For the first time in 30 years, Walmart will be closed on Thanksgiving
For the first time in 30 years, Walmart, the nation's largest retailer, will be closed on Thanksgiving, the company announced this week, saying it wants to give a break to essential staff who have been working during the pandemic.
“We know this has been a trying year, and our associates have stepped up. We hope they will enjoy a special Thanksgiving Day at home with their loved ones,” John Furner, president and CEO of Walmart U.S, said in a statement.
Thanksgiving shoppers will need to plan ahead, or do their last-minute purchasing elsewhere. And shoppers used to getting a jump-start on gift purchasing after the big meal will have to use other options.
Online sales, which have increased annually during the holiday period, may see a further spike this year as some shoppers avoid crowds in order to better social distance and retailers increase their investments in online deals and technology.
Walmart said it would release information about its store hours for the Friday after Thanksgiving — otherwise known as Black Friday — at a later date.
It remains to be seen how many other retailers will follow suit. For years, Walmart led the way in opening earlier and earlier on Black Friday. Some stores even opened at midnight. Others, including Walmart, were also open for holiday shopping on Thanksgiving Day itself.
“We had an arms race and the leader in the arms race just stepped back,” said Charlie O’Shea, Walmart analyst for Moody’s.
In recent years, retailers have started stretching out their Black Friday deals and the day itself is less significant.
“Black Friday sales tend to run all week now anyway. And then you have Cyber Monday. Plenty of time to get good deals!” Ashley MacPhee, a long-term care health care worker, told NBC News in an online message.
Kmart, Kohl’s, Kroger, Macy’s, and Toys R Us did not respond to an NBC News request for comment.
Spokespersons for Best Buy and Target said there were no details to share yet. An Office Depot spokesman said the store would be closed Thanksgiving but hadn’t finalized all of its holiday plans. A Home Depot spokesperson said the store would be closed on Thanksgiving and open on Black Friday. Costco and Lowe’s spokespersons said their stores are always closed on Thanksgiving.
Retailers have had their usual shopping calendars and supply chains scrambled by the coronavirus. Asian suppliers typically begin shipping for the U.S. holiday season in May and June, but retailers stocked up last year as tariff increases escalated. Amazon also hasn’t released a date yet for its annual Prime Day sales, which have taken place in the middle of July.
“While Walmart has taken a very proactive approach, other retailers and shopping center operators will probably wait to see how the virus and resulting government actions will continue to impact in-store traffic before making final decisions,” said Brian Field, Senior Director at ShopperTrak, which monitors consumer foot traffic in stores.
In-store retail foot traffic is down 37 percent year over year for the weeks of July 10-18, according to the firm's latest data. That's significantly improved from an 80 percent decrease in April as measured cases first soared, but only slightly improved from one month ago, where it was down 41 percent.
Which stores will be open or not should be clearer after Labor Day, said Field.
Most shoppers were understanding and supportive of Walmart's move. They said they were grateful for the hard work that essential workers such as supermarket clerks and stockers have been doing during the pandemic at personal risk, and the employees deserve a break.
“The stores in our area have had many workers get sick over the last several months and the stores were closed for deep cleaning,” said Jocelyn, a mother of four from Massachusetts, who asked that her last name be withheld for privacy reasons.
“I think it's the least they could do for these essential workers,” she said.
Ben Popken is a senior business reporter for NBC News.
Here are the stores open on Thanksgiving Day 2016 — Walmart, Best Buy, Kohl's and more
The wait is almost over: Thanksgiving is just hours away, and major retailers are gearing up in anticipation for the holiday rush. While some stores refuse to take employees away from their families on Thanksgiving day, others see the Thursday afternoon as a prime time to reel in some customers with early sales, allowing shoppers to hit the racks before the late night rush of Black Friday to scope out the savings.
Here's a list of stores that will be open on Thanksgiving Day.
Walmart: Although most Walmart stores are open 24 hours, the Black Friday savings will start at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. To find your local store, visit the Walmart website.
Best Buy: Best Buy's doors will open from 5 p.m. on Thursday evening to 1 a.m. on Friday morning, according to CNBC. To find the nearest store, visit the Best Buy website.
Kohl's: Black Friday deals at Kohl's will kick off at 6 p.m on Thursday. Visit the Kohl's website to find a store near you.
JCPenney: JCPenney employees will have no time for Thanksgiving dinner this Thursday. CNBC reported that the store will be open at 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. To find the JCPenney store closest to you, visit the JCPenney website.
Toys R Us: Most Toys R Us stores will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 5 p.m. until Friday night. To find your local store hours, visit the Toys R Us website.
Target: Target stores will welcome the Thanksgiving crowd at 6 p.m. on Thursday and will close their doors at either 10 p.m., 11 p.m. or noon, depending on the location. To find out when your nearest Target will close, visit the Target website.
Sears: Sears shops will be open from 6 p.m. until midnight on Thursday, and will welcome Black Friday shoppers at 5 a.m. on Friday.
Macy's: According to BestBlackFriday.com, select Macy's locations will be open from 5 p.m. until 2 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. The site currently lists the following Macy's store locations as opening at 5 p.m.: Ala Moana Center in Honolulu, Hawaii; Scottsdale Fashion Square in Scottsdale, Arizona; Cherry Hill Mall in Cherry Hill, New Jersey; Moorestown Mall in Moorestown, New Jersey; and Christiana Mall in Newark, Delaware.
To find out when your nearest Macy's opens on Thanksgiving, check out the Macy's website.
Those who are willing to brave the Thanksgiving crowds should come prepared. Here is a list of all the coupons you'll need for a successful holiday shopping experience.
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What are Walmart’s hours on Thanksgiving 2016?
What are Walmart’s hours on Thanksgiving? Walmart open Thanksgiving 2016? We have all the details for you about Walmart’s Thanksgiving and Black Friday 2016 hours!
Need to run out to the store and grab a few extra ingredients for Thanksgiving dinner? While some grocery stores and department stores are closed on Thanksgiving, most Walmart stores around the country will be open on Thanksgiving. So, that means you can pop out to the store and grab whatever you need to make Thanksgiving as good as possible for your fam and friends!
