Many people say they wouldn't be caught dead in a store on Black Friday, as they prefer to avoid the crowds and hassle, despite the deals. With the rise of smartphones, comes the ability to cross things off your holiday shopping list from the comfort of your own home, with the latest shopping apps.
One app, called "No More Socks," helps you keep track of who is getting what. You can set a budget, and put your holiday list right into your phone, for easy access. You can also take photos of items you're interested in, and there is also a barcode scanner built in. "If you see something on the shelf that you're not going to buy that day, you can scan it, and it saves it to your phone," PCMag.com's Chandra Steele says.
"Shop Style" is a free app that is like having a department store at your fingertips. There are over 300 stores available, and the stores are divided into categories like women, men, baby, kids and home.
If you do decide to brave the lines at the mall this Black Friday and this holiday season, a helpful app you may want to download is an app called "Fast Mall." This app gives you turn by turn navigation in the mall, and you can shake it to find a restroom. This app makes it easy to find places to eat, and find your car. The app has a voice recorder which allows you to record messages for yourself.
Fat Wallet's Black Friday app lets you narrow down deals by category or store, and it's very thorough. "Sale Locator" for iPhone and Android uses your phone's GPS to pinpoint deals around you, and can even give you directions.
If you'd like to avoid the long lines, crowds, and hassle of heading out to the stores this holiday season, keep in mind that December 16th is the fourth annual free shipping day, when thousands of merchants will offer free shipping with delivery by Christmas Eve.
In addition to smartphone apps, the internet can be a great resource when it comes to holiday shopping. The site BlackFriday2011.com is a good first stop, as is BlackFridayDeals2011.com, which is a site from the penny-pinching specialists at Savings.com. Amazon.com is also a great site for comparing prices, and Red Laser and Google Shopper offer even more price-checking power.