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Budgeting

Nov 23, 2021

5 Tips for Saving Money on Black Friday and Cyber Monday

By Claire Grant

Create a budget and a list before you start shopping, and search for deals.

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Black Friday and Cyber Monday, two of the biggest shopping days of the year, are just around the corner. These are the days immediately following Thanksgiving, when consumers typically do the majority of their holiday shopping. 

In 2020, holiday shopping arrived while the Covid-19 pandemic was in full swing, and before the widespread rollout of vaccines. Consumers reportedly spent an average $312 during the four-day stretch from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday.

And because of the pandemic, consumers shopped more online, and over a more extended period of time. Total online sales during the 2020 holiday season increased to $209 billion, a 24% jump year-over-year. Holiday retail sales totaled $789.4 billion, an 8.3% increase compared to 2019. 

For 2021, both in-store and online sales are expected to increase between 8.5% to 10.5%. 

In-store shopping is expected to account for 33% of holiday sales, according to a survey from consulting firm Deloitte, compared to 28% in 2020. 

Your health and safety are still the most important thing to keep in mind during Black Friday shopping this year. So if you do plan to shop in stores, remember to wear a mask  if required.

Here are Stash’s tips for taking advantage of deals without overspending on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and beyond.

1-Build a budget and stick to it

Before you start adding items to your cart this year, you need a budget. And If you haven’t set one up, consider using one like the 50-30-20 budget. First, figure out your monthly income and then break that into three different categories: necessary, fixed expenses (50%) variable expenses (30%), and savings and investments (20%). Your holiday shopping will come from your savings, and your discretionary income. You can use this budget template to stay on track.

You might have also been saving specifically for your holiday spending, so take any funds you’ve set aside into consideration as well. Once you have a set amount of money in mind, you can avoid spending money you don’t have on gifts for other people, or for yourself. You might want to create a partition1 in your Stash account that’s dedicated specifically to money that you’ll use for holiday gifts. 

2-Don’t get distracted by unnecessary purchases

While it’s nice to pick up something for yourself while you’re doing your shopping this holiday season, don’t get overwhelmed by items that aren’t in your budget. Don’t go to a store or browse online unless you know exactly what you’re looking for and what it’ll cost. 

Consider writing out a list of all the things you want to buy, and then see if you can find discounts by shopping around.

3-Do your research and compare prices

If you have a specific item in mind that you want to buy during the holiday sales, figure out how to get the best price for it. Maybe you’re planning to buy a slow cooker for your sister or a tablet for your kids. Look around for which store is offering the best price for what you’re buying. Something on your list may go on sale on a specific day or at a specific time. 

You might also be able to get cash back, discounts, or rebates through third-party sites such as Rakuten to get Black Friday deals. Or you can use extensions like the Honey app to get discounts and promo codes for certain online purchases.

4-Use a card that earns rewards 

You might have a card that you can use to earn rewards or cash back points. Try to use those reward cards when you’re doing holiday shopping on Black Friday so that you can earn rewards while also getting the best prices.

With Stash’s Stock-Back® card2, you can earn a percentage of every qualifying purchase back for each purchase that you make. So when you buy something from Amazon, you can earn a percentage of that purchase back as Amazon stock. 

5-Make sure that you can return items

Lastly, make sure that you (or the person you’re shopping for) can return whatever you purchase. If you find a better price for the item or change your mind, you’ll want to be able to return it. Be aware of the return policies where you’re shopping and keep any receipt that you receive. 

Consider these steps to help you avoid spending too much money on gifts this holiday season. And remember to stay safe while you shop this year!

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author

Written by

Claire Grant

Claire is a content writer for Stash.

1Money moved into a partition must be moved back to the bank account available balance to be used and does not earn interest.
2All rewards earned through use of the Stash Visa Debit card (Stock-Back® Card) will be fulfilled by Stash Investments LLC. Rewards will go to your Stash personal investment account, which is not FDIC insured. You will bear the standard fees and expenses reflected in the pricing of the investments that you earn, plus fees for various ancillary services charged by Stash. Stash Stock-Back® Rewards is not sponsored or endorsed by Green Dot Bank, Green Dot Corporation, Visa U.S.A., or any of their respective affiliates.
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