On almost any day of the year, consumers can shop around, compare sale prices and ask one retailer to match a lower price at another retailer.
Black Friday is usually an exception to that rule.
When price matching isn’t an option, cash-back websites, apps and credit cards can still ensure you’re getting a good Black Friday deal.
Price matching exclusions
In most cases, you won’t be able to price match on Black Friday — or the days surrounding it.
Here are a couple of examples of store policies that exclude the day after Thanksgiving:
- Best Buy: Price match will not apply to offers or items for sale between the Sunday before Thanksgiving (Nov. 24) and the Monday after Thanksgiving (Dec. 2) — whether offered by Best Buy BBY, +2.22% or a competitor.
- Target: From Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28, through Dec. 7, Target TGT, -1.44% won’t accept price matches and adjustments to competitors.
But just in case the store you’re shopping at is an outlier, always read the price matching policy before you hit the stores.
With price matching largely out, finding other ways to save becomes even more important.
First, scope out the deals before you shop on Black Friday (or Thanksgiving). Most retailers release their ads ahead of time, so you’ll know which items will be on sale and how much they’ll cost.
Once you decide what you’ll buy and where you’ll shop, use cash-back websites, apps and credit cards. If you do, you could get money back after you shop — almost like an additional sale on top of that already low Black Friday price.
Here are three ways to earn cash back on qualifying purchases:
- Websites. Become a member of cash-back shopping sites like Rakuten and BeFrugal to get money back when you shop at qualifying retailers. After signing up, you’ll need to click a link on the cash-back site before you visit the retailer’s site to place an order online. Once you earn enough cash, you can choose to get paid via methods such as check or PayPal PYPL, +2.63% credit.
- Apps. Check apps for cash-back offers at eligible stores. With some, you can add a deal and then take a picture of your receipt to get a rebate after you purchase the item.
- Credit cards. Cash-back credit cards can accrue rewards, too. If you’re disciplined enough to pay off the balance when the statement comes, using a credit card for items you were going to buy anyway can be a savvy holiday shopping strategy.
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Courtney Jespersen is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: email@example.com. Twitter: @CourtneyNerd.