list. 2+ hours later, at the end of store one I had finished about 70% of my holiday gift shopping. Yeah!
  8. We then ran back to the car to drop off our shopping bags, so that we would be hands free for store two.
  9. While at the second store we used the buddy system again, but this time there were three of us since we ran into my girlfriend's cousin (also a mom). So we took advantage of taking turns standing in the check-out line. This worked out great since by the time we got to the second store, the check-out line was even longer than at the last store. Another 2+ hours later, at the end of store two I had complete about 90-95% of my holiday shopping. Double Yeah!
  10. By about 6am we were done. And while we left the parking lot, others were barely arriving to the mall.
I admit I was exhausted, but the deals were definitely well worth this one time 4-6 hour shopping spree (without kids in tow) vs. trying to get my shopping done hours at a time after work or during the weekends for the next 25+ days. Would I do it again next year… absolutely!