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26 November 2020

When is Black Friday?

Find out when Black Friday 2020 and Cyber Monday are happening, plus the ways in which the sales event will be different this year.
Ian Aikman

Black Friday 2020 looks a little different from previous years. Here, we explain how the sale works, what date Black Friday falls on this year, and how it all started.

When is Black Friday 2020?

This year, Black Friday falls on Friday 27 November 2020.

However, many retailers began offering deals from the start of the month, leading some to rename it 'Black November'.

In this guide, we'll explain how Black Friday works, why 2020 will look a little different, and point you in the direction of the best Black Friday deals our experts have found.

How will Black Friday 2020 be different?

Prior to the month-long lockdown in England being announced, some retailers were already planning to run Black Friday promotions through the whole of November to avoid large crowds in stores on a single day (or weekend), which is obviously not ideal for social distancing. 

But with non-essential shops in England now closed until 2 December, the Black Friday weekend will take place almost entirely virtually this year (supermarkets and other essential stores that have remained open will still run promotions in store). And many people across the UK, even in areas that aren't under lockdown, are avoiding shopping in person as much as possible.

This makes the other reason for running sales across a longer period even more important for many struggling retailers: the hope is that they'll be able to shift a lot of the stock that built up during the first lockdown and try to make up for the overall shortfall in sales this year.

Stores that are able to open will have systems in place to limit numbers, so even if lots of people do arrive at the same time, they will have to queue outside until there's enough space in the store to be able to move around while keeping a safe distance from others.

Many stores have implemented guidelines around only touching items you intend to buy and you may find you can't try clothing on - instead you'll need to take a chance and return things that don't fit.

Black Friday deals 

The Which? experts are working hard to sort the brilliant deals from the duds, highlighting the genuinely impressive discounts on quality items and steering you away from exaggerated offers on rubbish products.

Click to discover...

Retailer deals:

Looking for something more specific? Check out these deals:

You can also visit our Black Friday insider's guide to see all of our coverage in one place.

How did Black Friday begin?

Black Friday originated in America. As Thanksgiving always falls on the fourth Thursday in November, the following Friday is often observed as an unofficial holiday. 

Because many people are off work, shops drop prices – usually for one day only – to start the Christmas season. 

UK shops have since caught on to this trend and it was brought across the pond a few years ago. Between 2010 and 2013, Black Friday gradually built up momentum in the UK. In 2014, Black Friday was the peak pre-Christmas online sales day and online retailers haven't looked back since.

Keep checking our roundup of the best Black Friday deals for the latest expert picks from Which?.

When is Cyber Monday 2020?

Cyber Monday is always the Monday directly following Black Friday. Cyber Monday 2020 falls on 30 November. 

The tradition first started in 2005, when the National Retail Federation, an American trade association, noticed a spike in online sales the Monday after Thanksgiving. 

Last year's Black Friday deals

Our story on Black Friday deals to avoid revealed the so-called 'deals' that shoppers would have regretted snapping up.

Below are some of the other stories we published.

Best Black Friday deals by retailer 2019

Best small appliance Black Friday deals 2019

Black Friday deals on mobile and broadband providers 2019

Best tech Black Friday deals 2019

Best Black Friday deals on white goods 2019

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Best Currys PC World Black Friday Deals

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Best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2020

Best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2020

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Best John Lewis Black Friday Deals

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