The best time to buy holiday gifts - The Buffalo News
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The best time to buy holiday gifts

Contrary to popular belief, Black Friday is not the best day to buy everything on your list. But there are certain days that offer better deals than others for specific kinds of things.

That’s not to say that everything in a certain category will be cheapest that day, but it’s a day that will offer the most great deals. With that in mind, here’s what to buy:

Early in the season. Hot items and popular toys tend to increase in price as they get more scarce leading up to Christmas, so cross those off your list first. The FurReal Friends Cuddles My Giggly Monkey Pet is a hot one (my daughter got one for her birthday and adores it), as are the Cra-Z-Loom rubber band bracelet maker, Skylanders SWAP Force and the Crayola Melt N’ Mold Factory.

Trendy Ugg boots also tend to increase in price as Christmas nears, as do watches and jewelry, according to research by consumer firm Decide for the Wall Street Journal.

Late in the season. Aside from limited-quantity doorbusters like $4 blenders, retailers tend to cut prices on small kitchen appliances as Christmas nears, Decide found.

On Thanksgiving. Some of the best deals on smart phones, apps, and accessories can be found on turkey day. It’s also the day you’ll find the most and best deals on high-definition televisions. Last year, the best prices some stores ever offered on 46” Samsung HDTVs were found that day, according to

For the past two years, there were 70 percent more video game deals offered on Thanksgiving than Black Friday and 229 percent more gaming deals than on Cyber Monday, DealNews said. Exceptions to the rule are games for PlayStation 4 and XBox One consoles, which aren’t expected to be significantly discounted at all this holiday season.

On Black Friday. The season’s best deals on laptops, computers, data storage, kitchenware and cutlery have been found on Black Friday, according to DealNews. That doesn’t mean every computer is cheapest that day, but that’s when there will be the most and best deals offered. There will be great deals on appliances and tools on Black Friday weekend, too.

On Cyber Monday. Great deals on shoes and clothing abound on Cyber Monday, according to DealNews. To sweeten the pot, coupon sites such as and have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to coupons for both.

The week after Black Friday. If you’re like me, you’re really after a day you can shop in peace; a day when store workers are actually available to answer questions.

Research shows the week after Black Friday weekend is the most pleasant time to shop during the holiday season. Many Black Friday promotions will still be going strong, but traffic will be much lighter, giving sales staff the ability to be more attentive, according to analytics firm ShopperTrak.

The quietest day between Thanksgiving and Christmas will be Dec. 4 (a Wednesday), followed by Monday, Tuesday and Friday of that same week, the firm predicts.

After the Christmas season ends. If you’re shopping for yourself, there are a few things you should wait to buy until after the holidays are over, including the obvious gift wrap, cards and decorations. Cameras drop in price in February and March, big-screen TVs go on sale after the Super Bowl and bedding is cheapest in January.


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