What is Black Friday? (A Brits Guide)

In a nutshell Black Friday is a promotion when retailers offer significant discounts on their products and services, expect to see up to 75% off in some cases, making it the perfect time to grab yourself a bargain!

The History of Black Friday

Let’s go back to 1789, when Mr President George Washington declared that the US celebrates a day of public thanksgiving. 174 years later and the great Abraham Lincoln announced that the US would officially celebrate Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November. Ever since 1963, the time after Thanksgiving has marked the start of Christmas festivities.

The actual term ‘Black Friday’ was believed to have been coined on September 24, 1869, when a guy named Jay Gould and his partner James Fisk, (also known as The Gold Ring) caused a scandal in gold sales and created a financial panic after trying to manipulate the gold market on the New York Gold Exchange. The Black Friday, September 24th gold crash caused the US months of financial chaos.

The use of Black Friday to refer to the shopping day was used in Philadelphia and Rochester to describe the crowds and traffic congestion accompanying the start of the Christmas shopping season. The term slowly began to spread.

Most stores, online and offline offer huge promotions on products with larger retailers offering up to 75% off.

When is Black Friday?

This year, Black Friday falls on the 24th November 2017.

So, what time does it start?

Over the past few years, we’ve seen the UK do Black Friday differently to the US, retailers start their offers earlier, sometimes up to two weeks before, extending the sales period to more than just one day.

Imagine if US retailers adopted Boxing Day and started it on December 1st, doesn’t sound correct, does it? But, you’d walk away with some pretty hot bargains and you’ll most likely spend half the amount on presents than you usually do.

Typically, the majority of retailers begin their sales at midnight but with the ever increasing competition to win sales we’d predict many will start earlier. We’ll keep you updated on all new deals as and when they go live.

Why is Black Friday relevant in the UK?

US retailers capitalised big on sales during Black Friday and now with most retailers being global, ‘Black Friday’ has slowly but surely made its way over to the UK as well as other European countries such as Italy. Now, a major promotion here in the UK, it is estimated that this year sales will surpass £5Bn.

Why doesn’t Asda participate on Black Friday?

If you don’t already know, Asda is a part of the giant U.S retail chain, Walmart, and they were one of the first retailers who announced they would be taking part in Black Friday; this was back in 2013 when the phenomena first started to hit the UK.

Last year in 2016, Asda DID NOT take part in the Black Friday sales because ‘it added time pressure to their customers’ lives’. They were one of biggest UK supermarkets that didn’t take part, and if you watched any footage of the “wrestling matches” that took place in their stores in 2014, you’ll probably understand why. We are pretty certain that Asda will not be participating any this year’s BF sales once again because we haven’t heard any different from them at this stage.

What has been the biggest sale of Black Friday ever?

The biggest sale ever that we are aware of is this Mini Cooper Pool Table, where retailers Home Leisure Direct were giving £10,000 off the retail price of £24,997.00. So if you decided that you needed an iconic British car slash championship sports collective sitting in your living room, this one was for you. We imagine even Chabuddy G couldn't get you a deal like that.

What kind of deals are we likely to see this year?

Electronics have been the major focus for the past few years. People often look for PlayStations (4 is always popular), iPads, iPhones, smart TVs, and DLSR cameras. This year will be no different and you will find deals on all of these, but we predict toys and gadgets will be huge!!

What retailers will be participating?

Major retailers such as Argos, John Lewis, Amazon and Currys will all have deals on. You can find a full list of Black Friday retailers here.

Are there any other major retailers that will not participate?

Last year, retailers such as Ikea, Next and Primark and Homebase did not participate as they say their prices are already competitive and we’d guess they probably won’t be taking part again this year, but we’ll keep you updated on this.

Where can I find out more?

Keep checking in with us as we regularly post fresh deals as and when they come in. Find our exclusive group on Facebook or sign up to our newsletter and join over 20,000 others who get our best deal updates before anyone else!

Black Friday Stats

Below are some interesting Black Friday stats.