If you are getting prepared for your biggest shopping trek of the year and want to make sure you aren't forgetting anything, these shopping and safety tips will be very helpful.

Black Friday.  It's a morning, day and night of full on shop til you drop activity!  As excited as you are and as prepared as you think you might be, don't forget about safety precautions you'll need to know.

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1. Using one credit card for all purchases is best.  Why?  Because it's easier to cancel just one card instead of several if your wallet or bag are stolen.

2.  Make sure you have your main shopping list and carry an envelope in your bag for receipts from Black Friday ONLY.  This way, everything is in one spot and receipts don't get lost.

3.  Know your gift card rules.  According to mass.gov, gift cards are required to be valid for at least 7 years in Massachusetts and gift cards not clearly marked with both a date of issuance and a date of expiration are valid forever.


4.  Keep your SUV or back seat free of visible shopping bags.  Whenever possible, use the trunk of your car.  Many SUV's have a pull cover for the back hatch area of the vehicle.  Plan to use that to hide any and all of your purchases.  Nobody needs their car broken into and thousands of dollars worth of gifts stolen right before the holiday.  Be smart.


5.  Pack your snacks.  Not many have time to go for a leisurely lunch or dinner while shopping on Black Friday.  Your focus is on getting as many deals as possible, right?!  No time for down time.  Pack easy to eat snacks like almonds,  granola or protein bars, a bottle or two of water and start your night, morning or afternoon off with a hot or iced cup of Dunkin coffee.  It's sure to give you the jumpstart you'll need!

6.  Take it slow and steady on the roads.  As excited as you are to head out and take advantage of the deals and steals to be had on Black Friday, be cautious and aware of your surroundings while driving.  There is a higher risk of car accidents on Black Friday midnight shopping due to the adrenalin and excitement in consumers rushing around to get the deals.  The last thing you want is to get into a car accident and potentially a serious accident resulting in injury or worse.

7.  Try to buddy up with at least 1 shopping companion on Black Friday.  It's safer.  Two is better than one.  And if one of you finds the other's deal, you or she can hold onto it so nobody misses out! It's also always fun to share the experience with a friend.  Sharing purchases and the AMAZING deal you got on it feels SOOO good, doesn't it :)