Students share their experiences working and shopping on Black Friday


Credit: Flickr user djLicious

Shown above are people waiting outside a Target on Black Friday. WHS students share their experiences working and shopping on Black Friday in the Natick Mall. “If you have any people in mind you have to buy gifts for, it’s a good time to take advantage of those sales too,” senior Lizy Flagg said.

Aimee LaRochelle and Lina Baranovsky

Junior Abby McCarthy:

McCarthy is working at Aeropostale at the Natick Mall on Black Friday this year. She says she’s ready to go with the flow and get customers what they need.

“I think it’s going to be really busy, and we’re probably going to run out of a lot of the clothes, and there’s probably going to be a long line at the register, and it’s going to be my job to fix those problems,” McCarthy said. “I’ll have to be ready on my feet, running around, talking to people and just keeping it going.”

McCarthy recommends going shopping earlier in the morning on Black Friday, avoiding the hours between one p.m. and eight p.m. because that’s the most popular time for shopping.

“I recommend going to Macy’s because that’s a big store that opens at midnight,” McCarthy said. “I’ve gone there at midnight in the past and have bought winter gear.”

McCarthy shares that she likes to shop for others rather than herself on Black Friday because it is the first day people start thinking about buying gifts for the holidays.

Senior Lizy Flagg:

Flagg works at Aerie in the Natick Mall and will be working during Black Friday for the first time.

This Friday, Flagg will be going to work at six a.m or seven a.m. and will be leaving around three p.m.

“There are long shifts on Black Friday, but people say it goes by really fast just because you’re doing stuff all the time,” Flagg said.

Aerie gets a lot of shipments in for Black Friday, so employees have to organize and get everything stocked in advance to prepare for the hectic day.

“I’m pretty excited about [Black Friday], because my coworkers that I’ve talked to said it’s a really fun day just because so much is happening and it’s so chaotic that everyone just kind of laughs it off and has a good time,” Flagg said.

According to Flagg, the mall is most crowded during the middle of the day instead of in the morning, which is what people might expect. From her past experience shopping on Black Friday, it’s quieter earlier in the day, but by around nine a.m., the mall gets very busy.

“[At] many stores that open during the night or at midnight, people camp out and get ready for them to open, but the last couple of years we’ve been at the mall early in the morning, it hasn’t been crowded at all,” Flagg said.

Flagg shops both for herself and for other people on Black Friday. According to her, she tends to stick to clothing stores, such as American Eagle and Aerie, while her parents shop for electronics and home appliances. Flagg has seen discounts up to 50% off at the mall clothing stores.

“[It is] definitely a good time to take advantage of clothing deals, but then you also have Christmas coming up, so if you have any people in mind you have to buy gifts for, it’s a good time to take advantage of those sales too,” Flagg said.

Flagg prefers shopping in physical stores instead of online because she likes trying things on.

“Most of the time on Black Friday I end up buying clothes, and I definitely am one of those people who has to try on all their clothes,” Flagg said. “Ordering clothes online stresses me out. I feel like it’s just kind of a fun experience anyway to go to the mall and try stuff on.”

Flagg encourages other students to come to Aerie on Black Friday.

“Come to Aerie. We’ve got some good sales going,” Flagg said. “I recommend working there too. If you need a holiday job, apply to American Eagle and Aerie.”

Senior Tucker Moody:

Moody works at Foot Locker in the Natick Mall, but he will not be working on Black Friday this year.

“I’m not working on Black Friday because I won’t be around, but if I was around, then I would want to work because my salary is partly commissioned based, and I would probably make a lot of money selling a bunch of stuff to customers,” Moody said.

According to Moody, Foot Locker’s strategy for Black Friday is different than that of most other stores.

“At Foot Locker, it is kind of different because we don’t really have any big sales,” Moody said. “We just have special releases and launches, but that’s not your typical Black Friday.”

He explains there are a lot of deals online, especially on the Saturday and Monday after. He also gives advice on physical stores to shop at on Black Friday.

“If you want to go out, you can get really good deals at Best Buy for electronics and at Walmart for everyday stuff,” Moody said.