Why you should start shopping early for the best Black Friday deals

Diehard bargain hunters and savvy Christmas shoppers are preparing to hit the shops – or the internet – for the annual Black Friday sales.

The November 23 event is set to make $320 million across the country as the event is the last big sale of 2018 before Boxing Day.

Westfield, Myer, David Jones and Chadstone Shopping Centre will have shoppers seeing up to 50 per cent off fashion, electronics, beauty and homewares from Friday.

But the US tradition, that was only brought to Australia in 2012, is foreign to some shoppers and leaves them unsure how to get the best deal or whether to hold off until after the holidays.

Here is your guide to the best Black Friday deals and expert tips on why to check online retailers early.

Australians are preparing to hit the shops for the annual Black Friday Sale this week. Photo: Getty

Where did Black Friday start?

For many shoppers across the country, Black Friday is an unfamiliar event for 25 per cent of Australians.

The sale is believed to have started in the US more than 60 years ago as the unofficial launch of Christmas shopping and falls the day after Thanksgiving.

The name is believed to have come from a police department who coined it after the shopping mayhem caused traffic accidents and even violence.

The event quickly gained popularity and morphed into a four-day event to include Cyber Monday.

Although it has been in Australia for six years now, almost a quarter of baby boomers and millennials have no idea what it is.

“Like Halloween and Thanksgiving celebrations, Black Friday is a tradition making its way to our shores,” Finder.com.au money expert Bessie Hassan said.

Do Australians actually make use of the sale?

While Black Friday is a major event, only one in five Australians are expected to use it to their advantage.

According to Ms Hassan, a recent survey found 44 per cent of Australian shoppers now prefer to buy items as they need them, rather than hold out for the sales.

Only 18 per cent of Western Australians plan to shop the sale compared to 24 per cent of consumers in South Australia. 

But the four-day event is still expected to rake in an estimated $320 million.

Chadstone Shopping Centre had more than 200 retailers included in its Black Friday sale. Photo: Supplied

What retailers kick off the sale early?

While the sale officially starts on Friday, many websites kick off a few days before so it is worth checking beforehand.

Fashion and sports retailer The Iconic launched its Black Friday sale on Tuesday with 30 per cent off brands – including Ray-Ban, Nike, Calvin Klein, R.M. Williams and 2XU.

Kogan launched its sale on Monday with new deals added daily from brands including Google, Apple and Dyson. 

Shoppers can pick up a Dyson V7 Cord-Free Vacuum Cleaner for $349, saving 41 per cent or an Amazon Kindle Paperwhite for $175 – a drop of $74.

Kogan is also selling an Apple iPhone X for 17 per cent less than usual at $1,299 and MacBook Airs for $1,249, saving $250.

Expert tricks for getting the best deals

Ms Hassan advises shoppers looking to make the most of Black Friday to start browsing now.

Jump online and check out your favourite sites, then start bookmarking or adding what you’d like to buy to your shopping cart,” she said.

“Once the sale starts, you can easily see if the goods on your wish list are reduced and quickly check out.”

Australians should also double check the items they are after actually ship to their door as its easy to accidentally jump on a US website that is limited in delivery.

Signing up earlier to retailers’ newsletters to be contacted when the sale is launched and double checking the return shipping costs for any loopholes are also top tips.

Myer and David Jones stores across the country will have impressive sales in store and online. Photo: Getty

Are the best sales in store or online?

The sale will cover a range of retailers in store and online, the ideal ways to shop will really depend on what the shopper is after.

For Victorians after a fashion deal, Chadstone Shopping Centre will be open from 9am until 9pm on Friday with more than 200 offers – six more than they offer on Boxing Day.

Sports store 2XU, shoe store Betts, Calvin Klein, Converse, Crocs, Kookai, Jacqui E and JD Sports will all have 30 per cent off selected items or storewide.

Chadstone will also have a ‘Black Friday Bar’ outside David Jones with a complimentary blackberry cocktail or mocktail for those who sign up to its membership.

David Jones stores across the country will have 30 per cent on all women’s swimwear from Jets, Milea, Togs and Bonds.

There will also be 50 per cent off Kitchenaid stand mixers and 30 per cent off children’s clothes from Indie Kids By Industrie, Rock Your Kid, Marlo and Bebe.

All Westfield centres across Australia will participate, with sales at shops including JB Hi-Fi, Priceline, Cotton On and OPSM.

“Great deals across fashion and beauty, along with homewares and electronics, will be on offer for our customers from tomorrow and right through the weekend, with most of our major retailers,” Westfield Regional Manager for Centre Experience Charlie Rimmer said.

Myer is yet to announce its Black Friday deals, but the Chadstone store will have personalised Toblerone chocolates for $9.99 at the Giftorium.

For Sydneysiders, optical retailer Vision Direct is offering a free pair of glasses valued at $100 to the first 50 people who book an eye test at the George Street store.

The retailer will also have 10 per cent off contact lenses and a flash sale of up to 90 per cent off glasses including Ray Ban, Celine, Tom Ford and Oakley.

When it comes to shopping for electronics online, popular sound brand Nura are offering headphones at a 20 per cent discount.

Vision Direct is offering free glasses to Sydneysiders who book an eye test (L) and Nura has 20 per cent off headphones (R). Photo: Supplied