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A Holiday Shopping Checklist for Students

Technology Dominates Black Friday Sales

Last year, the National Retail Federation reported that nearly one-quarter of U.S. consumers were planning to shop on Thanksgiving Day. And according to a survey by Deloitte, the average respondent planned to spend $286 over Thanksgiving holiday sales, split between in-store and online channels. If you’re planning to hit the sales this holiday season and shop for your dorm room and everyone on your list, you’re not alone. Anyone can show up and spend money, but it takes a savvy shopper to execute a plan of action and get the most for your money. Here’s what to know before you go.

Know What to Buy

Overall, electronics and gadgets tend to dominate Black Friday sales. Last year, Xbox 360 accounted for 1.2 percent of all purchases at Walmart. And overall, Microsoft's game consoles totaled 2 percent of all Black Friday sales at Walmart. Big ticket retailers often pre-advertise their Cyber Monday sales so you know exactly what you're getting before you go. Tablets are popular at holiday sales with last year's Google Nexus 7 16GB dropping as low as $200. Get strategic with where you shop. Apple stores are unlikely to drop their prices by much, whereas licensed retailers like Amazon are poised for Cyber Monday sales.

Come Prepared

Set your budget so you know exactly how much you can spend. Know all the prices on your wish list from gadgets to jewelry so you know how good of a deal you're actually getting. Remember to bring your student ID, as some retailers will give additional discounts to college kids including Banana Republic.

Remember that some Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals cater especially to students, like Kaplan Test Prep with discounts on prep materials for the GMAT and more. If you’re going with family members of friends, divide and conquer and send each person to a different department to stock up on what the group wants.

Download Store Apps

Download your favorite store apps or DealNews apps and check their schedule for Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales. Being prepared can mean the difference between scoring a huge deal and just saving a few dollars. Apps can help you shop for sales, but can also be used right in the store. When you find a deal, look at your apps to see if there’s a better sale going on that you can make instead.

Pick a Store That Has It All

Instead of hitting up three or four different stores, focus on just one that has everything you need from electronics to clothes. Retailers like Walmart sell everything you could ever need for your home and gift list. Such stores may also take a more subtle approach to marketing directly towards students with deals on items like dorm room decor, backpacks, printers and devices to help with studying to term papers.

Sleep in on Black Friday

While you can get amazing deals on Black Friday, you don’t necessarily need to stay up all night and sit in a crowded parking lot to get them. Many stores start offering deals on Thanksgiving night. Others may have the same deals posted for Cyber Monday, giving the option to shop from your device right from your bed.

Written by TeamSMF

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A Holiday Shopping Checklist for Students Reviewed by Nicolas At SMF on Monday, October 13, 2014 Rating: 5
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