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Your Guide to Holiday Deals and Best Shipping Dates
This year retailers are adapting their sales to fit a pandemic-era holiday season. Large retailers like Home Depot and Target started their Black Friday deals at the beginning of November and have extended them through December.
2020 holiday deals
To curb the spread of the coronavirus and encourage staying home, many popular stores — like Best Buy and Target — will have its stores closed on Thanksgiving. That doesn’t have to impact your holiday shopping. You’ll find the same Black Friday deals all through the holiday season. Here are what the big names in the game are offering this year:
Walmart is running a total of three Black Friday sales throughout November. Walmart has released their deal in three waves, though we still expect big things to launch on Black Friday — both online and in-store. Doorbusters and the highly-coveted Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X consoles will be available online.
- Nov 25-27 — Final wave of online “Black Friday Deals for Days.”
Amazon’s official Black Friday deals have yet to be announced, though it has released the Holiday Dash Sales Event –– which you can think about like pre-Black Friday fun. Amazon users will also enjoy 20% off items from Amazon Handmade Makers, starting November 26. Expect more deals from Amazon on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
- Nov 26 — 20% off Amazon Handmade Maker items
With deals already available, Target will continue to be a Black Friday destination thanks to its massive 45-page discount booklet. Most of the deals kicked off on November 15 and are set to run through November 21, though you should expect to see Target roll out even more deals through the season. As a bonus, Target has extended its 14-day Price Match Guarantee for the holiday season, meaning shoppers can get a price adjustment all the way up until Christmas eve for any Black Friday-advertised item.
Target’s holiday schedule, not including the deal of the day and exclusive Black Friday sales.
- Nov 15-21 — Electronics, apparel and beauty.
- Nov 22-28 —Toys, kitchen, electronics and video games.
Since mid-October, Best Buy has been offering Black Friday savings to its customers. Current discounts are just a sneak peek; Best Buy’s major deals will come on November 22. As usual, many of the deals from Best Buy this year are targeted at TVs — allowing shoppers to save up to $800. You’ll also be able to take advantage of Best Buy’s extended return period through January 16.
The catch is, many of the best deals offered do require shoppers to be a My Best Buy rewards member. Thankfully it is free to register for the basic membership, but make sure you’re signed in when you’re online shopping.
- Nov 22 — Almost all Black Friday deals available
- Nov 26 — New offers available online
- Nov 27 — Black Friday shopping both online and in-store.
- Nov 28 — Cyber Deals start
Costco members have enjoyed pre-Black Friday deals since November 5 and can continue saving until November 30. Additional Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals will be held in-store and online, expect staggered discounts until then.
- Nov 5-30 — Online and in-warehouse savings available.
- Nov 26 — Exclusive online Thanksgiving Day sales.
- Nov 27-30 — Exclusive Black Friday online and in-warehouse savings.
- Nov 30 — Cyber Monday deals.
Bed, Bath & Beyond
Like other retailers, Bed, Bath & Beyond has released plenty of pre-Black Friday deals, which are expected to continue well through Cyber Monday in a five-day event. Bed, Bath & Beyond is offering its Beyond+ members 25% off both online and in-store from November 25 to 28, though there are plenty of deals for the average customer.
- Nov 26-28 — 20% off entire online purchase
- Nov 27-28 — 25% off all in-store purchases
- Nov 29-30 — For every $300 spent online, shoppers will receive $100 of My Fund Rewards
Homeowners rejoice! Lowe’s Black Friday deals have already started and reach everything from blinds to artificial Christmas trees. Called the “Season of Savings Event,” Lowe’s has select discounts running all the way through the end of January.
Beginning Nov 19 — Up to $700 on major appliances
Covid’s impact on delivery time
When you shop online, you expect your gift to get there on time. Unfortunately, this year we’re not sure that’s going to happen. As retailers have extended their holiday sales, the orders are already pouring in, and there’s a likely chance they could get backed up. Each of the major delivery services has released expected delivery date guidelines you can follow to ensure your packages arrive in time.
Here are the USPS expected delivery dates for this holiday season.
- December 15 — USPS Retail Ground Service
- December 18 — First Class Mail (card and packages less than one pound)
- December 19 — Priority Mail
- December 23 — Priority Mail Express
Here is the UPS 2020 Year-End Holiday Schedule.
- December 15 — UPS® Ground
- December 21 — UPS 3 Day Select®
- December 22 — UPS 2nd Day Air®
- December 23 — UPS Next Day Air®
FedEx notes that these dates may change as this “record-breaking holiday season progresses.”
- December 9 — FedEx SmartPost®
- December 15 – FedEx Home Delivery®, FedEx Ground®
- December 21 — FedEx 3Day® Freight, FedEx Express Saver®
- December 22 — FedEx 2Day®, FedEx 2Day® A.M., FedEx 2Day® Freight
- December 23 — FedEx 1Day® Freight, FedEx Extra Hours®, FedEx Standard Overnight®, FedEx First Overnight®
- December 25 — FedEx Sameday®, FedEx SameDay® City Priority, FedEx SameDay® City Direct
How to pay less for your deliveries
Shipping might also be more expensive this fall because of increased demand and COVID-19 precautions. Major parcels are reported to be charging $2-$4 per package due to oversize hard- to-handle packages, as well as higher operating costs.
- Look carefully at shipping costs. Factor this into your total price when comparing shopping options. Some products share major retail cost differences you wouldn’t want to miss.
- Check the “free delivery” perks. Once you pick out your gifts, see if the terms and conditions offer a free delivery based on your spending amount. Another option is to check for coupon codes to use at checkout.
- Use a cash back credit card. If you make sure to pay your credit card on time, use this method to earn extra cash on your holiday purchases and not hurt your budget too much when paying for shipping costs.
- Get creative with your gift search. If you plan to order via Amazon, consider another alternative like Amazon Warehouse. You could save a couple of dollars or find listings up to 70% off retail price.
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