The National Credit Regulator (NCR) has urged consumers to put away their credit cards and shop sensibly today, Black Friday.
The regulator’s acting manager for education and communication, advocate Kedilatile Legodi said, “If you did not plan and budget for Black Friday, you are cautioned not to use credit. This is because you will not be saving, as credit costs more”.
Legodi said consumers should never take for granted the value of planning and budgeting. “By drawing up a list to avoid falling into the trap of buying things you don’t need, and by budgeting you will be ensuring that your spending is within your means”.
He added: “Although Black Friday may indeed be providing consumers with an opportunity to buy goods at special and discounted prices, consumers still need to make use of this opportunity in a wise and responsible manner.”
Black Friday is on today and will no doubt have shoppers flocking to stores to take advantage of the bargain prices on offer.
“Buying on credit without a plan may lead to inability to repay the credit granted. Should the consumer not be in a position to repay, credit providers will take legal action and this will negatively affect your credit record,” Legodi advised.
Thabiso Mamathuba, an investment analyst at First National Bank said the event had already expanded beyond today’s activities to Cyber Monday, early-bird countdowns, pre and post deals with entire weeks now dedicated to a variety of promotions, flash sales and markdowns.
“This has resulted in consumers’ holiday shopping patterns shifting earlier than the traditional December period.
“However, retailers regard the November event as an opportunity to stimulate December sales, as the event drives visits and footfall online and in stores that expose consumers to the available products,” noted Mamathuba.
The SAPS have also urged shoppers to practise safety and be vigilant at all times as thieves anticipate “this busy season as well”, hoping to turn unsuspecting shoppers into victims of crime. – Cape Argus