Most of their stores will be open regular hours on Thanksgiving, which means the 24-hour supercenters will remain open the whole time through Black Friday.
More amazon: Best Black Friday Deals on Amazon
Walmart will be undergoing some added delays as they move things around the store to prep for their Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving. In most states, Walmart’s Black Friday sales and deals begin at 6 p.m. That’s also when many of their Doorbuster deals for Black Friday 2016 will be released.
Related: Walmart Black Friday Ad 2016
Click on the link in the tweet below to find out all of their great Black Friday deals!
More amazon: Best Black Friday Deals on Amazon
We also recommend checking out our official list of the Best Black Friday Deals on Amazon 2016 for more great deals this Black Friday!
Walmart is going all out to attract shoppers this holiday season.
Customers can grab Black Friday deals on Walmart.com starting on Nov. 24 at 12:01 a.m. ET. Most stores will be open regular hours with Black Friday deals starting at 6 p.m. on Nov. 25.
Walmart's Top Black Friday Deals in Store and Online on Nov. 24
Walmart said it's stocked up on some of the most sought-after items, with more than1.5 million televisions, nearly two million tablets and computers and three million video games in stock.
Here's more from Walmart
Black Friday 2016: More Walmart pre-Black Friday deals now live; eBay Cyber Monday
Black Friday 2016: Walmart launching Cyber Monday deals Nov. 25
What stores are open Thanksgiving 2016? Hours for Walmart, Target, Kohl's, Best Buy and more
Guess what Walmart is bringing back?
Some shopping helpful hints
Walmart will once again offer wristbands for select in-demand items including the Phillips 55-inch Smart 4K TV, the HP 15.6-inch Touch Laptop and the DJI Drone Phantom Standard 3 so customers know when those items are no longer available.
Some stores may begin handing out wristbands prior to when the event begins. Customers who receive a wristband can then shop the store and return within two hours after the event start time to receive their item.
Customers wanting to take advantage of Walmart's annual wireless phone event can make appointments while at the store on Thursday night beginning at 6 p.m. Walmart's wireless offer includes a $250 Walmart gift card and $0 down when qualified customers purchase a Samsung or Apple phone and sign up for an installment plan with AT&T Next or Verizon Device Payment. Phone activations will begin at 9 p.m. on Nov. 24.
You can also download the Walmart app with a store map to show you the location of the top deals. Printed copies of the maps will also be available in stores.
Cyber Monday gets off to an early start
Walmart is getting a jump on Cyber Monday with its online specials available two days early.
Walmart's Cyber Monday prices will go live Nov. 25.
Customers that want to shop early can do so starting with Black Friday deals on Walmart.com at 12:01 a.m. ET Thanksgiving morning, continuing when Walmart's Black Friday event begins in stores at 6 p.m. local time Thanksgiving Day, and then throughout Cyber Week beginning Friday at 12:01 a.m. ET.
Top deals include:
Cyber Week Deals starting Friday, Nov. 25 at 12:01 a.m. ET
- Samsung 60" 1080p HD Smart LED TV for $579 with $80 Walmart Gift Card ($1,120 savings)
- Google Home
- Promark P70 VR Drone
- Quadrone Hybrid Drone
- Fujifilm Instax Mini 7S Instant Camera
- Black + Decker Robotic Vacuum
- bObsweep bObi Pet Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
- Polaroid Cube+ Action Camera with WiFi
- 6V Spider-Man Speed Coupe for $79 ($70 savings)
- 6V Trolls Speed Coupe for $79 ($70 savings)
- Ozark Trail 28-Piece Premium Camping Combo Set
- 55" My First Trampoline with Lightpad and Enclosure
- Lifetime 44" Portable Adjustable Basketball System
- Gold's Gym AbFirm Pro
- Ozark Trail 30-Ounce Double-Wall, Vacuum-Sealed Tumbler for $9.74
- Boots for the family starting at $14.88
- Activewear for the family starting at $5
- Denim for the family starting at $10
Cyber Monday Deals starting Monday, Nov. 28 at 12:01 a.m. ET
- Samsung HDTVs over 50 percent off MSRP
- Samsung 65" 4K Ultra HD LED Smart TV
- VIZIO 50" 4K Ultra HD SmartCast Smart LED TV
- Dell Inspiron 15 Gaming Edition Laptop PC for $999.99 ($300 savings)
- Call of Duty Dragonfly Drone with Camera
- Drones from DJI, Parrot, Autel, Yuneed and more starting at $199
- Nerf N-Strike MEGA Mastodon Blaster with Free Blaster for $51 ($28 savings)
- Sunglasses from Prada starting at $99.99, with other savings on brands like Ray-Ban, Gucci, Miu Miu, Cartier and more on Marketplace
- Watches from Michael Kors starting at $99.99, with other savings on brands like Omega, Movado and more on Marketplace
- Handbags from Rebecca Minkoff starting at $71, with other savings on brands like Michael Kors, Kate Spade, Fossil and more on Marketplace
- Boots from brands like Frye and UGG starting at $135 on Marketplace
- Outerwear for the family starting at $9
- Diamond jewelry savings up to $3,000
Walmart offers free shipping on orders of $50 or more, as well as free pickup at Walmart stores, which becomes increasingly popular during the holidays.
Opening hours 2016 walmart thanksgiving
Thanksgiving 2016: Opening hours for Walmart, Target, Best Buy and other nationwide stores
Forget Black Friday – and wolf down the turkey and trimmings. If you really want to get an early bargain from the post-Thanksgiving sales, you ought to be there first thing on Thanksgiving itself, with many major chains now throwing open their doors to shoppers on the holiday. Here are the Thanksgiving opening hours for some of America’s most popular stores.
