Some folks refer to the sport of skydiving by asking a reasonable question, “Why would I jump out of a perfectly good airplane?”
One could make similar arguments against other potentially dangerous ventures such as racing motorcycles or scuba diving with sharks.
Although I’m not one to shy away from risk, there is one hazardous undertaking I avoid at all costs.
Given the choice of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane or shopping on the day after Thanksgiving, you can pack my chute and turn the prop.
With apologies to the many fine advertisers who help support my profession, I get no thrill from pushing and shoving my way through a crowded doorway in order to fight with someone over a blue-light special.
That is why I welcome a new list from ShopperTrak, the world’s largest counter and analyzer of retail foot traffic. The company has released the “10 best days to shop.”
If, like me, you missed Black Friday, don’t worry. It didn’t make the list.
ShopperTrak focused on the days with the least amount of retail foot traffic in which you are most likely to get a good deal on Christmas gifts.
The list is a godsend to those of us who suffer from the irrational fear of crowded shopping malls. This variation of agoraphobia turns us into grumpy old men and women. It makes us want to run screaming FROM the mall rather than INTO the mall.
Of course our fears are not totally unfounded. People do get trampled on their way to mercantile mecca. They get stabbed and shot while shopping during the joyous season that celebrates the Prince of Peace.
Last year on Black Friday weekend, there were 684 million store visits and $20.8 billion in purchases. Retail experts predicted even more visits and money spent this year.
“Black Friday is not for the faint of heart,” said Bill Martin, ShopperTrak founder. “Shoppers must brave the crowds to take advantage of good deals. If they can venture back out after just a few days, however, they’ll have the full attention of store employees and plenty of remaining discounts.”
So, ShopperTrak, make my day.
The top 10 list includes the Monday through Thursday following Thanksgiving weekend. Tuesday is supposed to be the No. 1 day for the least traffic and best deals.
The other best shopping days are Dec. 3-6 and 10-11.
With 365 perfectly good days on the calendar, why should we all go shopping on the same date?
TimesDaily Executive Editor Scott Morris can be reached at 256-740-5721 or scott.morris@TimesDaily.com.