In the News: Shop Smart, Shop Safe

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With the holidays approaching many people are starting their shopping. Next week comes one of the busiest shopping days of the year: Black Friday. Plus pre-Thanksgiving sales, Cyber Monday, and all the other holiday sales make this time of year a little hectic when it comes to finding the perfect gift. With some of the economic challenges people are facing this year, finding the best bang for the buck is even more important. So take a break and check out the history behind Black Friday and some tips and tricks you can use to find the best deals and to keep yourself safe as you shop for your loved ones this year.

NEW! Why is it called Black Friday?

http://useconomy.about.com/od/demand/f/Black_Friday_Name.htm

Black Friday got its name originally because of the car accidents and violence that took place as the crowds rushed for the sales. Stores didn’t want the day associated with something so negative so they changed it to represent the way the sales would help get them back in the “black” financially speaking.

The History of Black Friday (find it on the ipl2)

http://blackfriday.com/pages/black-friday-history

Find out more about Black Friday on this site devoted to the day and everything surrounding it. Learn more about when it started, who coined the phrase, and why it’s become something shoppers look forward to almost as much as Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Personal Safety Plan for Black Friday (find it on the ipl2)

http://www.ncpc.org/about/news/you-need-a-personal-safety-plan-for-black-friday

The National Crime Prevention Center offers tips to keep you safe if you go out to face the crowds on Black Friday. These ideas will help you make a plan ahead of time and keep you, your money, and others around you safe. Remembering to take your time, not carry more than you can, and being aware of your surroundings are just a few of the tips offered to make your shopping more enjoyable and less stressful.

Black Friday Ads and Shopping (find it on the ipl2)

http://blackfriday.com/

This site gathers all the sales and information you need to make your strategy for Black Friday shopping. Browse the ads ahead of time, find out special shopping times, and learn any restrictions you need to know before you head out the door.

Tips: Safe Online Shopping (find it on the ipl2)

http://www.safeshopping.org/tips.shtml

Because of the crowds and the craziness you might prefer to shop from the comfort of your home. This site offers practical advice and tips on how to protect yourself as you shop. Valuable suggestions on how to tell if a website is secure to shop on and reminders to trust your instincts are just a couple of the tips that can help you have a safe and enjoyable shopping experience, even on the web.

Cyber Monday Ads and Shopping NEW!

http://www.cybermonday.com/

With the advent of online shopping, stores decided to get in on the shopping frenzy of Black Friday and extend special deals that would be available only online on the Monday after Thanksgiving. This site will give you tips on all of the deals to watch for on Cyber Monday. Plus they offer the inside scoop on online deals all throughout the year.

Better Business Bureau Consumer Tips (find it on the ipl2)

http://www.bbb.org/us/consumers/

The Better Business Bureau offers plenty of tips on how to shop online safely. They offer suggestions on how to avoid scams, lists of reliable sites, and ratings on specific businesses to help you make better choices. There are a lot of useful links and articles to help you stay safe while shopping all year long.

NEW! Shopping Tips and Tricks

http://shoppingtipsandtricks.com/

This blog is updated regularly and is focused on helping you find the best deals. There are regular pages of links to places you can find coupons or ads, information about freebies, and other sites you might find useful. Plus, the author posts about special promotions as she finds them.

National Retail Federation (find it on the ipl2)

http://www.nrf.com/modules.php?name=News&id=615

This site gives you all the news you could want about past and present shopping trends around the holiday season. Get statistics, articles, and information about Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It will help you check out what’s big this year or look at what happened last year at this time.

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