Prime Day vs Black Friday: When Should You Do Your Holiday Shopping?

amazon prime day boxes
Advertisement
Advertisement

Every year we wonder whether we should shop on Prime Day vs Black Friday, and which will offer the best deals. Well this year, the question is even more important, as Prime Day has been pushed back to mid-October, about five to six weeks ahead of Black Friday (and Cyber Monday).

So which shopping holiday should you spend your money during?

When is Prime Day?

Prime Day is happening on October 13 and 14 this year. That's nearly three months later than it normally occurs. It's once again a 48-hour event, where Amazon is discounting thousands (if not millions) of items on its site, for Prime members.

Advertisement

We have even started seeing deals for Prime Day ahead of Prime Day, which you can see here.

HP BlackFriday 2018 2
Black Friday Sales

When is Black Friday?

Black Friday is always the Friday after Thanksgiving. And this year, that happens to fall on November 27.

Typically, we see Black Friday deals come out as soon as a week before Black Friday. However, this year, it's going to be a bit different, as it is likely going to be entirely online. In previous years, Black Friday has offered better deals in-store. But with social distancing and the global pandemic, a lot of stores have already announced that they will be closed on Thanksgiving and on Black Friday. That's probably better for everyone involved – customers and employees – as Black Friday can be very hectic.

Advertisement

Black Friday is technically just one day, but it usually lasts through the following Monday, which is called Cyber Monday. Cyber Monday typically has leftover deals from Black Friday, and a small number of new ones available too.

What deals can we expect on Prime Day?

Companies as well as Amazon, have already started to announce their Prime Day deals for October 13-14. So here's what you can expect for deals on Prime Day.

We will see some steep discounts on robot vacuums, Instant Pots, smartphones, tablets, TVs, and more. If you're looking to get some of Amazon's newer hardware that it announced last month, you can likely save big on those new products during Prime Day as well. Including the new Fire TV Stick Lite, which was already pretty cheap.

Advertisement

Amazon isn't the only retailer discounting products on Prime Day either. Other retailers like Target, Walmart and Best Buy have already announced that they will be discounting a number of items during Prime Day, under their own sale name. Amazon does also do price matching, so you can likely get even more deals from Amazon on Prime Day thanks to that.

Do I have to be a Prime member to take advantage of Prime Day?

Yes and no. To take advantage of the majority of deals on Prime Day, you will need to be an Amazon Prime member. And you can sign up for a free 30-day trial by clicking here.

But, not all deals available on Prime Day will be for Prime only. For example, we know of a handful of deals already that will be available to any Amazon customer – Prime or not. But you will also get the slower shipping times. So if you are buying anything that you want to receive in a decent amount of time, you'll want to sign up for Prime.

Advertisement

There is a 30-day trial for everyone, and six months if you're a student. Otherwise, it'll cost you $12.99 per month of $119 for the whole year.

Are there still delays on shipping from Amazon?

For the most part, Amazon has fixed their shipping delays that we saw earlier this year when the pandemic first hit. Most items are shipping within a day of your order.

What we are really seeing a lot of from Amazon though, is under-promising and over-delivering on products. For instance, it'll say that this particular product will arrive on Friday, but it might actually arrive a day or two early. Lately, none of my orders have come on the day Amazon stated. They usually come a day (sometimes two days) before. Which is a good way to do customer service.

Advertisement

Now there are still some products that are back-ordered. Things like webcams, laptops, desktops, monitors, and such, that people are buying for their home office. But for the most part, everything is shipping right away. That could change in the days after Prime Day though.

Samsung Galaxy S20 plus AM AH 5
Samsung Galaxy S20

What deals can we expect on Black Friday?

Hardly any retailers have released Black Friday circulars yet, but that will change pretty soon. So we don't really know any specific deals to expect for Black Friday, yet.

But we are expecting to see some of the last sales and discounts on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One series consoles. As the new models are launching just ahead of Black Friday – but will be sold out for months anyways.

Advertisement

Typically, Black Friday is the second best time of the year to get a new TV – the other being around the Super Bowl in February. So if you are looking to grab a new TV for your home, then Black Friday is likely the better time to grab one (vs Prime Day).

Tech in general, is discounted pretty heavily on Black Friday. But you'll also see sales on streaming services and other services that can save you a good chunk of cash. For example, last year, Disney+ was on sale for $59.99 ($10 off of its annual yearly rate) for a year. And with the streaming wars heating up right now, you can expect plenty of other services adding discounts, to get new subscribers.

