With things returning to normal more than they have in the past year and a half, holiday shopping will almost certainly be very popular this year…
And as we all know, there’s no day more famous (or infamous) for its deals and discounts than Black Friday.
In all the hustle and bustle of hunting for sales, it can be easy to forget to make personal safety a priority.
So, to help you protect yourself, your shopping buddies, and your purchases, we’ve put together this list of twelve safety tips for Black Friday 2021.
Read on to make your holiday shopping trip as risk-free as possible, and discover the fastest way to get help in an emergency.
1. Avoid the Shopping Stampedes
We’ve all heard about the dangerous and even life-threatening stampedes that happen in stores on Black Friday.
With hundreds of people scrambling to get through the front doors first, something bad is bound to happen…
Needless to say, no gift — no matter how special or expensive — is worth the risk of getting hurt over.
Since Black Friday 2021 will be the first one in two years, these mad dashes could be much more likely to happen. So, steer clear of any stores that are known for having stampedes.
2. Pick Stores, Plazas, & Malls You Know Have Security
Stores and shopping centers with security can lend you a hand if you lose something — or worse — someone on your Black Friday trip.
A lost wallet, purse, or shopping bag full of sale items can quickly ruin your day. But if you have a security team on your side, you’ll have a better chance of locating the lost or stolen goods.
When you’re planning out your shopping spree, make sure to pick places that have a healthy security presence.
3. If You’re Using Cash, Stock Up Before Black Friday
Not only are ATMs likely to be slammed on Black Friday, but they can also be hotspots for would-be thieves.
The best way to avoid a same-day trip to the ATM is to take out as much as you think you’ll need a day or two before.
4. If You’re Using a Card, Only Take the One You Need
The more cards you have on you, the more you’ll have to cancel if they get lost or stolen.
Black Friday is a thief’s paradise, so it’s best to keep your purse or wallet as light as possible. The fewer valuables you carry with you, the better.
5. If it’s Dark Out, Park in a Well-Lit Area
This tip goes for any day of the week, but it’s especially important for Black Friday. Thieves like to fly under the radar, so cars parked in dark spots are much easier targets.
If you’re still doing your shopping at night, find a well-lit spot either close to the store or under a parking lot light.
6. Store Your Holiday Purchases in the Trunk
If you need to drop off some merchandise at the car between stores, the trunk is the best place to put it.
Keeping your holiday spoils in the back seat is like painting a big red bullseye on your car. If a potential thief is scouting the parking lot, that’s exactly what they’re looking for.
But when you put your purchased items in the trunk, they’ll be out of sight, encouraging any thieves to keep walking.
If you have an SUV or crossover that doesn’t have an enclosed trunk, bring some blankets with you to cover up any items you want to keep in the car while you continue shopping.
7. Follow Safety Precautions in the Parking Lot
This tip boils down to being mindful and aware of your surroundings. When you’re walking back to your car, have your keys ready as soon as you walk out the door.
If you’re fumbling around in your pocket or purse in the parking lot, you can’t pay attention to what’s going on around you, making you an easier target for theft.
When you make it to your car, take a look inside before getting in. Make sure there are no signs of a break-in and that there’s no one inside that isn’t supposed to be.
These precautions can help you stay vigilant, prevent any potentially dangerous situations, and most importantly, protect you and your loved ones.
8. If You Can, Bring a Friend (or Two)
The buddy system is always an excellent choice when you’re out and about, and even more so on Black Friday.
Shopping partners ensure you have a safety net in case things get lost, stolen, or another emergency happens.
The more friends and family you have with you on your holiday shopping trip, the merrier!
9. Wear a Mask Indoors
Although cases have been steadily dropping, we’re not quite out of the woods yet in the United States.
With crowds of people coming out to find deals on holiday gifts, wearing a mask while you’re shopping can help protect you and your loved ones from the spread of covid-19. And bringing some hand sanitizer along couldn’t hurt either!
10. Shopping Online? Use One Card for All Your Purchases
Much like tip number four, use one card for all your online purchases for Black Friday 2021. That way, if your information gets stolen, you’ll only have to cancel one card.
11. Beware of Spam Emails & Bogus Special Holiday Offers
This time of year, scam websites often try to take advantage of hopeful discount hunters. Be on the lookout for spam emails and online offers that seem a little too good to be true.
Basically, if you haven’t signed up for updates or promotional emails from them, don’t click on any links they send you. Many of these websites will try to get you to input your information so they can steal it.
12. Download Rescu for the Fastest Emergency Response Times
The Rescu app — now with GPS-location services — bypasses the lengthy phone calls that come with the traditional 911 service, making it the fastest way to get help in an emergency.
How, you ask? With Rescu, you can send an alert to notify the police, fire department, or medical services with just two taps on your phone.
Using a specially designed location system developed specifically for subscribers, Rescu’s GPS-powered Prime service will identify your exact location and dispatch help instantly.
Taking Rescu with you on Black Friday is as easy as bringing your phone, and in an emergency, you won’t have to spend time talking to dispatchers before getting help.
If necessary, Rescu allows you to call or text chat with dispatchers and provide details about the situation after responders have been sent out. That way, your safety always comes first.
Click below to download Rescu Prime today, or select the standard subscription for round-the-clock protection at home.
Regardless, we wish you the best of luck in finding holiday deals, and we hope you have a fun and safe Black Friday this year!