Black Friday shopping: Less frenzy, more curbside pickup
This is just not the year for Black Friday campouts. As numbers of new COVID-19 cases mount exponentially, gone are the days of a crush of bleary-eyed shoppers exploding through the doors of a big-box store, all jockeying for the same TV, laptop or vacuum cleaner. They’ve been replaced by online shopping, curbside pickup and socially-distanced lines to enter stores. With so many people shopping online at once, websites could be slow and hot items will sell out quickly, so those who are taking advantage of deals online should grab the laptop, make themselves comfy and get ready to hit ‘add to cart’ as quick as they can. Shoppers who are venturing out the door to shop should bring face masks, hand sanitizer, smartphone for coupons or contactless payment – and lots of patience. Expect lines to enter stores, social-distancing measures and face mask requirements, though many retailers are offering curbside pickup to customers who order online, touting the option as a way to avoid shipping delays while maintaining social distancing measures.
Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.
Check store hours, pickup options before leaving the house
On Friday, those planning on shopping online or in person for sweeter Black Friday deals than that pecan pie you dreamt about last night will need to have a plan before they head out the door. With retailers enacting restrictions because of COVID-19, many in-store doorbusters of Black Fridays past have moved online, and many retailers that were open in past years as early as Thanksgiving Day will have different hours this time around. But don’t fret: there are plenty of awesome Black Friday deals to go around.
US stock markets will reopen Friday for shorter sessions
After closing in observance of Thanksgiving Day Thursday, U.S. stock markets will reopen on Black Friday, but shutter early for the weekend. The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq will close at 1 p.m. ET and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association recommends that bond markets halt trading at 2 p.m. Foreign and currency markets are scheduled to be open, as are U.S. commodity markets, such as for gold and oil futures. The Dow Jones industrial average has a chance to close above 30,000 again after doing so for the first time Tuesday. The index dipped below that benchmark Wednesday and trading is typically far below normal levels on the Friday of Thanksgiving week. Recent gains extend a monthlong market rally as progress in the development of coronavirus vaccines and news that the transition of power in the U.S. to President-elect Joe Biden will finally begin have kept investors buying.
What to do with those Thanksgiving leftovers
Thanksgiving is, hands down, the best holiday for leftovers, and the Friday after Thanksgiving is the best day for eating those leftovers. Make sure you do the right thing with those stacks of Tupperware stuffed with turkey, dressing, pecan pie, beans, greens, potatoes, tomatoes. Once the leftovers are put away, you only have a few days to eat them. If stored in a refrigerator, leftovers can stay good for three to four days. If they’re stored in a freezer, it’s three to four months. Either way, it’s best to label the food with an expiration date. Bored with the same meal? Go beyond the basic turkey sandwich and get creative in the kitchen! Just remember that the CDC recommends heating all leftovers to 165 degrees before eating them. Now, go change into pants with an elastic waist, grab a fork, and prepare for Thanksgiving Dinner: The Sequel.
College football weekend starts early and heats up quick with key matchups
College football the week of Thanksgiving traditionally starts early with big rivalry games and pivotal matchups kicking off on Friday and despite the rash of cancellations, this week is no exception. Most notably, No. 2 Notre Dame attempts to keep its spot in the College Football Playoff with its matchup against at No. 23 North Carolina in what is the Irish’s toughest challenge before a likely appearance in the ACC championship game. Another game matching ranked opponents has big ramifications in the Big 12. No. 15 Iowa State can all but secure a spot in its first conference title game with a win at No. 21 Texas. Finally, in the Pac-12, two major rivalry games are on the schedule as No. 11 Oregon will play at Oregon State and Cal will host Stanford. Washington was supposed to play at Washington State as well, but the host Cougars have been dealing with a series of positive COVID-19 tests.
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Black Friday, stock markets reopen, college football: 5 things to know Friday