THE VIDEO THAT SHOWS HOW DIFFERENT BLACK FRIDAY IS IN THE US AND THE UK
Open on Thanksgiving
Best Buy: 5pm to 1am
Dick’s Sporting Goods: 6pm overnight to 2pm Black Friday
Gap: 6pm overnight to 10pm Black Friday, depending on mall hours
JC Penney: 3pm overnight to 5pm Black Friday
Kohl’s: 6pm overnight to Black Friday
Kmart: 7pm overnight to 2pm Friday
Macy’s: 5pm to 2am
Old Navy: 4pm overnight to midnight Black Friday
RadioShack: 8am to 1pm
Sears: 6pm to midnight
Target: 6pm overnight to late Black Friday
Toys R Us: 5pm overnight to 11pm Black Friday
Walgreens: 8am to 10pm
Walmart: regular opening hours, sales begin at 6pm
Open on Black Friday only
Barnes & Noble: opens 8am
Bed, Bath & Beyond: opens 6am
Costco: opens 9am
Hobby Lobby: opens 8am
Home Depot: opens 6am
Lowe’s: opens 6am
Office Depot: opens 6am
Sam’s Club: opens 7am
Staples: opens 6am
TJ Maxx: opens 7am
Black Friday (shopping)
Name in the US for the Friday following Thanksgiving Day
For other uses, see List of Black Fridays.
DC USA shopping center in Washington, D.C. on Black Friday in 2009
Canada, United Kingdom, South Africa, Ireland, Australia, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Africa, Benelux, Sweden, Brazil, Mexico (as El Buen Fin), and increasingly many other parts of the world.
|Date||Day after U.S. Thanksgiving|
|2020 date||November 27 (2020-11-27)|
|2021 date||November 26 (2021-11-26)|
|2022 date||November 25 (2022-11-25)|
|2023 date||November 24 (2023-11-24)|
|Related to||Thanksgiving, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday, Christmas, Buy Nothing Day|
Black Friday is a colloquial term for the Friday following Thanksgiving Day in the United States. Many stores offer highly promoted sales on Black Friday and open very early (sometimes as early as midnight), or some time on Thanksgiving Day.
Black Friday has routinely been the busiest shopping day of the year in the United States since at least 2005.
Origin of the term Black Friday
The earliest evidence of the phrase Black Friday originated in Philadelphia, dating back to at least 1961, where it was used by police to describe the heavy pedestrian and vehicular traffic that would occur on the day after Thanksgiving. This usage dates to at least 1961.
Since early 21st century, there have been attempts by US-based retailers to introduce a retail "Black Friday" to other countries around the world. Retailers outside the US have attempted to promote the day to remain competitive with US-based online retailers. For centuries, the adjective "black" has been applied to days upon which calamities occurred. Many events have been described as "Black Friday", although the most significant such event in American history was the Panic of 1869, which occurred when financiers Jay Gould and James Fisk took advantage of their connections with the Grant Administration in an attempt to corner the gold market. When President Grant learned of this manipulation, he ordered the Treasury to release a large supply of gold, which halted the run and caused prices to drop by eighteen percent. Fortunes were made and lost in a single day, and the president's own brother-in-law, Abel Corbin, was ruined.
The earliest known use of "Black Friday" to refer to the day after Thanksgiving occurred in the journal, Factory Management and Maintenance, for November 1951, and again in 1952. Here it referred to the practice of workers calling in sick on the day after Thanksgiving, in order to have a four-day weekend. However, this use does not appear to have caught on. Around the same time, the terms "Black Friday" and "Black Saturday" came to be used by the police in Philadelphia and Rochester to describe the crowds and traffic congestion accompanying the start of the Christmas shopping season. In 1961, the city and merchants of Philadelphia attempted to improve conditions, and a public relations expert recommended re-branding the days "Big Friday" and "Big Saturday"; but these terms were quickly forgotten.
Use of the phrase spread slowly, first appearing in The New York Times on November 29, 1975, in which it still refers specifically to "the busiest shopping and traffic day of the year" in Philadelphia. Although it soon became more widespread, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported in 1985 that retailers in Cincinnati and Los Angeles were still unaware of the term.
As the phrase gained national attention in the early 1980s, merchants objecting to the use of a derisive term to refer to one of the most important shopping days of the year suggested an alternative derivation: that retailers traditionally operated at a financial loss for most of the year (January through November) and made their profit during the holiday season, beginning on the day after Thanksgiving. When this was recorded in the financial records, once-common accounting practices would use red ink to show negative amounts and black ink to show positive amounts. Black Friday, under this theory, is the beginning of the period when retailers would no longer be "in the red", instead taking in the year's profits. The earliest known published reference to this explanation occurs in The Philadelphia Inquirer for November 28, 1981.
In more recent decades global retailers have adopted the term and date to market their own holiday sales.
The day after Thanksgiving has been regarded as the beginning of the United States Christmas shopping season since 1952. The practice may be linked with the idea of Santa Claus parades. Parades celebrating Thanksgiving often include an appearance by Santa at the end of the parade, with the idea that "Santa has arrived" or "Santa is just around the corner" because Christmas is always the next major holiday following Thanksgiving.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many Santa or Thanksgiving Day parades were sponsored by department stores. These included the Toronto Santa Claus Parade, in Canada, sponsored by Eaton's, and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade sponsored by Macy's. Department stores would use the parades to launch a big advertising push. Eventually, it just became an unwritten rule that no store would try doing Christmas advertising before the parade was over. Therefore, the day after Thanksgiving became the day when the shopping season officially started.
Thanksgiving Day's relationship to Christmas shopping led to controversy in the 1930s. Retail stores would have liked to have a longer shopping season, but no store wanted to break with tradition and be the one to start advertising before Thanksgiving. For this reason, in 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued a presidential proclamation proclaiming Thanksgiving to be the fourth Thursday in November rather than the last Thursday, meaning in some years one week earlier, in order to lengthen the Christmas shopping season. Most people adopted the President's change, which was later reinforced by an act of Congress, but many continued to celebrate Thanksgiving Day on the traditional date. Some started referring to the new date as Franksgiving.
In 2015, Amazon.com was the first to offer "Black Friday in July" deals on what they called "Prime Day", promising better deals than on Black Friday. Amazon repeated the practice in 2016 and 2017, and other companies began offering similar deals.
