Holiday shopping set to top $730 billion


Today, millions of Americans hit the shops and search websites, to look for the best deals; retailers often continue their sales throughout the weekend, concluding with online-only offers on Cyber Monday.

The National Retail Federation estimates holiday retail sales in the United States in November and December will rake in as much as $730.7 billion, a 4.2% increase from a year ago.

If you don't use the app map, you can check for associate vests, signs and balloons that match the color of the sought-after item from the Black Friday ad to help navigate to the deals you're looking for.

As of 5 pm ET on Thanksgiving Day, shoppers had spent US$2.1 billion online, up 20.2 per cent on a year ago.

Schrager says online shopping hasn't diminished Black Friday's significance to the nation's brick-and-mortar retailers.

The stores will be open till 11 PM on Black Friday. It's held every year on the day after Thanksgiving.

With more holiday deals happening earlier to compensate for the late start, many have already started to shop.

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For two shoppers at Walmart, it was important to stop by the store in the afternoon, ahead of the evening sales, to scope out the deals.

Lastly, the firm said "mass merchants are likely to be the most preferred venue, followed by online retailers".

It has also been used by U.S. police, a result of the large unruly crowds and congested traffic experienced on the day.

"It's our bonding time", Berry said.

"There were definitely some concerns about prices due to what we see in the news about the trade war, but I haven't seen the impact yet", said Jay Smith, 28, who was shopping for clothes and toys at a Macy's (M.N) in Pentagon City, Virginia.

Channel 3's Christina Guessferd will be live from the University Mall in South Burlington to catch up with shoppers Friday morning. But even more spending is expected for later in the season. This year, Black Friday is on November 29th while Cyber Monday falls on December 2nd.

The sales usually last over the weekend, extending into what is known as Cyber Monday. According to an Adobe survey, one in 4 consumers plan to visit a physical store on Thanksgiving Day. She also said shoppers should be aware of ways to protect themselves during their shopping outings as well.