Urban Etiquette: Holiday Shopping is Rough (How to Make It Better)

by Borderstan.com November 29, 2011 at 8:00 am 1 Comment


The craziness of sales are not for everyone. Mike has tips on how to navigate your merchandise through the remainder of the holiday shopping season. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Mike Kohn. Got an urban etiquette wrong that needs to be righted? Find Mike on Twitter @mike_kohn or drop him a line at [email protected].

I’ll admit that I’m one of the crazy people who go out and shop on Black Friday. I can’t stand the crowds and the lines, and I’ve already made it quite clear how I feel about pedestrians who don’t know how to walk (and suburban pedestrians in the mall are the worst, as I rediscovered this past Friday at the King of Prussia mall outside of Philly), but the deals are just so awesome. Call me a glutton for punishment – but I’m excited about the new stuff I got at pretty outstanding prices.

Amidst my fabulous shopping experiences, I can’t tell you how many times I got whacked in the face, legs, stomach, etc. with people who were way too cavalier about parading through with their shopping bags. So while this may be too late for the craziest shopping day of the year, as we gear up for our holiday planning, here are some things you can do to avoid getting beat up by your own heavy merchandise.

  • Keep your bags close. For crime reasons, there’s a whole other side of this one – preventing snatch and grabs and pickpockets from taking your stuff. But for our etiquette purposes, those things can run wild and will take people out if you’re not careful.
  • Let’s go back to basics here. Remember “please,” “excuse me,” and “thank you?” Yeah, they’re super helpful when people are in your path in a crowded store or street. If you try to push me, I will evaluate if tackling you is the right decision.
  • Along the same lines, plan to actually spend a fair amount of time doing your shopping. Snapping at people for taking too long and running around without any concern for anyone else doesn’t make things go faster. Everyone is doing what you’re doing, so either budget for extra time or stay home and shop online.

Was anyone else crazy enough to venture out on Friday to encounter crazy shopping experiences? Do you have any other tips for shoppers this time of year? Leave them in the comments and let us know.

Comments (1)

  1. Rude behavior in stores is not limited to the holidays, it’s just the stores are more crowed at the holidays. I avoid Black Friday like the plague. Let the unwashed masses have their $20 DVD player. Chances are that is all it is worth anyway.

    Grocery stores are showcases of stupid or passive-aggressive shopping behavior at any time of the year. My biggest shopping pet peeve is people who block the isle with their cart, oblivious to those trying to get by. A polite “excuse me” usually does not work. Another shopping peeve is people who feel the need to examine every loaf of bread or piece of fruit before they buy, even when others are obviously waiting.

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