Analyst Marshal Cohen of The NPD Group claimed in 2020 that Black Friday is declining in favor of online shopping, and that the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated this process. The pandemic also resulted in holiday deals being offered over a longer period of time, even as early as October. Fewer people shopped in person on Black Friday 2020, and most business took place online. Market research company Numerator said sellers of clothing, tools and other items considered nonessential during lockdowns were not promoted as heavily because lower production meant less available to sell.Adobe Analytics reported that online sales reached $9 billion in 2020, 22% more than the previous year. Foot traffic to stores fell 48% in 2020 from last year, according to RetailNext, while Sensormatic Solutions reported a 52% decrease.
For many years, retailers pushed opening times on Black Friday earlier and earlier, eventually reaching midnight, before opening on the evening of Thanksgiving. In 2009, Kmart opened at 7 pm on Thanksgiving, in order to allow shoppers to avoid Black Friday traffic and return home in time for dinner with their families. Two years later, a number of retailers began opening at 8 pm or 9 pm, on what became derisively known as "Black Thursday". In subsequent years, other stores have followed this trend, opening earlier and earlier on Thanksgiving Day, or remaining open all day, beginning in the early morning hours. Some retail and media sources have used the terms "Gray Thursday" or "Brown Thursday" instead.
The 2014 "Black Thursday" sales were generally a failure, as overall sales for the holiday weekend fell 11% compared to the previous year despite heavy traffic at the stores on Thanksgiving night. In response, a number of retailers decided to go back to closing on Thanksgiving for 2015, and Walmart, although it is holding firm opening on the holiday and holding its sale, also pledged to offer the same deals online for those who wished to stay home.
Most retailers abandoned efforts to hold doorbuster sales on Thanksgiving in 2020; large crowds have been forbidden under most circumstances since March due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, major retailers such as Walmart and Target had already reduced their hours and dropped 24/7 operations in response to the pandemic, and several retailers known for opening on the holiday (particularly Kmart, which has typically been open regular hours) have rapidly declined. According to Adobe Analytics, online shopping set a record on Thanksgiving Day 2020 with $5.1 billion in total spending, 21.5 percent higher than in 2019.
Black Friday around the world
Black Friday is not an official holiday in the United States, but California and some other states observe "The Day After Thanksgiving" as a holiday for state government employees. It is sometimes observed in lieu of another federal holiday, such as Columbus Day. Many non-retail employees and schools have both Thanksgiving and the following Friday off. Along with the following regular weekend, this makes Black Friday weekend a four-day weekend, which is said to increase the number of potential shoppers.
The SouthPark neighborhood of Charlotte, North Carolina, is the most trafficked area of the United States on Black Friday.
Black Friday is a shopping day for a combination of reasons. As the first day after the last major holiday before Christmas, it marks the unofficial beginning of the Christmas shopping season. Additionally, many employers give their employees the day off as part of the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. In order to take advantage of this, virtually all retailers in the country, big and small, offer various sales including limited amounts of "doorbuster" items to entice traffic.
For many years, it was common for retailers to open at 6 a.m, but in the late 2000s many opened at 4 am - 5 am. The early 2010s have seen retailers extend beyond normal hours in order to maintain an edge or to simply keep up with the competition. In 2010, Toys 'R' Us began their Black Friday sales at 10 pm on Thanksgiving Day and further upped the ante by offering free boxes of Crayola crayons and coloring books for as long as supplies lasted. Other retailers, like Sears, Express, MK, Victoria's Secret, Zumiez, Tillys, American Eagle Outfitters, Nike, Jordan, Puma, Aéropostale, and Kmart, began Black Friday sales early Thanksgiving morning and ran them through as late as 11 pm Friday evening. Forever 21 went in the opposite direction, opening at normal hours on Friday, and running late sales until 2 am Saturday morning. In 2011, when several retailers (including Target, Kohl's, Macy's, Best Buy, and Bealls) opened at midnight for the first time. In 2012, Walmart and several other retailers announced that they would open most of their stores at 8 pm on Thanksgiving Day, prompting calls for a walkout among some workers. In 2014, stores such as JCPenney, Best Buy, and Radio Shack opened at 6 pm on Thanksgiving Day while stores such as Target, Walmart, Belk, and Sears opened at 7 pm on Thanksgiving Day. Three states—Rhode Island, Maine, and Massachusetts—prohibit large supermarkets, big box stores, and department stores from opening on Thanksgiving, due to what critics refer to as blue laws. The Massachusetts ban on forcing employees to work on major holidays is not a religion-driven "blue law" but part of the state's Common Day of Rest Law. A bill to allow stores to open on Thanksgiving Day was the subject of a public hearing on July 8, 2017.
Historically, it was common for Black Friday sales to extend throughout the following weekend. However, this practice has largely disappeared in recent years, perhaps because of an effort by retailers to create a greater sense of urgency.
The news media usually give heavy play to reports of Black Friday shopping and their implications for the commercial success of the Christmas shopping season, but the relationship between Black Friday sales and retail sales for the full holiday season is quite weak and may even be negative.
In 2014, spending volume on Black Friday fell for the first time since the 2008 recession. $50.9 billion was spent during the four-day Black Friday weekend, down 11% from the previous year. However, the U.S. economy was not in a recession. Christmas creep has been cited as a factor in the diminishing importance of Black Friday, as many retailers now spread out their promotions over the entire months of November and December rather than concentrate them on a single shopping day or weekend.
On April 23, 2014, ".blackfriday" joined a growing list of ICANNtop-level domains (such as—traditionally—.com, .net, and .org).
In 2015, Neil Stern of McMillan Doolittle said, "Black Friday is quickly losing its meaning on many fronts," because many stores opened on Thanksgiving, and a lot of sales started even earlier than that. Online shopping also made the day less important. A Gallup poll in 2012 has shown that only 18% of American adults approve of Black Friday, which is significantly lower than the percentage of American adults who approve of the controversial holiday Columbus Day, which is at 58%.
