NEWS

Is Black Friday All Hype? Here's What Consumers Say...

'There is nothing special on Black Friday... I think it is hogwash!'

24/11/2017 12:46 SAST | Updated 24/11/2017 12:46 SAST

Black Friday initially started in the U.S. on the day after Thanksgiving, but the frenzy has now spread throughout the world.

This year, Black Friday in South Africa is close enough to payday to get many South Africans excited. Since the early hours of Friday morning, frantic shoppers chasing specials have been camping outside stores.

But does all this hype really make a difference to consumers? Especially those who are already cash-strapped, or in the low-income bracket?

"There is nothing special on Black Friday... I think it is hogwash!"–– Vusi Mchunu

Read: Black Friday: Websites Crash And Crowds Go Wild

HuffPost spoke to shoppers on Black Friday in Johannesburg, to find out what they thought of the hype and whether it actually makes a difference to buyers.

"With Black Friday being over-exaggerated, I don't think it makes much of a difference. Whatever tag they have, you will find it throughout the year being promoted -- I think it is hogwash!" said Vusi Mchunu.

"Black Friday is promotional stock –– stock they have accumulated, and now they are phasing out this stock," he insisted. "There is nothing special on Black Friday –– there [are] always promotional products on [a] weekly [basis] with the prices they have."

"We are disappointed. We woke up early, only to find out the prices are still the same."

Two young ladies who have been camping at the Campus Square mall since the early morning were less than impressed.

This is what Hilda Kasa told HuffPost: "We are disappointed. We woke up early, only to find out the prices are still the same. I feel they are lying to us. They wasted black people's time –– they wasted our time! We expected the boom."

"They are exaggerating," Hilda's friend, Pearl Hlatshwayo, added. "Now we are going back home empty-handed –– they even sell old, ugly stuff."

A young man who appeared not to have been attracted by Black Friday felt that it was an "American tradition retailers use to lure people".

"I think if you really cared about consumers, why not have Black Friday for property and things that matter –– not clothes. You have Black Friday for liquor and food, and I feel it's marketing/retail psychology," said Lloyd Chauke.

However, there were some consumers who think the annual sale does offer value. One of those was Vukani Nxumalo, who saved through the year so he could stock up on Black Friday deals.

"I did not know anything about [Black Friday] till last year –– but it has helped me," he said. "I think the prices are right. As people, we do not get satisfied the same, but I am satisfied. As you can see, I have my bag and plastics full".

"I think it is good to have it once a year –– it also helps us buy something meaningful to bring back home."

Are you heading to a shopping mall in search of a bargain for Black Friday, or are you stuck at work or home? Or could you not care less? Have your say on the HuffPost poll.