By Orla Connolly
In Ireland, St. Stephen’s Day is known to kick off the season of sales. Black Friday stems from a similar idea. An American tradition, Black Friday witnesses the beginning of a near global discount extravaganza that makes our St. Stephen’s Day sales look, well, adorable! The event has slowly made its way to Ireland and has grown in popularity in recent years.
Research released by Webloyalty reveals Irish consumers are expected to to spend €109 million this year on Black Friday. That’s a huge leap of 31% from last year’s sales. With this in mind more and more Irish stores are adopting this American custom. Those included in this year’s festivities are Harvey Norman, Littlewoods Ireland, Arnotts, New Look, Currys PC World and even Tesco are joining in the fun. If Santa Claus is worried about the kids, fret not, both Smyths and the Disney Store are now Black Friday members.
This year, Black Friday will be held on November 27th and will begin when stores open for business that day, yet some will opt to open at earlier times especially for the sale. Numerous businesses, especially online retailers, have been known to offer flash deals in the weeks running up to Black Friday so keep a constant eye on your favourite retailers and you might snap up a bargain.
Some retailers have expanded Black Friday beyond a single day event. Argos has launched a promotion which advertises that “It’s Black Friday every weekend.” This deal means that every Friday in November will see a whole new set of extreme discounts for Argos shoppers. One of last Friday’s offers was a HP 15-ac042na Intel Pentium 15.6 Inch 8GB 2TB Laptop reduced from €649.99 to €424.99. But be careful, these Friday offers expire on the following Tuesday.
Many shopper sceptics ask if the hustle and hassle of Black Friday is really worth it? If you can’t stand the crowds that Black Friday will inevitably attract, don’t forget that you can still take advantage of these deals from the comfort of your own home. Many online retailers like Amazon, eBay and Very.co.uk participate in an online version of Black Friday.
This little fact will be the headache of every employer come November 27th as complaints have already been issued regarding staff members shopping online for bargains instead of working. And remember, last year’s event caused many websites to crash due to over taxation of their server. This year predicts even more activity so hopefully you checkout before the system does!
Like Argos, Amazon has launched a selection of their deals early in the run up to Black Friday. They’ve reduced the price of 7,000 items and apparently the reduction will continue for two days following Black Friday.
One final tip to ensure you get the most for your money is be prepared. Black Friday is far less frantic when you know what you’re looking for and where you’re going. Don’t forget to load your phone with apps from your favourite stores in the days beforehand and keep updated with sales alerts and Black Friday offers.