See also: Boxing Day § Shopping
The large population centers on Lake Ontario and the Lower Mainland in Canada have always attracted cross-border shopping into the United States, and as Black Friday (French: Vendredi Noir) became more popular in the U.S., Canadians often flocked over the border because of their lower prices and a stronger Canadian dollar. After 2001, many were traveling for the deals across the border. Starting in 2008 and 2009, due to the parity of the Canadian dollar compared with the American dollar, several major Canadian retailers ran Black Friday deals of their own to discourage shoppers from leaving Canada.
The year 2012 saw the biggest Black Friday to date in Canada, as Canadian retailers embraced it in an attempt to keep shoppers from travelling across the border.
Before the advent of Black Friday in Canada, the most comparable holiday was Boxing Day in terms of retailer impact and consumerism. Black Fridays in the U.S. seem to provide deeper or more extreme price cuts than Canadian retailers, even for the same international retailer.
See also: Boxing Day § Shopping
In the United Kingdom, the term "Black Friday" originated within the Police and NHS to refer to the Friday before Christmas. It is the day when emergency services activate contingency plans to cope with the increase in workload due to many people going out drinking on the last Friday before Christmas. Contingencies can include setting up mobile field hospitals near City Centre nightspots. The term has then been adopted outside those services to refer to the evening and night of the Friday immediately before Christmas, and would now be considered a mainstream term and not simply as jargon of the emergency services.
Traditionally, Boxing Day had been considered the biggest shopping day of the year in the UK. In the 2010s, several American-owned retailers such as Amazon and Asda, began to hold U.S.-style Black Friday promotions; in 2014, more British retailers began to adopt the concept, including Argos, John Lewis, and Very. That year, police forces were called to shops across Britain to deal with crowd control issues, assaults, threatening customers, and traffic issues. In response to incidents at branches of Tesco, Greater Manchester Police's deputy chief constable Ian Hopkins said shoppers had behaved in an "appalling" fashion, and criticized shops for not making adequate security arrangements to ensure the safety of customers." Following these incidents, some retailers began to discontinue or heavily modify their promotions, with Asda stating that it would not hold all of its sales across a single day.
In 2016, total spending on online retail sites on Black Friday was £1.23 billion, a 2.2% year-over-year increase over 2015. In 2017, UK retail sales in November grew faster than in December for the first time
In Welsh, Black Friday is known as 'Dydd Gwener y Gwario Gwirion' (Silly Spending Friday).
In Mexico, Black Friday was the inspiration for the government and retailing industry to create an annual weekend of discounts and extended credit terms, El Buen Fin, meaning "the good weekend" in Spanish. El Buen Fin has been in existence since 2011 and takes place on November in the weekend prior to the Monday in which the Mexican Revolution holiday is pushed from its original date of November 20, as a result of the measure taken by the government of pushing certain holidays to the Monday of their week in order to avoid the workers and students to make a "larger" weekend (for example, not attending in a Friday after a Thursday holiday, thus making a four-day weekend). On this weekend, major retailers extend their store hours and offer special promotions, including extended credit terms and price promotions.
The concept was imported in Romania by eMAG [ro] and Flanco in 2011 and became bigger each year. The two reported the biggest Black Friday sales in 2014. eMAG sold products worth some 37 million euros while Flanco's sales totaled 22 million euros. Hundreds of retailers announced their participation in the 2015 campaign.
In 2015, 11 million Romanians say they have heard about Black Friday which is 73% of the 15 million people target segment. 6.7 million plan on buying something on biggest shopping event of the year in Romania.
In Romania, Black Friday is one week before the US Black Friday.
Black Friday is little known in India, as its shopping seasons are different. The busiest times for shopping in India (and hence the times with the biggest discounts) tend to be Diwali, followed by regional festivals like Ugadi, Dussehra, and Pongal in South India, Ganeshotsav in Maharashtra, Baisakhi in Punjab and Onam in Kerala. Over the past decade, Independence day sales (on 15 August) have become a large attraction, though most sales in India last for a period of one week.
The growing number of e-commerce websites and large retail shopping centers has contributed to such sales. The big e-commerce retailers in India are trying to emulate the concept of shopping festivals from the United States like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Flipkart, Snapdeal and Amazon have been offering discounted products on the major festivals in India. December witnesses the Great Online Shopping Festival (also called GOSF) for three days where people shop from all the major e-commerce players and large FMCG brands. From 2015, Google has now stopped the GOSF. The aim was to bring leading e-commerce players on a single platform and boost online shopping in India. Survey during GOSF 2014 suggests that 90% of consumers were satisfied with the exclusive discounts offered in GOSF. According to Google Trends, the interest for Black Friday is rising every year. Comparing the search volume of the term Black Friday in November 2012 and November 2013, the increase is almost 50 percent (22,200 is the search volume in November 2012 and 33,100 is the search volume in November 2013, according to the Google Adwords).
French businesses are slowly introducing the Black Friday custom into the market. Discounts of up to 85% were given by retailing giants such as Apple and Amazon in 2014. French electronics retailers such as FNAC and Auchan advertised deals online, while Darty also took part in this once-a-year monster sale. Retailers favored the very American term "Black Friday" to "Vendredi noir" in their advertisements. In 2016, because of the terror attacks in Paris in November the year before, some retailers used the name "Jour XXL" (XXL day) instead of Black Friday. An alternative was brought up by some online businesses in 2018, called "French Days", which goal is to replicate Black Friday during spring season (starting around the first day of May).
On November 20, 2020, the French government finalized an agreement with e-commerce businesses like Amazon and supermarket chains to postpone Black Friday promotions by a week. Discounted shopping promotions were to begin on December 4 instead, after physical stores shuttered during the COVID-19 pandemic were allowed to reopen.
In Germany, "Black Friday" retailer advertisements refer to "Black Week" and "Black Shopping" in English with sales lasting an entire week (excluding Sundays when most retail stores are closed). During this sales period, stores keep their normal working hours. Although goods are offered at reduced prices, the prices are not cut significantly more than normal weekly price reductions. Apple was the first company to run a special Black Friday campaign for the German market in 2006. Apple never used the name Black Friday in Germany, but promotes only a "one-day shopping event". In the first years, mostly internet retailers have used the event as an occasion to attract new customers with discounts, but bricks and mortar stores have already begun to adapt the shopping event. For the first time ever, German customers spent more than €1 billion during the Black Friday weekend in 2016: According to a Centre for Retail Research study, German customers spend around €1.3 billion ($1.54 billion) during the four days from Black Friday to Cyber Monday 2016.
