holiday shopping

Stores & Shoppers Gear Up for Black Friday Shopping

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With Thanksgiving mostly finished except for the leftovers, it’s time for many to think about shopping.

This year concerns about inflation do not appear to be slowing people down.

Though it might have some hunting harder for a bargain.

“Great sales, best time of year to shop. So that’s why I had to stop in and get a couple of things,” said Celina Rogers of Wethersfield.

Rogers was among shoppers in the U.S. expected to spend up to $960-billion on holiday spending this year.

There were joyful spirits despite some worries about inflation.

“Have to be a little more strategic, look for those sales a little bit harder. And just watch my bank account always. It’s going to be a tough year,” said Rogers.

Amid concerns about higher prices and availability of items, holiday shopping kicked off earlier this year according to the National Retail Federation.

“We’ve already seen an increase in sales this holiday season,” said Amanda Sirica, Westfarms spokesperson.

Sirica tells us stores have plenty of merchandise.

With the mall closed on Thanksgiving, stores planned to roll out deals and specials on Black Friday.

Though even before people could already find deep discounts, as much as 50 percent off or more.

“Black Friday isn’t that one day shopping frenzy that we used to see. Now it’s a Black Friday season. I’ve even heard someone call it Black November,” said Sirica.

Estimates are about 166 million people plan to shop from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday.

On the most popular day – Black Friday – Westfarms will open at six in the morning, The Shoppes at Buckland Hills at eight and then seven for the Meriden Mall and the Connecticut Post Mall.

The average shopper will fork over more than $800 on gifts and holiday items.

Though for many the presents are not the most important part of the season.

“You have to focus on the other things. Been through some tough years coming up to this point and that’s the important part to focus on making it past that,” said Rogers.

Because this year Christmas falls on a Sunday that means four more days of shopping past Thanksgiving and an extra Saturday compared to last year.

That’s good news for last minute shoppers and stores.

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