Outside of tech, you'll also find deals on kitchen appliances big and small. As well as clothing, pet supplies and much more. It's going to be tougher to find something not on sale for Black Friday than something that is.

Advertisement

But typically, tech is discounted the heaviest on Black Friday. With TVs leading the way.

Will there be in-store shopping on Black Friday this year?

We've already heard from a handful of retailers that they will be closed on Thanksgiving and likely on Black Friday too. Which means that there is even less reason to shop in-store this year on Black Friday. This is great news for employees as they can stay at home with their families. And it makes it easier to find deals, as you can just visit their site, instead of camping out overnight.

We'd expect to see many more retailers close their doors on Thanksgiving and Black Friday this year. Especially since the pandemic is showing no signs of slowing down. Social Distancing would be pretty much impossible to do on Black Friday, especially when doors open. Never mind those that refuse to wear masks.

This year, you will likely be able to get the same deals online as you would in-store. So stay home, grab a cup of coffee and start shopping on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Deals will likely still start that Wednesday before Thanksgiving though.

Will deals be better this year, due to the pandemic?

Deals are likely to be even better this year, due to the pandemic. Now that might sound odd, since stores have been struggling to keep stuff in stock – especially toilet paper, webcams, laptops, etc.

But where a lot of the brick and mortar stores have been closed for around six months now, or open a limited capacity, they haven't been making much money. Which means they are going to discount products even more than usual, to sell more. Which drives in more money. This is going to be especially true for stores like Best Buy and Micro Center. Who don't also sell groceries – like Walmart and Target –  as those stores are likely fine.

In addition to these stores being closed for large parts of the year, many consumers don't have a lot of money to spend. Over 60 million people were unemployed for a large portion of the year. Which means they aren't going to be buying a bunch of stuff they don't need. So retailers need to lower prices to levels that will make them buy.

While we don't know for sure, we could end up seeing some pretty incredible deals for Black Friday and throughout the holiday season this year.

What about Cyber Monday?

Traditionally, Black Friday has been the holiday where you shop in-store and Cyber Monday was all online. This was mostly because most people have that Friday off, but are back to work on that Monday. Though in recent years, both holidays have been mostly online. And there hasn't been much to differentiate the two.

We've noticed in the past five years that Cyber Monday is basically leftover deals from Black Friday. There are some new deals for Cyber Monday only, but for the most part, they are deals that lasted all weekend through til Cyber Monday.

You may see a handful of new deals on Cyber Monday that might be better than Black Friday, but as a whole, you won't see a lot of great deals on Cyber Monday. Which is rather unfortunate.

After Cyber Monday, you'll see retailers move to their more traditional holiday shopping deals. Where you may occasionally see something discounted at 50%, but it'll mostly be between 20 and 30%.

This year, you'll have a bit more time between Black Friday/Cyber Monday and Christmas though, with 29 shopping days between Black Friday and Christmas. But the longer you wait, the worse the deals will be. The early bird gets the worm when it comes to holiday shopping deals.

Should I shop on Prime Day or wait for Black Friday?

It's really hard to say which shopping holiday is the better one for you to shop. Black Friday typically has more deals at more retailers, but Prime Day has faster shipping (before the rush of holiday shopping), so you can get your items sooner.

The best piece of advice we have, is to make a list. Make a list of what you want and/or need to buy during these holidays. That includes making a list of what you're buying everyone for Christmas (and other holidays) this year. It doesn't hurt to start your holiday shopping early, especially since you likely won't see most of the people on your list this year, due to the pandemic.

Use your list during Prime Day and make your purchases. Unfortunately we can't say that while a TV might look like a really good deal on Prime Day, it won't be discounted further on Black Friday. So you kind of have to take your chances there. But, remember that Amazon does offer a 30-day return window. So if a Black Friday sale is announced, with a lower price than what you paid, you can return it. Unfortunately, the 30 days would be up before Black Friday comes around.

If you're a Prime Member, you may want to do your holiday shopping on a mixture of these two holidays.

AndroidHeadlines is here to help

As we do every year, and all year-long, AndroidHeadlines is here to help you out. We will help you decide what to buy this year for your friends and family, as well as finding the best deals on Prime Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Make sure you follow us to get the latest deals, and check out our deal roundups as well. So you don't miss any of the good deals and don't end up spending more money then you need to.