In Germany the term "Black Friday" was registered as a wordmark in December 2013. The owner is Super Union Holdings Limited, a Chinese company. Black Friday GmbH is the exclusive licensee of the word mark in Germany.
In 2015, Swiss retailer Manor was the first to launch a special Black Friday promotion. The year after, most Swiss retailers launched special offers during the Black Friday Week. It is estimated that customers spent around 400 million Swiss Francs on Black Friday 2018. In recent years, Singles Day got more and more important in Switzerland. This shopping day could replace Black Friday as the most important shopping day in Switzerland in 2019
See also: Boxing Day § Shopping
In Australia the term Black Friday refers not to shopping at all but to the devastating Black Friday bushfires which occurred in Victoria 1938–39. Only recently, has it been promoted as a shopping day in Australia by in-store and online retailers. In 2011, Online Shopping USA hosted an event on Twitter. Twitter users had to use the hashtag #osublackfriday, which allowed them to follow along and tweet their favourite deals and discounts from stores. In 2013, Apple extended its Black Friday deals to Australia. Purchasing online gave customers free shipping and free iTunes gift cards with every purchase. The deals were promoted on its website, reading "Official Apple Store—One day Apple shopping event Friday, November 29".Australia Post's ShopMate parcel-forwarding service allows Australian customers to purchase products with "Black Friday" deals from the US and get them shipped to Australia. In addition to this, numerous stores in the country run Black Friday promotions in-store and online throughout the country.
Black Friday started picking up in New Zealand around 2013. In 2015, major retailers such as The Warehouse, Noel Leeming and Harvey Norman offered Black Friday sales, and by 2018 were joined by Farmers, JB Hi-Fi, Briscoes and Rebel Sport. Paymark, which processes around 75 percent of New Zealand's electronic transactions, recorded $219 million NZD (US$151 million) of transactions on Black Friday 2017, up over 10 percent from the previous year.
In Norway, Black Friday started as a publicity stunt campaign back in 2010 to increase the sales to the shopping mall Norwegian Outlet. Since the introduction, it has been promoted every year in a larger and growing market all over the country.
Black Friday is known as Viernes Negro in Costa Rica. In Panama, Black Friday was first celebrated in 2012, as a move from the Government to attract local tourism to the country's capital city. During its first year, it was believed to have attracted an inflow of about 35,000 regional tourists according to the government's immigration census.
In South Africa, Russia, Austria and Switzerland, Black Friday Sale is a joint sales initiative by hundreds of online vendors—among them Zalando, Disney Store, Galeria Kaufhof and Sony. Over its first 24-hour run on November 28, 2013, more than 1.2 million people visited the site, making it the single largest online shopping event in German-speaking countries. There has been growing interest for Black Friday in Poland as well.
2014 marked the introduction in Bolivia, Colombia, Denmark, Italy, Finland, France, Ireland, Lebanon, Nigeria, South Africa and Sweden.
For Middle East, UAE Black Friday started as White Friday campaign in 2014. In 2018 local e-commerce platform noon.com created Yellow Friday in the UAE and KSA. The Yellow Friday Sale is now an annual event in KSA, the UAE, and Egypt, falling around the same time as Black Friday globally.
In 2015, Spain joined with some small retailers. The celebration became more famous year by year, until the big retailers grew.
In the Netherlands, Black Friday was seriously introduced in 2015. Some years before, there were already a number of large and small retailers that used Black Friday in their marketing. However, with a total of 35 participating stores, 2015 can be considered the year in which Black Friday started in the Netherlands due to more widespread support of large retailers. The popularity of Black Friday has grown rapidly in the Netherlands. The number of participating stores has increased to over 125 during the Black Friday period of 2017. For the 2018 edition, 166 shops joined the largest black Friday platform in the Netherlands.
In 2016, Black Friday was introduced in Poland, Greece and Ukraine.
Black Friday in Belgium is seriously marketed by retailers since 2016. Especially online shops have broke sales records during the last edition of Black Friday, which provides a base for further growth of popularity of Black Friday in Belgium. After 2016, Black Friday in Belgium has grown strongly. The participating shops have increased to over 70 during the Black Friday period of 2017. During Black Friday 2018, a total of 119 participating stores were measured in Belgium.
In 2017, Black Friday became widely popular in Latvia. There was even a Black week and Black weekend sales in shopping centres.
Black Friday has been increasingly adopted by stores in Brazil since 2010, although not without its share of inflated prices and other scams, especially in its earlier years, earning the nickname "Black Fraude" (Black Fraud) or also "Black Furadei", which comes from the slang word "furada", meaning a "jam" or tough situation, usually involving money. It is also common to hear Brazilian people say that prices on Brazilian Black Friday are "half of the double". However, currently, the term "Black Friday" has become so popular in the country that stores have been under closer scrutiny from consumers and cases of known scams have been reduced greatly.
Instances of violence and chaos on Black Friday
Despite frequent attempts to control the crowds of shoppers, minor injuries are common among the crowds, usually as a result of being pushed or thrown to the ground in small stampedes. While most injuries remain minor, serious injuries and even deliberate violence have taken place on some Black Fridays.
In 2008, a crowd of approximately 2,000 shoppers in Valley Stream, New York, waited outside for the 05:00 opening of the local Wal-Mart. As opening time approached, the crowd grew anxious and when the doors were opened, the crowd pushed forward, breaking the door down, and 34-year-old employee Jdimytai Damour was trampled to death. The shoppers did not appear concerned with the victim's fate, expressing refusal to halt their stampede when other employees attempted to intervene and help the injured employee, complaining that they had been waiting in the cold and were not willing to wait any longer. Shoppers had begun assembling as early as 21:00 the evening before. Even when police arrived and attempted to render aid to the injured man, shoppers continued to pour in, shoving and pushing the officers as they made their way into the store. Several other people incurred minor injuries, including a pregnant woman who had to be taken to the hospital. The incident may be the first case of a death occurring during Black Friday sales; according to the National Retail Federation, "We are not aware of any other circumstances where a retail employee has died working on the day after Thanksgiving."
