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Black Friday 2018: 7 tips to help you get the best deals

Ready your wallets, because Black Friday is right around the corner

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With deals and discounts galore, shopping on one of the biggest sale days of the year can be overwhelming. But don’t fret. Here are a few tips to help you sift through the noise. 

>> On AJC.com: The best stores for discounted Black Friday shopping

1. Create a budget

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Decide how much you want to spend. Once you set your budget, use only cash while you shop and leave your credit cards at home. That way you reduce impulse shopping and spend only what you have. 

2. Prioritize your shopping list

List your items by store and by order of importance. This will help you stay on track as you travel from store to store. Once you arrive at each shop, head to the department first to locate the item on your list.

3. Buy online

Not a fan of the big crowds? Whip out your laptop and score deals from your couch. In-store Black Friday bargains are generally also available online and on apps. Doorbusters, however, are only up for grabs in person. 

>> On AJC.com: All the Black Friday deals to catch in 2018

4. Be skeptical

Some of the reductions you find may be for outdated models. Also, some products may not actually be a steal. Beware of inflated discounts when retailers offer a steep rollback for an already overpriced item. 

5. Check for early and late deals

It’s common for people to hit the malls early. In fact, many deals start Wednesday. However, you may be able to take advantage of late bargains. Some discounts become available later in the day. 

6. Understand the return policy

The rules differ at each store. While some return policies are only valid for 30 days, other may not offer one at all. It’s also a good idea to grab gift receipts to make the exchange or return process easier. 

>> On AJC.com: Black Friday 2018: Target rolls out Black Friday ad 

7. Be nice

Be friendly to employees you encounter, and chat with people you’re waiting in line with. They both may able to help you spot additional bargains.

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