Black Friday is happening on 29 November this year, and like many other U.S. 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 in 2017 were women’s shoes, tops and dresses – South African women were certainly shopping up a storm on Black Friday 2017. 

READ MORE: Shop these big Black Friday specials on a tiny bag budget

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. 

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 R2000 over the next week. 

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 (R150) 

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 R150 as of today! Just one R25 cappuccino a day may not seem like a hefty amount of money, but when you feel the effects on your budget by the end of the month, you'll thank us.

2. Stop eating takeaway (R250)

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 five remaining weekdays left until sale day and you’re looking at a substantial R250 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. 

3. Start walking (R700)

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 R16.00 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 R700 over the next few days on return Uber trips.

4. Give up your vices (R800)

Smoking, drinking… whatever your vice might be, November is a good time to seriously think about stopping. Knowing that your abstinence will pay off 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 R25 for a Corona 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 R350 on cigarettes, and about R450 on drinks, over the next few days. 

That’s a massive saving of R800! 

Okay, maybe you're allowed just one glass of wine. 

5. Hold up on the entertainment (R250)

Going to the movies, R150 with popcorn, clubbing with your friends, R450 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.

So let’s be conservative and say you might spend around R250 on entertainment this weekend (no one has a big budget the weekend before payday anyway).


Add together all your savings and you'll be sitting pretty with R2150 to spend on your favourite shops on the 29th. Worth it? 

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