The mid season sales have just ended and the winter sales haven’t quite begun. If you’re new here in the Netherlands like me, you might also be surprised by the Black Friday korting signs and the explosion of Black Friday related deals online. Find out how to get the best out of Black Friday without going out of budget.
But what is Black Friday?
As you’ve probably guessed or already know, Black Friday isn’t a Dutch tradition. It’s an unofficial holiday borrowed from the US. Black Friday is the Friday after Thanksgiving, where retailers and store-owners massively cut down their prices in order to lure the crowds into early Christmas shopping. It isn’t so much a special occasion as it is a commercial holiday but don’t let that take away the fun of it.
Becoming a pro-Black Friday shopper
Prepare a list and a budget
It can be tempting to just go out there and let yourself be swayed by the attractive deals and savings up for grabs. The worst mistakes are often made on a whim. Before beginning your shopping spree, be sure to map out what you want to buy, what you need to buy and why. From these answers, you can give yourself a clear-cut budget. You’ll be less likely to impulse buy if you have a clear list of items and a rough sketch of what you want to pay for them.
Search ahead of time
Who spends time price-checking or preparing their shopping trips? The answer is not many people, if any, but the answer should be everyone. Look at the prices of items before holiday or sale season to see if you’re getting a good deal or not. Some stores inflate their RRP (regular retail price) to give the illusion of a greater discount. In that vein, don’t forget to sign up for newsletters and email lists. Stores often save supplementary discounts for members! Who knows, you might receive a post-sale discount.
Use the web to your advantage
You could say that Dutch Black Friday is more of a Cyber Weekend because most of the ‘Black Friday deals’ you’ll find here in the Netherlands are online and aren’t limited to Black Friday. If you plan to shop online, put the items you plan on buying in your shopping cart before shoppers rush to empty the stock! It not only stands in for reserving them (which you can’t do online) but also saves you from going off budget. Clear your cookies and browser history or better yet, shop in private mode! Some websites can change the deals and prices to adapt them to your online profile and the deals you might have seen before.
So you’ve decided to brave the cold winter wind and do some in-store shopping. Arm yourself with cash not cards. In addition to defining your budget beforehand, by physically limiting yourself to the cash you have on you, you’ll be much more reluctant to whip out your debit card for a non-budget-covered expense. You should also check out the return policy for all of the items on sale. There’s nothing worse than being stuck with a Black Friday item you don’t want or an unsavoury purchase.
Don’t know where to go? Check out Mediamarkt, drugstores like Kruidvat, and department stores like Hudson’s Bay or debijenkorf. Small local retailers in your area could also be holding sales so take some time to explore.
Buy something on Black Friday that will last
Reckless spending is an ideal not many students can afford. However, being on a student budget does not mean you don’t get to treat yourself, your friends and/or your family! The key to navigating Black Friday like a pro lies in taking advantage of the massive discounts to make an investment purchase. Get something that is worth buying. Generally, this doesn’t include clothing as most items are cheaper during winter or summer sales. The best and most worthwhile Black Friday deals are often found in tech and electronics. Disregarding programmed obsolescence, technology is the perfect investment purchase.
Brand Spotlight: Coolblue
As said before, technology is one of the best purchases to make on Black Friday and during holiday shopping season. Confused about where to find those deals? Check out Coolblue.nl! Their Black Friday sale spans a wide variety of electronic devices and technology and is a great way to compromise saving with investing. Take advantage of the sale to upgrade to a new computer or finally get an external hard drive. Look at their Black Friday deals here!
Though Black Friday is over these are the deals we couldn't wait to get our hands on, here at College Life:
- The Acer Chromebook 14 which was 35% off!
- A new macbook is always great! Turns out the Macbook Pro 13” was 10% off!
- Back up all your documents with the Seagate 5TB portable hard drive at over 10% off!
- Tablets are more practical for taking notes. Grab your Lenovo YOGA Tab 3 Pro tablet with an €80 discount!
- With €50 off, the HP 15-db0930nd was hard to resist!
Black Friday may be over but you never know if there's a mid-season sale right around the corner. Be sure to use student discounts to your advantage to get deals all year round!
Hopefully, with these tips in hand, you’re ready to start your holiday shopping!