Shoppers look for Black Friday deals on Thanksgiving

Some of the biggest sales of the year are going on now as several stores in Austin started offering Black Friday deals on Thanksgiving.

Stores like Sears in Barton Creek Mall open at midnight and then close for five hours before opening again on Black Friday.

Shoppers looking for those deals may have noticed that they didn't have to fight their way through crowds like they may have done in years past.

Mohmin Khan was one of those shoppers. She knows that if you're hoping to find the deals you have to be willing to wait. She was in line at JC Penney and joined about 1,000 people who were waiting for the store to open at 3 p.m.

Khan says she waited about 45 minutes and that the line "went all the way around the whole building almost."

Annette Hill was also there and says, "People were pushing and shoving but overall you know I got my deals.

It was a similar scene at a Toys R Us although staff there used a different system. They passed out tickets to those in line so they didn't have to race through the aisles.

Even with the tickets, Kendalyn Brown believes the crowds just aren't what they used to be thanks in part to the popularity of the internet.

"I do believe more people are buying stuff online. It's more convenient. You don't have to deal with the waiting. You don't have to deal with the crowds. I think it's a lot more convenient to buy online but a lot of these deals are in store only," Brown says.

Hill says she'd consider changing the way she shops. "I would do the online thing for sure. no more going into the store on Black Friday for me."

But are the low in store prices enough to make spending Thanksgiving away from home worth it?

Khan says, "I just can't go home and celebrate Thanksgiving on my own so we have to come in here and waste it in here."

Hill says it is "as long as you spend family time with your family and eat and then relax and then go out and shop." 

Professional Black Friday shoppers said the one thing everyone should bring with them to the store is a priority list.
“You just figure out what you need the most and go for that,” Brown said.  

Several major retailers decided not to open at all on the holiday. In fact, more than 35 of them said they would rather their employees spend the day with family.


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