On the same day, two people were fatally shot during an altercation at a Toys 'R' Us in Palm Desert, California.
During Black Friday 2010, a Madison, Wisconsin woman was arrested outside of a Toys 'R' Us store after cutting in line, and threatening to shoot other shoppers who tried to object. A Toys for Tots volunteer in Georgia was stabbed by a shoplifter. An Indianapolis woman was arrested after causing a disturbance by arguing with other Wal-Mart shoppers. She had been asked to leave the store, but refused.
A man was arrested at a Florida Wal-Mart on drug and weapons charges after other shoppers waiting in line for the store to open noticed he was carrying a handgun and reported it to police. He was discovered to also be carrying two knives and a pepper spray grenade. A man in Buffalo, New York, was trampled when doors opened at a Target store and unruly shoppers rushed in, in an episode reminiscent of the deadly 2008 Wal-Mart stampede.
On Black Friday 2011, a woman at a Porter Ranch, CaliforniaWalmart used pepper spray on fellow shoppers, causing minor injuries to a reported 20 people who had been waiting hours for the store to open. The incident started as people waited in line for the newly discounted Xbox 360. A witness said a woman with two children in tow became upset with the way people were pushing in line. The witness said she pulled out pepper spray and sprayed the other people in line. Another account stated: "The store had brought out a crate of discounted Xbox 360s, and a crowd had formed to wait for the unwrapping, when the woman began spraying people 'in order to get an advantage,' according to the police. In an incident outside a Walmart store in San Leandro, California, one man was wounded after being shot following Black Friday shopping at about 1:45 a.m. A 61-year-old pharmacist collapsed and was left for dead by shoppers while being trampled and passed by a stampede. He died soon after from his injuries.
On Black Friday 2012, two people were shot outside a Wal-Mart in Tallahassee, Florida, during a dispute over a parking space.
On Black Friday in 2013, a person in Las Vegas who was carrying a big-screen TV home from a Target store on Thanksgiving was shot in the leg as he tried to wrestle the item back from a robber who had just stolen it from him at gunpoint. In Romeoville, Illinois, a police officer shot a suspected shoplifter driving a car that was dragging a fellow officer at a Kohl's department store. The suspect and the dragged officer were treated for shoulder injuries. Three people were arrested. In another situation, a 29-year-old shopper was arrested in a Walmart in New Jersey after arguing with a store manager about a TV and attacking an officer. He was charged with disorderly conduct, aggravated assault, and resisting arrest
In 2014, three buyers were arrested after a group of five people started fighting at a Kohl's store in Tustin, California. Two female victims were found with facial lacerations, and one of them was taken to hospital with minor injuries, while the other was released on scene. According to officials, three other females were suspects for the assault and were taken into custody. Two people were arrested after a brawl on Black Friday at a northwest side mall in Indianapolis. In Los Angeles, two women were fighting at a Walmart in Norwalk, California, over a Barbie doll on Thanksgiving night.
Several people fighting at a mall in Florence, Kentucky, allegedly over a pair of Air Jordan sneakers. This year was called "The worst Black Friday brawls in history" at that time due to the heavy use of smartphones that could instantly capture video.
In 2016, 21-year-old Demond Cottman was shot and killed around 01:00 Friday morning outside a Macy's store in New Jersey. The shooter fired multiple shots, leaving an SUV covered in bullet holes, but the motives remain unclear. Cottman's 26-year-old brother was also injured. A shooting at the Wolfchase Galleria Mall in Memphis, Tennessee, left one man injured. Derrick Blackburn, 19, was later arrested for unlawful possession of a weapon.
See also: Shooting of Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford Jr.
At the Riverchase Galleria in Hoover, Alabama, Emantic Fitzgerald Bradford Jr., was shot and killed by a security guard after two people were wounded in a shooting. On Saturday, the police announced that the shooter was not Bradford, but he was involved in the shooting.
A fight led to a shooting in the food court of the Destiny USA mall in Syracuse, New York. The mall went into lockdown until shoppers and staff were released starting at about 8:00pm with all shopping activity suspended. 21-year-old Kyree Truax was arrested and charged with second-degree assault, second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, and second-degree reckless endangerment for shooting the victim twice in the leg.
Black Friday online
Main article: Cyber Black Friday
High traffic challenges for retailers
Some online stores invest a lot of money in promotional campaigns to generate more sales and drive traffic to their stores. However, they often forget about the high loads their sites are going to experience. According to Retail Gazette, "A number of major retailers' websites went down as they failed to cope with the surge in Black Friday traffic in 2017 ... This just highlights that some retailers have not taken the necessary steps to prepare for Black Friday. Failing to prepare for peak can cause poor performance, site downtime, and ultimately lost revenue for retailers". Such carelessness results in huge reputational damage. Moreover, The 2017 Veeam Availability Report shows that "Unplanned downtime costs organisations around the world an average of R270m annually, up from the R210m of the previous year".
Advertising tip sites
Some websites offer information about day-after-Thanksgiving specials up to a month in advance. The text listings of items and prices are usually accompanied by pictures of the actual ad circulars. These are either leaked by insiders or intentionally released by large retailers to give consumers insight and allow them time to plan.
In recent years, some retailers (including Walmart, Target, OfficeMax, Big Lots, and Staples) have claimed that the advertisements they send in advance of Black Friday and the prices included in those advertisements are copyrighted and are trade secrets.
Some of these retailers have used the take-down system of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act as a means to remove the offending price listings. This policy may come from the fear that competitors will slash prices, and shoppers may comparison shop. The actual validity of the claim that prices form a protected work of authorship is uncertain as the prices themselves (though not the advertisements) might be considered a fact in which case they would not receive the same level of protection as a copyrighted work.[original research?]
