Black friday shopping during COVID-19: Do’s and Don’ts

With the countdown of Black Friday getting closer, here are shopping tips to use during the COVID-19 holiday season.

Maddie Oliver, Chief Writer

As COVID-19 cases increase and the holidays draw near, people having to get creative with certain holiday traditions, one being Black Friday shopping. Shopping outlets in the Kansas City area, including Oak Park Mall, Town Center Plaza, Kansas City Plaza and The Legends have voiced their COVID-19 protocol with shopping on their websites, such as wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.
Having gone Black Friday shopping with her parents for as long as she could remember, senior Brynn Stasilius said she will be Black Friday shopping in person this year at Town Center Plaza and The Legends with her family. Since many people are opting to shop online, Stasilius said that she believes she will have a better shot of getting the products she wants in store.
“A lot of times, stores during Black Friday won’t have all of your size or something that you really liked is gone,” Stasilius said. “I [will] see more clothes that I want in store because it will be less picked over and I will have more options to pick from.”
Shopping online this year, junior Laasya Bonthu said that although sales might be an advantage in person, online shopping sites would have their biggest sales listed on the homepage, which would be easier to navigate. Due to the spread of COVID-19, Bonthu said she plans to shop online this year.
“My family is trying to be COVID safe and we [are avoiding] going in stores as much as possible since it can be a risk with many people going in and out,” Bonthu said. “So even if it is cheaper to shop in person, we would rather stay home and pay more money to avoid any potential risks.”
Whether shopping in person or online, here are some tips to have the best Black Friday shopping experience.

Tips for shopping:
1. Wear a mask. All stores will be requiring you to wear masks and follow social distancing protocol. You must wear a mask whilst shopping because of the Johnson County mask requirements for retail establishments. Stores are able to deny entry to anyone unmasked.
2. Bring hand sanitizer. If shopping in person, there will be many people touching and handling the items you will want to buy. Constantly apply hand sanitizer and be hygienic, especially in public places that are full of germs.
3. Watch for deals. Many stores-in person and online will notify you when they are having sales (stores are spacing out deals for longer periods of time). Watch closely to ensure you get the items you want for a better price than originally.
4. Remember to enjoy this time of year. Despite being in a pandemic, remember to do whatever makes you feel comfortable and enjoy the entirety of this holiday season.