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The Ultimate Guide To Black Friday 2021

It may not be Thanksgiving yet, but Black Friday 2021 is officially here. Most major retailers from Amazon to Walmart to Best Buy to Target have all already kicked off their Black Friday sales. Great deals are available now, and more great deals are coming weekly.

If you're looking to get your holiday shopping game plan together, you've come to the right place. Here is your guide to finding the best deals for Black Friday 2021.

What you need to know about Black Friday 2021

Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, is one of the biggest deal-shopping events of the year. On Black Friday, almost every major retailer offers big discounts on holiday gifts, the hottest toys of the year, apparel, kitchen gifts, tech gadgets and more. Don't expect discounts on hard-to-find items like the Sony PlayStation 5, but you may be able to catch a PS5 restock during Black Friday.

Traditionally on Black Friday, some shoppers stay up late the night of Thanksgiving or wake up early to line up in front of stores for early-morning openings and doorbuster deals. In light of COVID-19, many stores closed on Thanksgiving 2020, and instead of directing shoppers to their brick-and-mortar stores on Black Friday, directed shoppers to Black Friday deals on their websites.

Curbside pickup options were popular in 2020, and will likely be just as popular in 2021. Curbside pickup allows you to order an item online from a big-box retailer, drive to a store location and have the store bring your purchase out to your vehicle when you arrive.

Black Friday sales have already begun

Though Black Friday 2021 is Nov. 26, if you wait that long to shop, you'll miss out on a some great deals. That's because Amazon, Walmart, Target and Best Buy have all already started their Black Friday sales. Amazon's Black Friday sale kicked off in October and will run through the Thanksgiving holiday, with a number of short-term and longer-duration deals.

The next phase of Walmart's Black Friday 2021 event, called Walmart Deals for Days, starts Nov. 22. But there are plenty of deals available there right now.

Electronics retailer Best Buy has similarly launched early Black Friday deals. Its latest batch of deals includes a $249 Cricut Maker cutting machine (save $120) that's great for holiday crafting, Jabra Elite 85t noise cancelling earbuds for $149 (save $80) and a 70-inch Samsung smart TV for $600 (save $150). Best Buy also has daily deals that expire today.

Target's Black Friday sale, Holiday Best, features new deals every week as well.

Start holiday shopping early this year

Shipping experts are recommending that you start holiday shopping now, even before the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales have begun. Though the situation there is improving, the Port of Los Angeles, which handles 40% of the nation's imports, is still working through a backlog of cargo shipments.

That means you may not find the products you want as quickly (or as affordably) as usual this holiday season. Shipping containers are also in short supply, increasing shipping costs. Retailers from Best Buy to Nordstrom are expecting some port-related delays. COVID-19 also has caused disruptions to global supply chains, and some overseas factories are shut down to prevent the spread of the illness.

Are there pre-Black Friday deals already available now?

Fortunately, shopping now doesn't mean that you have to miss out on great deals. Ahead are some pre-Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals you can shop right now at stores like Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, GameStop, Target and Ulta.

Samsung Chromebook 4: $125

Samsung Chromebook 4 Walmart

One of the most popular deals at Walmart this Black Friday is still available: You save more than half off when you purchase this Samsung Chromebook during Walmart's Deals for Days sale. This slim 11.6-inch device features 4 GB of memory, a full-size keyboard and trackpad and voice control with Google Assistant. You may find better Chromebooks for sale this holiday season, but you'll be hard pressed to find another under $100.

Samsung Chromebook 4, $125 (regularly $284)

Shark EZ bagless self-empty robot vacuum: $288

Shark EZ bagless self-empty robot vacuum Walmart

We've seen a number of good deals on robot vacuums for Black Friday, but this Shark vacuum is the lowest-priced self-emptying robot vacuum we've found this season. It can be controlled via an app or voice control to clean carpets and hard floors. After each cleaning session, the device automatically empties itself into its bagless self-empty base, so you won't have to empty it time and time again.

Shark EZ bagless self-empty robot vacuum, $288 (regularly $499)

Keurig K-Duo coffee machine: $79

Keurig K-Duo coffee machine Walmart

Fall is the perfect time for a warm cup of coffee -- or cup of hot cocoa -- so it's no surprise that Keurig coffee makers are popular around Black Friday. The Keurig K-Duo offers the best of both coffee worlds: the convenience of a coffee pod-based Keurig, and the versatility of a traditional carafe brewer.

Keurig K-Duo coffee machine, $79 (reduced from $99)

Ninja Air Fryer (4 quart): $69

Ninja Air Fryer Walmart

This 4-quart air fryer circulates hot air around your food, making it crispy on the outside and perfectly cooked on the inside. And it doesn't just air fry things: The wide temperature range (105° to 400° F) allows you to reheat and dehydrate food as well.

Ninja 4-quart air fryer, $69 (reduced from $89)

Apple AirPods with wireless charging case: $160

Apple AirPods with wireless charging case Best Buy

Apple AirPods are $50 off right now. These water-resistant wireless earbuds come with a wireless charging case. Easily share audio from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Apple TV to your AirPods. Plus, they're compatible with Siri.

Apple AirPods, $160 (regularly $200)

Mr. Christmas Alexa-enabled artificial Christmas tree: $300

Mr. Christmas Alexa-enabled artificial Christmas tree Best Buy

Is it holiday magic? No, it's your Amazon Alexa-compatible Christmas tree. Ask Alexa to turn your pre-lit Mr. Christmas tree's lights on and off at scheduled times throughout the day or perform one of 40 lighting functions. The artificial tree stands 6.5-feet tall.

Mr. Christmas Alexa-enabled 6.5-foot artificial Christmas tree, $300 (regularly $400)

55" Samsung 'The Frame' smart TV: $1,000

55 Samsung 'The Frame' smart TV Best Buy

Transform your TV into a piece of art when you're not streaming your favorite shows. The Frame smart TV has a built-in motion sensor that activates your device to display your favorite pieces of art with a 4K resolution picture, whenever you enter the room. No matter if you're admiring a Rothko or streaming Netflix, this QLED TV produces 100% color volume in the DCI-P3 color space, which is the format for most cinema screens and HDR movies for television. Plus, it's $500 off for Best Buy's early Black Friday sale.

55" Samsung 'The Frame' smart TV, $1,000 (regularly $1,500)

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