PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — The holiday shopping season is in full-swing with people flocking to catch those Black Friday deals.
Parking was slim at a Best Buy on Independence Boulevard in Virginia Beach. The popular electronics store saw heavy crowds at that location Friday morning.
A lot of people were seen going into the store, and coming out with computers and massive TVs. One customer told 10 On Your Side she walked away with the TVs she came for, the last two in stock. “They’re 55-inch Samsung TVs and they were $500 a piece.”
Best Buy was one of a number of stores that opened its doors on Thanksgiving Day. And some chose the shopping and big deals over second helpings of Turkey and football.
Black Friday shopper Viva Hathaway said, “It’s just fun. It’s exciting to be out with the people and shopping and doing things.”
Nearly half of all Americans will hit the stores this weekend, with overall sales up four percent.
Shoppers filled MacArthur Center in Norfolk, looking for the best deals.
According to MacArthur Center General Manager Jim Wofford, stores are enticing people with big discounts and it’s been working. “If this trend continues, this will be one of the better Black Fridays we’ve seen probably in several years.”
MacArthur Center offered safety tips to shoppers earlier this week ahead of the madness, which included not walking around with full hands and being aware of surroundings.
Some online retailers will be looking for a big turnout from shoppers, too.
A survey by the National Retail Federation found that 59 percent of shoppers plan to shop online this year, marking the first time that online is the most popular choice for shoppers.
However, shoppers like Matthew Sherman say waiting in lines for deals at a Best Buy with his father has become a tradition.
“For the most part you get used to doing stuff like this,” Sherman said. “For us, we have family who come out here and bring us food and we do all of the stuff you want. Most of the stuff people do on their Thanksgiving, we do the same thing. Just in the Best Buy parking lot.”
You can find a list of store hours for Black Friday on hrScene.com.