Black Friday is creeping up on us fast – it falls on Friday 24 November this year. Predictions about what will go on sale are coming in thick and fast and bargain hunters are ready and waiting for the discounts to drop.

It’s easy to get sucked into a bargain binge and spend way more than you intended to. Here are some top tips to make sure you make the most of your money…

1) Make a plan

Bristol has so many choices when it comes to shopping it can be a bit overwhelming if you don’t plan in advance. So, before you hit the shops make a list of what you want to buy. If it doesn’t make the list don’t let it make the basket! Be strict with yourself and only buy what you need to get.

2) Budget

It’s all well and good having a list of what you need to buy, but if everything on your list is really expensive it’s time to prioritise.

Work out how much you can afford to spend overall, then decide how much you could pay for each item. If you don’t find it for that price you might need to leave it for now. Remember, if you don’t need it before Christmas then the January sales will be in full swing in just over a month so if you can hang on you might get a better price.

3) Do your research

When you find the item you want to buy have a quick search around online to see if any other shops sell it for less. If you’re shopping online remember to factor in the cost of delivery. If two companies are selling at the same price, go for the one that offers the longest warranty.

4) Get the best price

Sign up to your favourite retailer’s newsletters as they’ll often send out exclusive discounts via email. Even if you’re out shopping in store, check whether you could get something cheaper online with added discounts. If you don’t need it for a few days it could save you a fair whack.

5) Spend smart

When you’re in store don’t be tempted to take out a store card with the promise of buy now pay later. These cards generally have sky high APRs which means if you don’t pay off the card fully at the end of the month you’ll be charged a huge amount of interest. You could instead use a 0% purchases card which lets you borrow interest free for an agreed number of months. But it’s only cost effective if you pay off your card by the end of your interest free period.

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