Experts are predicting 76.9 million people are going to shop on Black Friday, which means safety will be an issue. You probably remember last year a Walmart employee was trampled to death in the rush?
I called expert shopper Suzanne O’Connor of BargainsLA.com for advice to stay safe in big crowds.
- Don’t carry a handbag. “You really want to be hands free,” Suzanne said. “If you have two arms it is better for safety. You won’t get knocked over. Plus you have talons, you can hold onto things.”
- Wear comfortable/athletic shoes so you can move quickly and be able to maneuver. “Keep your those little spike numbers at home,” she said.
- Shop with a friend — if you both have the same goals for the day. Are you focused on crossing every item off your list? Don’t shop with a girlfriend who likes to chat. Leave at home anyone you are going to argue with over purchases (like a boyfriend). Talk before you go and make a plan of action.
- If you shop on Black Friday go specifically for something, don’t just shop in general. This is not the day to be casual.
- Wait to shop on items like mens’ sweaters and bathrobes. They aren’t going to sell out and they will go on sale again.
- Take mass transit if you do not have any bulky purchases planned. Avoid road rage and mall parking lots!
- Never grab something out of anybody’s hand, push or shove, or be rude to another person. “Keep a level head,” Suzanne said. “Your kid is not going to die if he doesn’t get the best toy of the year. It’s actually a good lesson.”
- If you are still worried about safety, shop later in the day when the bum rush is over.
Suzanne is already 75 percent done with her Christmas shopping and she does not plan to lift a finger on Black Friday. Instead, she is going to eat pie for breakfast.