Black Friday 2012: What NOT to buy

3:31 PM, Nov 20, 2012   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida -- This whole week, we've been bombarded with ads promising Black Friday bargains.

While some deals may be real, there are some items retail experts say you could actually skip on Friday and wait for an even better price.

See Also: Black Friday Deals and Tips

Sure, the folks at the head of the line at your local Best Buy are almost certain to save hundreds on the deals they score. But once those door-busters are gone, there may be reason wait.

Bear Silakhom, who has staked his claim at the front of a Best Buy in Pinellas County since Saturday, is determined to save hundreds -- maybe even thousands -- of dollars on a couple of Black Friday bargains.

"Like a TV for sure. And a laptop," he said. One for him and one for his parents.

But the limited deals may only be a best buy for the first few in line. The Wall Street Journal,  having crunched years of data, found Black Friday is not really a bargain for the rest of us.

"Actually, I find more things on sale closer to Christmas than I do on Black Friday," said Joann Schulz, who operates three Learning Express stores in our area.

Schulz freely admits Black Friday is not necessarily the best day to shop for some toys. In fact, that's the number one item on our "no no" list, because you can likely expect even deeper toy discounts in coming weeks.

"There are things that we will put on special as we see the holidays going forward, as we see how much inventory we have left," said Schulz.

What else should you not buy on Black Friday?

According to bargain website DealNews:

  • Digital cameras. The new camera models will be out in the spring, and if you can wait until then, prices on current models will drop fast.
  • Video game consoles. Prices are good, but wait for the "bundles." Manufacturers and many retailers will throw in free game titles after Black Friday.
  • Big Screen TV's. Televisions will likely stay discounted through the season. In fact, DealNews found off-brands may get even cheaper.
  • Christmas Decorations. Many of these are already on sale for 50% off, but could be full price on Friday as people flood the stores. So wait until after Friday and they'll be back on sale.
  • Jewelry and watches. The folks who put together the survey found jewelry stores will sometimes mark-up their prices ahead of Black Friday, then "discount" them back to their normal sale price... so no big bargains there.
  • Winter clothing. Good prices now. Great prices come January.

Thomas Thanthima, in line since Saturday, says he has another idea to beat the Black Friday blues:

"When the line starts building up, I'm gonna sell my spot in line and then go down over there," he said, hoping someone will pay him hundreds of dollars for a shot at saving even more than that.

Remember, you don't have to buy on Black Friday, and if you do, be sure it's really a bargain.

Here's a little help. Some good apps to get price comparisons at stores near you include: Amazon Price Checker, TGI Black Friday, and Shopkick.

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