Diary Adventures of LagosMums: DALM | Black Friday and the Nigerian Shopper
Many Nigerians will know about Black Friday before they know about Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a national holiday in the United States, celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November. It is a day set aside for people to give thanks and share their gratitude with family and friends. When I lived in the US, Thanksgiving was a holiday I came to love as it was a real celebration. Family would travel from far and wide to a particular family member’s home and we would eat and eat and eat! Pray and thank God for family and life.
As with most holidays there is always the commercial side to it. Black Friday has it origins as the day after Thanksgiving and the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. Usually the sales are deep and known for a rush to the stores early in the morning (at least before e-commerce); not it mostly online.
Black Friday and Nigerian Shopping
I remember the first time I saw Black Friday sales being announced in Nigeria. There was no link to Thanksgiving. But I guess when it comes to jumping on global trends it does not matter if the reason for the trend is understood or not. We even took it a step further with some e-commerce companies in Nigeria turning the whole month of November into a Black Friday sales series.
This year Black Friday took on a whole new meaning for me. Why? My children were constantly telling me about Black Friday sales especially the Jumia sales! They told me about the flash sales, advised me to download the app and even warned me when the sale was about to end. Maybe Jumia needs some interns? We were passing a mall, they announced “look they are having Black Friday sales too”
Of course, as an over thinker and being “intentional” I do not want to give them the wrong impression nor encourage a materialistic tendency. Meaning, you do not have to buy just because there is a sale going on. Thanks to the use of the internet and laptops for homework, they were bombarded by the ads.
So the question is how can you help your child not get sucked in?
Tips to Help Children Navigate Black Friday
The parent offer the first training ground. It is important we help our children navigate all the allure to shop, before they go red buying unnecessarily. Children watch us and do what we do and not what we say. Therefore if we seem to get overly excited by Black Friday sales then they will also. Play it cool, no matter how exciting the sales look.
Budget and Save
Because things are on sale does not mean that you need to buy. Even though they mentioned to me a million times that the Iphone X was on sale, I told them that I did not need a new phone as my current phone was working perfectly fine. We will only buy what we have planned for.
Teach them Value of a Good Deal
There is absolutely nothing wrong with buying what you need. It is a great lesson for them to learn how to price check and to get the best price possible. For example they know we have been talking about getting a new fridge (our old one does not cool as well) so we checked out some deals because this was something we had planned for.
Parenting can be hard, but when it comes to setting the right buying habits we need to be the example they see. There will always be a “festival themed sale” such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter sales etc.
Oh by the way this is a good time to explain what Thanksgiving is all about and discuss the fake news circulating that Black Friday’s history is from the slave trade days. Who else got that on WhatsApp?
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