The benefit of threatening Internet sites with a DMCA based lawsuit has proved tenuous at best. While some sites have complied with the requests, others have either ignored the threats or simply continued to post the information under the name of a similar-sounding fictional retailer. However, careful timing may mitigate the take-down notice. An Internet service provider in 2003 brought suit against Best Buy, Kohl's, and Target Corporation, arguing that the take-down notice provisions of the DMCA are unconstitutional. The court dismissed the case, ruling that only the third-party posters of the advertisements, and not the ISP itself, would have standing to sue the retailers.
Usage of Black Friday Advertising Tip sites and buying direct varies by state in the U.S., influenced in large part by differences in shipping costs and whether a state has a sales tax. However, in recent years, the convenience of online shopping has increased the number of cross-border shoppers seeking bargains from outside of the U.S., especially from Canada. Statistics Canada indicates that online cross-border shopping by Canadians has increased by about 300M a year since 2002. The complex nature of additional fees such as taxes, duties and brokerage can make calculating the final cost of cross-border Black Friday deals difficult. Cross-border shopping solutions exist to mitigate the problem through estimation of the various cost involved.
In 2019, Adobe shopping data showed that around 39% of the shopping was done through smartphones.
Main article: Cyber Monday
The term Cyber Monday, a neologism invented in 2005 by the National Retail Federation's division Shop.org, refers to the Monday immediately following Black Friday based on a trend that retailers began to recognize in 2003 and 2004. Retailers noticed that many consumers, who were too busy to shop over the Thanksgiving weekend or did not find what they were looking for, shopped for bargains online that Monday from home or work. In 2010, Hitwise reported:
Thanksgiving weekend offered a strong start, especially as Black Friday sales continued to grow in popularity. For the 2nd consecutive year, Black Friday was the highest day for retail traffic during the holiday season, followed by Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. The highest year-over-year increases in visits took place on Cyber Monday and Black Friday with growth of 16% and 13%, respectively.
In 2013, Cyber Monday online sales grew by 18% over the previous year, hitting a record $1.73 billion, with an average order value of $128. In 2014, Cyber Monday was the busiest day of the year with sales exceeding $2 billion in desktop online spending, up 17% from the previous year.
As reported in the Forbes "Entrepreneurs" column on December 3, 2013: "Cyber Monday, the online counterpart to Black Friday, has been gaining unprecedented popularity—to the point where Cyber Sales are continuing on throughout the week." Peter Greenberg, Travel Editor for CBS News, further advises: "If you want a real deal on Black Friday, stay away from the mall. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are all part of Cyber Week ..."
Retail sales impact
The National Retail Federation releases figures on the sales for each Thanksgiving weekend. The Federation's definition of "Black Friday weekend" includes Thursday, Friday, Saturday and projected spending for Sunday. The survey estimates number of shoppers, not number of people.
The length of the shopping season is not the same across all years: the date for Black Friday varies between November 23 and 29, while Christmas Eve is fixed at December 24.
|Year||Date||Survey published||Shoppers (millions)||Average spent||Total spent||Consumers polled||Margin for error|
|2017||Nov 24||Nov 28||174||$335.47||$58.3 billion||3,242||± 1.7%|
|2014||Nov 28||Nov 30||233||$380.95||$50.9 billion||4,631||± 1.5%|
|2013||Nov 29||Dec 1||249||$407.02||$57.4 billion||4,864||± 1.7%|
|2012||Nov 23||Nov 25||247||$423.66||$59.1 billion||4,005||± 1.6%|
|2011||Nov 25||Nov 27||226||$398.62||$52.5 billion||3,826||± 1.6%|
|2010||Nov 26||Nov 28||212||$365.34||$45.0 billion||4,306||± 1.5%|
|2009||Nov 27||Nov 29||195||$343.31||$41.2 billion||4,985||± 1.4%|
|2008||Nov 28||Nov 30||172||$372.57||$41.0 billion||3,370||± 1.7%|
|2007||Nov 23||Nov 25||147||$347.55||$34.6 billion||2,395||± 1.5%|
|2006||Nov 24||Nov 26||140||$360.15||$34.4 billion||3,090||± 1.5%|
|2005||Nov 25||Nov 27||132||$301.81||$26.8 billion|
These are various day-long events similar to Black Friday around the world or any other events on the same day as Black Friday.
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Walmart Business Hours
Walmart is the largest retailer throughout the world. The company operates more than 11,000 stores in 27 countries. More than 2 million “associates” work for Walmart, under 69 banners. As a global leader in retail, the company currently has assets exceeding $400 billion. Walmart is open every day, except select holidays.
Walmart Regular Business Hours
- Weekdays: The customer service department is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week through the online feedback form. If you want to call the customer service department at the Home Office, you can call, 8am to 5pm, CST. In the event you want to reach out to the customer service department at the store level, you will need to call between 7am and 11pm.
- Weekends: You can contact the customer service department at the store level 7am to 11pm, CST. The customer service department at Home Office is not available on the weekends. You have the opportunity to connect with the customer service department through the online customer feedback form 24 hours a day.
Walmart Holiday Hours
The only major holiday Walmart closes is Christmas. On Christmas Eve, Walmart closes at 8pm, local time. Additional holidays where Walmart limits holiday hours include:
- New Years Day
Walmart Special Event Hours
Each year, Walmart holds a special event the day after Thanksgiving. The hours of the event start at 5am and last until the store closes for the day. Within the past few years, the special event hours started at 5pm on Thanksgiving, local time.
Contacting Walmart to Verify Business Hours
- Phone Number: Customers can contact the customer service department at 1-800-925-6278. You can contact the financial services department at 1-877-294-7880. The business card services is available at 1-877-294-1086. The gift card services department is available at 1-888-537-5503. The pharmacy department is available at 1-800-273-3455.
- Email Contact: You can send an email to the customer service department [+]and ask questions relating to store operations or voice concerns about products or services.
- Mail: Customers can send questions or concerns to the customer service department at Walmart Home Office 702 SW 8th Street Bentonville, AK 72716-8611.
- Social Media: Customers can reach out to the customer service department through social media. Connect with a customer service agent on Facebook [+], Twitter [+], Google+ [+], Pinterest [+]or YouTube [+].