what stores (if any) don’t participate in black friday sales? in other words, what sorts of places is it safe to go without being mobbed?

realsocialskills said:

I don’t know if there are any stores that don’t participate at all. Gas stations and convenience stores are less likely to participate than most other stores. Grocery stores and small pharmacies are also less likely to participate. 

I think that most of the extreme stuff happens fairly early in the day though. 

The basic way Black Friday works is:

  • Stores advertise deep discounts on a popular thing
  • There are only a few of that thing actually available.
  • Lots of people want the thing, so they show up at the store very early in the day to try and buy the thing
  • Chaos ensues because a lot of people are there, and most of them aren’t going to get the thing they want most
  • A lot of people buy a lot of other things

This really extreme part happens early in the day, before they run out of the deeply discounted items. Stores stay crowded with shoppers all day, and that doesn’t entirely go away until after Christmas, but they’re not quite as intense or scary once the limited discounts have run out.