About five years ago my cousin invited me out for my first “Black Friday Experience.” I watched her flip through big box store circulars at the end of the dinner table and wondered what all the fuss was about. I always heard about Black Friday and saw the crazed hordes of people running through the entrance of Target on the news the next day, but I never thought of joining the madness. Needless to say this will be my fifth straight Black Friday outing.
Recently, some stores have decided to open on Thanksgiving Day instead of Black Friday, which I think is a huge mistake. Thanksgiving is the one day a year when families are all able to come together and spend time. Having stores open up on Thanksgiving makes it difficult for many people to do this. It starts with the employees. Stores need so many employees on the clock to cater to all the shoppers that they are expecting. This means that if you work retail, there is an extremely high chance you will be getting a call to work. On the other hand, people who are depending on the deals to be able to afford gifts for the holidays are going to have to leave early from Thanksgiving dinner ensuring that they will get the item they are looking for. When stores open on Thanksgiving as opposed to Black Friday, the big box retailers win and families lose.
Secondly, having stores opening at midnight makes Black Friday fun. Going shopping at 12 a.m. is such a cool experience. Walking in the mall seeing hundreds of people there after midnight is such a strange, fun feeling. I don’t even hate the idea of stores opening at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving because by that time everyone is done eating and/or traveling back home. Going out shopping when stores are usually closing their doors is half the fun. However, stores who are choosing to open in the afternoon on Thanksgiving are doing a great disservice to families and shoppers across America.
I do see progress as more and more stores are announcing that they will be opening later in the night and I hope that this continues. The idea of having people work on a holiday is ridiculous. I can assure you that theses retailers will not be losing any money if they open at 10-12 at night opposed to 12 in the afternoon. The biggest shopping day of the year does not need to be extended to two days for these places to make their money. So please, everyone have a great Thanksgiving and save the shopping for Friday!
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