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It's A Science: Bargain Hunters Crowd Tri-State Stores For Black Friday Deals

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The shopping frenzy was in full effect throughout the Tri-State Area on Black Friday.

Shoppers hungry for deals were filling stores across the region, hoping to score big ticket items at small prices.

Thousands rushed into Macy's in Herald Square for the midnight opening, and the lines stretched around the corner at the Best Buy in Midtown.

Massive crowds also formed overnight at the Queens Center Mall, which opened at midnight, earlier than ever for Black Friday.

"We were here waiting for JC Penny for four hours," shopper Christopher Bonet said.

"Lots of crowds, lots of lines, people everywhere," Mike Fisher, who shopped for 15 hours, said. "Feet hurt, back hurt, ready to go home now."

"I don't usually do Black Friday stuff. I just figured I should try to get a good deal," Saraha Tabi of Flushing, Queens added.

For college student Jennifer Lee, Black Friday has become an obsession. She told CBS 2's Jessica Schneider she got to the Queens Center Mall at the stroke of midnight to hunt down the best deals -- and then came back later in the day for additional sales.

"12 a.m. it was less people but more lines because the stores are just about to open and now there's no lines but it's just more crowded and there are people everywhere," Lee said.

Overcrowding seemed to be the general theme of the day Friday.

"It's too crowded, too too crowded, and the lines are really big," said Olga Roman of Williamsburg, who added when asked if it was all worth it, "Yes, it's really worth it."

1010 WINS' Steve Sandberg reports from Jersey City


EXTRA: NYC's 8 Best 2012 Black Friday Shopping Sales & Freebies

Shoppers were out in full force at the Cross County Shopping Center in Yonkers. Many arrived overnight in the hopes of finding a great deal, CBS 2's Ann Mercogliano reported.

Anthony Russo said he started shopping at 2 a.m. and saved hundreds of dollars.

"Lots of great deals up here," Russo said. "Definitely worth it to come out."

The crowds kept flowing Friday at Roosevelt Field Mall on Long Island which opened its doors at midnight for the first time.

"It is worth coming out early if you know what you are going to get," one shopper told WCBS 880's Sophia Hall.

WCBS 880's Sophia Hall reports


For some people, the shopping started even before the turkey was sliced. Bargain hunters took advantage of the stores that opened on Thanksgiving Day.

Walmart, Old Navy, Toys 'R' Us and Kmart are among the stores that had early openings on Thursday.

EXTRA: Best Apps For Black Friday Shopping

Despite all the money shoppers are expected to spend, some experts believe Black Friday will be a bit anti-climactic this year.

With many big box stores having already opened on Thanksgiving, experts said Black Friday doesn't seem as crucial as it used to be.

Still, the average shopper is expected to spend about $750 this holiday shopping season – up 1.2 percent from last year.

Overall the National Retail Federation said holiday spending is expected to jump 4.1 percent to $586 billion.

The trade group's survey also shows more shoppers than ever – nearly 53 percent – planning to use their smartphones to compare prices while shopping.

What was the best deal you found? Let us know below...

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