As the final countdown to Black Friday 2017 begins, Stephanie Smith goes in search of the best deals in town.
First rule of Black Friday bargain grabbing? Keep a cool head. Second rule? Do your research.
Year on year, we are increasing how much we spend on Black Friday deals. Last year, UK shoppers spent £5.8bn during the big bonanza sales weekend – up 15 per cent on 2015.
Black Friday started in America, scheduled for the day after Thanksgiving (which is always the fourth Thursday in November), when retailers would knock down prices to kickstart the Christmas shopping period.
Where the US leads, we love to follow, and the UK has taken to Black Friday sales bagging with enthusiasm, both in stores and online.
If shopping in the city centre, set off early, expect lots of traffic and much pressure on parking, and also lengthy queues outside shops, so plan your shopping route. There will be high traffic on websites, too.
Decide what you want first (make a list) and also how much you want to spend in total. It’s all too easy to lose your head when you feel you are competing with fellow shoppers for the best deals, leaving you out of pocket, and with goods you don’t actually want in the cold light of day.
Many deals appear online as soon as the store sales begin, but some shops and websites have already revealed their Black Friday sales and some have already started with their offer, turning Black Friday into a week or more of bargains.
Most bargains will appear on major retail websites at midnight, while many High Street retailers will open at 6am.
John Lewis, Currys and Argos are among retailers expected to be more competitive than ever on prices this year than ever.
John Lewis says: “Our price promise in action means that even during our Black Friday event we’ll be checking and responding to competitors’ promotions and prices, so it’s worth taking a look online from time to time to see what’s new in our Black Friday offers.”
The store confirms that if customers see the offer on its website, it will honour it in their stores too.
Harvey Nichols will offer 25 per cent off Fashion, Accessories, Sunglasses and Shoes and 10 per cent off Beauty in store from Friday, November 24 to Monday, November 27. It doesn’t apply to spring/summer ‘18 stock and there are some brand exclusions.
With Marks & Spencer, you need to look out for offers launching from now until Cyber Monday on the Marks and Spencer Black Friday deals page. Sign up to the newsletter in the field on the bottom of the website, or opt into SMS updates, to get all the latest information direct to your inbox or mobile.
Victoria Leeds has the following offers, subject to availability and individual stores’ terms and conditions. Most of these deals and timings reflect the individual retailers’ own offer at all their stores across the UK, not just Victoria Quarter and Victoria Gate.
AZENDI: Offers on selected sterling jewellery, November 24 - 26.
BERRY’S JEWELLERS: 20 per cent off Berry’s jewellery. November 24 only.
CALVIN KLEIN: 20 per cent off. November 24- 27.
DIESEL: 30 per cent off selected items. November 24 - 27.
FRENCH CONNECTION: Up to 50 per cent off. Now to November 27.
GANT: 20 per cent off shirts and selected lines. November 24-27.
HAWES & CURTIS: Offers throughout the week until November 27.
ILLAMASQUA: Up to 70 per cent off until November 27.
JOHN LEWIS: Many deals including GHD in John Lewis - 30 per cent off selected GHD electricals, products and brushes. November 24 only.
JOULES: Up to 50 per cent off, now until November 28.
KAREN MILLEN: 25 per cent off everything, now to November 27.
KIEHL’S: 20 per cent off, November 24- 25.
LE CREUSET: Offers throughout the store, November 24 - 27.
NEOM ORGANICS LONDON: Three offers over sic days... find out more in store.
NESPRESSO: Purchase 150 coffee capsules and get the Nespresso Inissia machine for £59.99 with a free Aeroccino 3 Milk Frother in black. Now to November 27.
OLIVER SWEENEY: 20 per cent off, now to November 28. Cobbler’s Pick each day - check in store for details.
PENHALIGON’S: Two Kristjiana Williams Christmas baubles with a minimum spend of £120. Now 23 - 27.
T.M.LEWIN: 20 per cent off everything including multibuys, now to November 26.
T2: Buy two teas and receive the third free. Valid only on gift cubes. November 23 - 27.
THE WHITE COMPANY: 20 per cent off. Now to November - 27.
THOMAS SABO: 70 per cent off a selection of jewellery, watches and exclusive sets. November 24- 27.
TOMMY HILFIGER: 20 per cent off. November 23 - 27.
WHISTLES: 25 per cent off, now to November 29.
Finally at Boots across Yorkshire, online and in store, No7 Black Friday deals run from this Friday until November 30. So No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Body Serum (combining nourishing Argan oil and moisture locking Hyaluronic Acid), was £25, will be £12; No7 Beautiful Skin Cleansing Brush (which gently exfoliates and deeply cleanses the skin, in less than 60 seconds, was £25, will be £14; No7 Instant Illusions Airbrush Away Primer (which puts fine lines, wrinkles, uneven skin tone and pores in to soft focus) was £16.50, will be £10; No7 Core Collection Brush Set (contains Foundation Brush, Concealer Brush, Eye Colour Brush and Blusher Brush) was £23, will be £15.