Black Friday is just like Brit’s Boxing Day

Emma Munbodh

black friday1 300x225 Black Friday is just like Brits Boxing DayAmerica’s busiest shopping day is in full swing today as traditional Black Friday sales hit streets across the country. The exciting shopping season began as early as 4am with around-the-clock shoppers pouring in to bag themselves opening sale bargains and even early Christmas presents. The seasonal event comes following a much awaited Thanksgiving yesterday when Americans around the world gathered to mark the annual historical occasion of giving thanks together.

Black Friday, also known as the US shopping frenzy, kicked off late last night following weeks of sale preparation and months of eager anticipation from American shopaholics. The day traditionally marks the start of the Christmas shopping season. In many ways, I see Black Friday as our Boxing Day, the moment we Brits patiently wait 365 days for our favourite stores to finally hang up those half price banners.

Impatient shoppers were queuing this morning whilst other stores began sales on Thanksgiving day yesterday in a bid to cash early by enticing shoppers with early bird Black Thursday discounts. To commemorate the festive spirit many retails also gave their staff a Black Friday day off despite the anticipated busy spell.

Offices and businessmen also enjoy a day off today to indulge in the Black Friday festivities. Obama himself was spotted last year hitting the stores with his wife and two daughters. He was pictured splashing out in a Washington D.C bookstore in aid of Small Business Saturday, which follows the frenzy of Black Friday and encourages seasonal shoppers to support small and local businesses that are neglected over the Thanksgiving period.

The term Black Friday itself doesn’t immediately remind us of splashing out and seasonal bank holidays. In fact it may sound rather gloomy, negative even. The day’s name originated in the sixties to kick off the social shopping season – ‘black’ represents stores shifting in price from the red to the black in a period when accounting records were indicated using red for loss and black for profit. Although coined decades ago, the shopping occasion initially began following the Modern Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1924 which later led Thanksgiving’s Boxing Day to become the busiest shopping day in the American calendar.

What stores are celebrating?

Almost all stores in the US will be celebrating today with special offers and one off deals across high streets.

Apple’s exclusive Black Friday offers went live in the early hours and are offering rare discounts on the latest iPod touch, the new iPad with retina display, Apple headphones, Smart Covers and MacBooks. Sadly, the iPhone has been excluded from all offers! Macy’s, the home of the ‘little brown bag’, started their ‘Black Friday specials’ online last night and stores opened from midnight, to 1pm this afternoon. These one off’s however are only available until November 24th and online deals in stores supposedly end today. For any Brits hoping to bag some offers, visit Amazon for international Black Friday deals the site are currently offering as much as 70% off on watches, fragrances and electrical.

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  • John Andrews

    You may ’see’ your boxing day as such, but it is not. For eons, the US merchants have held the post Christmas ‘White Sale’ or Winter clearance. That’s when the ‘half-price’ banners come out. Black Friday is mostly loss leaders in limited quantities. The frenzy gets the rest of the ’sale’ running at from none to moderate discount.

  • RobertB

    Some limited, but mainly real discounts (at a loss to the shops) on unlimited items. The purpose is to get the folks into the stores where they usually buy more items to offset the losses. Pretty much win-win situation, which is why it is so popular. The ‘boxing day’ equivalent of clearing out over-stock pretty much goes year-round, depending on the store, but especially after Christmas.

  • Dromo

    Its called black friday as that is the day that fixed costs are paid off and from then on all sales are profit makers.. thus retailers go from being in the red to being in the black. If only comet could have lasted another few weeks, LOL. Where will this senseless hight street slaughter end? Are we to have nothing but pound shops, Bookmakers (who make no books) and KeeeBab shops. Where might I buy Hair Lacquer, pray tell?

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