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Tips to Avoid Overspending on Black Friday

Written by: Kristy Welsh

SCOTTSDALE, AZ (November 22, 2010) - It's that time of the year - holiday shopping. No doubt you've seen some of the amazing pricing in the ads for "Black Friday" and are thinking they'd make great gifts! Are you planning to line up at 3AM to get what you want? Slow down! Are these "good deals" going to fit into your holiday budget?

"Many people get themselves into trouble by overspending during the holidays", says Kristy Welsh, editor of When those credit card statements come around in January, some people find themselves suffering a "credit card hangover". She has some tips for Black Friday shoppers to avoid getting too deep in debt:

Before You Head Off to the Store

  • Make a budget! How much can you afford to spend without pulling out your credit cards? If you are planning to pay with a credit card, can you pay off your purchases within 1 or 2?
  • Examine your gift list closely. Can you get by giving casual acquaintances or co-workers cards instead of gifts?
  • Decide the amount you want to spend on each person who makes the "cut" in your Christmas list. Make sure the total fits within the overall budget.
  • Have you considered inexpensive but personal gifts? Ideas include attractively wrapped home-baked goods, small photo albums with a summary of the past year's events and framed pictures of your family or children.
  • Comparison shop ahead of time. Most Black Friday prices are published in advance. If you're really planning on getting up at 3AM, make sure the store you hit has the lowest price.

While You Are Shopping

  • Avoid impulse purchases! If it isn't on your list or is not for a specific person, don't buy it.
  • Take a calculator with you while you shop so you know the "running total" on how much you have spent as you go along.

Founded in 1997, is a free one-stop destination for consumers looking for advice and tips on how to repair and rebuild bad credit and maintain good credit. Kristy Welsh is also the author of Good Credit Is Sexy, a tongue-in-cheek guide to managing your credit. Welsh is an advocate of showing readers everything they need to know to repair credit themselves, as many positive corrections can be made for the cost of a postage stamp.