You have to have a plan to get the most from Black Friday. Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year as retailers slash prices to lure you into their store and get your consumer dollars. Deals abound in all stores, and you can either run around like crazy hitting each store or develop a plan to get the most for your time and money.

Review the Ads

Ads come out in the Thanksgiving paper. Review all the ads and write down which stores have the products at the price you like. You must read the fine print in the ad to discover if there are a limited number of the item, or if there is a set time limit for the price, such as only from 4:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. or from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Some stores keep the sale price all day, while others limit the time. Also look for coupons that reduce the price further during a certain time frame.

Compare the Sales

That is what shopping on Black Friday requires. Review the price of an item and then add any applicable additional discounts, as an item that may cost more at $500.00 is a better deal with 25% off between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m., than an item that is $450.00 with no discount. Compare the same brand prices and sizes. An item that is a cheaper brand or a smaller size may not fulfill your needs or be inferior. Look at the items included with each product, as a higher price camera with a free printer may be a better deal than a lower priced camera alone.

Plan Your Attack

Divide and conquer worked for the Romans and it will work for you. Speak to a family member or a friend who also wants an item from the same stores. Decide who will carry the list for one store to get all items, and who will go to the other. Get your children involved and bring them along to beat the one product per person quota. The child can serve as a place marker for the product until you get to the store to pay for the item. The more children the better as it increases your ability to pick up more limited items.

Get to the Store Early

Just because the store opens at 6:00 a.m., don't think you can stroll in and pick up the deal. The high-ticket consumer items, such as televisions, video consoles and computers, will have some people camping overnight to obtain the sale deal. Then there will be others who arrived about 4:00 a.m. If there is a high-ticket item you want, and it has a limited number for sale, then you had better get to the store at least three hours before the sale begins, and earlier would be better. Other items that are not unlimited, such as DVDs, CDs or keyboards, allow you to arrive later or closer to the opening time. Jewelry usually does not require an immediate appearance when the store opens, but electronics does.