Black Friday is happening on 23 November this year, and like many other American traditions, it’s been gaining popularity in South Africa.

According to Superbalist, search interest for the term “Black Friday” in South Africa is the highest in the world, which goes to show just how popular the event has become locally.

Retailers, both online and off, offer substantial discounts on a range of items, and it’s a great time for shoppers to stock up on essentials or to nab a long-awaited item at as much as 80% off. 

The three most popular categories of fashion sold on Superbalist last year were women’s shoes, tops and dresses – South African women were certainly shopping up a storm on Black Friday 2017. 

While traditionally Black Friday takes place on one day, several local stores offer a longer discount period, possibly to ensure they capture the buying power of those who get paid on the 25th. 

If you’re keen to catch the early discounts, or have your eye on a particular limited-edition item, then you’ll have to be ready when the sale kicks in. 

“Everyone shows up at our Johannesburg store when the doors open at 5am on the first day,” Moira Maré, Marketing Assistant at Via La Moda, told us.

“This year we’re running our Black Friday special a week late. Some sale items include a designer genuine Python snake handbag valued at R17 000, selling for less than R9 000 and you’ll find a genuine leather handbag with a value of over R4 000 selling for under R1 700.”   

READ MORE: Thinking about boarding the Black Friday sale train? Here's what you need to know

Anyone who has tried to take advantage of the discounts offered by online retailers like Takealot will know that site crashes are common, and that you need patience and flexibility to ensure you grab the bargain you’re after.

But key to a successful purchase on the day is cash. If you think you’re not going to manage to make it to Black Friday with the bank balance you need, we’re here to help you to get back in the game with five tips to save about R3600 over the next three weeks. 

South African financial coach Mapalo Makhu says it’s easier to stick to your budget if you have a goal that excites you. “Quite frankly, if your financial goal does not excite you, it gets harder to achieve it.” Black Friday offers some very exciting motivation to save.

So, here’s how much you could save in time for Black Friday. We aren’t saying it will be easy, but it will be worth it.

1. Give up good coffee (R550) 

The office canteen might offer DIY coffee that tastes like compost, but avoiding your local trendy barista will be so worth it when you realise you can save as much as R550! That’s right – just one R25 cappuccino a day will set you back close to R500 between now and the 23rd.

One of the most popular items sold during last year’s Black Friday Superbalist sale was the adidas Originals Superstar Foundation sneakers (R1 199) –  say no to takeaway coffee and they could be yours by the end of the month.

Adidas Originals Superstar Foundation

Adidas Originals Superstar Foundation, R1 199

2. Stop eating takeaway (R800)

Packing your own lunch for work every day sounds exhausting, and boring, but when you consider that even a well-priced Nando’s lunch will set you back around R50 you’ll rethink your options. Multiply that by the 14 weekdays left until sale day and you’re looking at a substantial R800 in savings. 
Financial coach Makhu says that if you can avoid the temptation of instant gratification you are certain to derive benefit in the future. 

In this case, that’s R800 that could be better spent on a bikini that shows off your newly toned figure (giving up takeaways has benefits above and beyond fattening up your wallet). Check out the Shweshwekini Refileo Kini Printed Set on Zando, for example. A hefty R2009 at full price, if you can catch it on sale at 60% off you’ll be glad you dusted off your Tupperware in November and saved that R800. 

Shweshwekini's Refileo Kini Printed Set

Shweshwekini's Refileo Kini Printed Set, currently R1009 with a 50% discount

3. Start walking (R300)

We can’t avoid all travel for the month, but by being conscious of your travel spending, and avoiding unnecessary trips, you could save money on petrol or bus or taxi fare.

At just over R17.00 per litre to drive yourself, around R10 per short taxi trip or R50 for a ten-minute trip with Uber, walking starts to look very economical. 

Let’s say you pass on the Uber and take a walk (or skip a trip out, if you can) – you could save as much as R300 over the next few weeks.

4. Give up your vices (R1500)

Smoking, drinking… whatever your vice might be, November is a good time to seriously think about stopping. Knowing that your abstinence will pay off in just three short weeks could be the reason you succeed this time (unlike every New Year when resolutions go up in smoke before Valentine’s Day). 

Giving up smoking can save you as much as R45 per day, while abstaining from alcohol can save you anything from R20 for a Castle lager to R85 for a craft G&T cocktail. Let’s say you smoke nearly a box a day, and enjoy a few drinks on the weekend. We can guess that you’ll save as much as R900 on cigarettes, and about R600 on drinks, over the next few weeks. 

That’s a massive saving of R1500!

Do you know what that could buy you on Takelot’s Black Friday sale for R1500? A half price rose gold FitBit Charge 3, a discounted Sony Xperia XA1 DualSim 32GB LTE phone or Apple AirPods on 50% sale. 

Fitbit

Fitbit, R2 989

5. Hold up on the entertainment (R500)

Going to the movies, R150 with popcorn, clubbing with your friends, R300 on a slow night, riding the Cape Town Waterfront’s Wheel of Excellence with your new bae, R150, a guided cycle through Joburg’s East City, R200… these costs all add up fast.

By sticking to your budget and postponing some of these fun activities you could save enough to buy yourself happiness in the form of discounted clothes, shoes and techie gadgets from any of South Africa’s participating stores.

Let’s be conservative and say you might spend a minimal R500 on entertaining in November.

The following trending items could be discounted to R500 on Black Friday, making you the owner of a designer piece from Superbalist by the end of this month: bright printed Graca A-Line pants by David Tlale, R899, a 100ml bottle of CK Eternity Purple Orchid, R959, a Printed Twist Jumpsuit by Ruff Tung, R949…

David Tlale Graca pants


Add together all your savings and that’s a huge R3600 to spend on your favourite shops on the 23rd. Worth it? 

*All items listed are examples and sale prices are not guaranteed 

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