Some people train for marathons, but here at Ibotta, we train for something a little different: Black Friday and Cyber Monday. We’ve spent all year honing our saving skills, and now it’s finally time to put them to the test! 

In case you somehow aren’t familiar with the two biggest shopping days of the year, allow us to explain. Every year on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), retailers offer deep discounts on everything from clothing and electronics to toys and furniture. Shoppers wake up early and rush to stores to save on their holiday gift lists — and maybe a little something for themselves. A few years ago, online brands decided to get in on the game, adding Cyber Monday (the Monday after Thanksgiving) to the sale schedule with online-only deals for both physical goods and intangibles like travel and other services. 

With so many opportunities to save, we want you to be prepared. So, we’ve put together our top tips for saving big on Black Friday deals (November 29) and Cyber Monday sales (December 2). 

1. Don’t be fooled by your calendar

We know they’re technically called Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but some retailers start rolling out deals ahead of time to beat the competition. So, check store sale leaflets and websites ahead of time. You might actually end up saving more or snagging limited-quantity items by shopping on Black Wednesday or Cyber Sunday!

2. Think beyond your gift list

Lots of shoppers use these sale days to cross off items on their gift lists. But no one says you have to stick to holiday shopping! Take advantage of discounts to save on big-ticket items for your own home, like a new sofa or flat-screen television. Pick up a new winter coat for less, or stock up on things you use every day, like bedding or cosmetics. You can also find deals for travel, restaurants, entertainment and salon and beauty treatments.

3. Maximize Your Savings with Ibotta

Make your money go even further by earning cash back on your already-discounted purchases with Ibotta. If you’re shopping in-store on Black Friday, check for offers in the Ibotta mobile app before you head to the store, and use Pay with Ibotta at dozens of national retailers to earn instant cash back at checkout. On Cyber Monday, visit your favorite online stores through the Ibotta app to earn money on your mobile shopping.

4. Do your research

Most retailers announce their Black Friday deals in advance, so it’s easy to figure out exactly what’s going to be on sale. But we know you’re busy, so we’ve gone ahead and scoured three of our favorite retailers’ Black Friday ads for you. Make a beeline for these doorbusters: 

Best Deals at Walmart

  • iPad 7th Gen 32GB: $249you save $80
  • Philips 65-inch 4K Android Smart TV: $278you save $221
  • Apple AirPods with Charging Case: $129you save $15
  • Instant Pot 6-Qt. Duo: $49you save $30
  • Oculus Go Virtual Reality 32GB Headset: $149you save $50
  • Disney Frozen Frozen 2 Fold & Go Arendelle Castle Playset: $40you save $19
  • Hover-1 All-Star Hoverboard: $89you save $59

*Please note, these prices are subject to change

The details: Doors open Thursday, November 28 at 6 p.m. Online sales begin Wednesday, November 27 at 10 p.m. ET. Prices also valid all day Friday, November 28 while supplies last. Shop more great deals starting Sunday, December 1 for Cyber Monday.

How to save even more: Add Walmart offers in the Ibotta mobile app before you shop in-store, then upload your receipt to earn cash back. Start with the Ibotta mobile app and earn a percentage cash back on your entire purchase.

Best Deals at Best Buy

  • Samsung 70-inch 4K Smart TV: $550you save $350
  • Sony 65-inch BRAVIA OLED Smart TV: $2,000you save $800
  • Microsoft Surface Pro 7 with 12.3″ Touch Screen: $600you save $360
  • Select PlayStation 4 Games: $28you save $32
  • Xbox One X 1TB Star Wars Jedi Bundle: $350you save $150
  • Beats by Dr. Dre Beats Studio³ Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones: $200you save $150
  • Nikon D7500 DSLR Two Lens Kit: $1,000you save $700

The details: Doors open Thursday, November 28 at 5 p.m., but you can shop online all day. New sales will be added on Friday, November 29. Doors open Friday at 8 a.m. Best Buy and BestBuy.com will also have Cyber Monday and Cyber Week events during the first week of December.

How to save even more: Add Best Buy offers in the Ibotta mobile app before you shop in-store, then scan your Best Buy QR code from the Ibotta app at checkout. Or start with the Ibotta mobile app when you shop Best Buy online to get 1% cash back on your entire purchase. 

Best Deals on Amazon

  • Ring Video Doorbell Pro with Echo Show 5 Bundle: $189.00you save $150
  • Kindle Paperwhite: $85you save $4
  • Fire HD 10 Tablet: $100you save $50
  • Fire TV Stick with 4K with Alexa Voice Remote: $25you save $25
  • Amazon Smart Plug: $5you save $20
  • Echo Dot: $22.00you save $28
  • Blink XT2 3 Camera Kit: $185you save $65

The details: Amazon’s online-only deals begin as early as Friday, November 22, a full week before Black Friday. Amazon will also offer a variety of Cyber Monday deals.

How to save even more: Start with the Ibotta mobile app when you shop Amazon online to earn up to 6% cash back on your purchases, depending on the product category. If you’re not already an Amazon Prime member, purchase a Prime membership (you’ll find the offer in the Amazon section of the Ibotta app) to receive a free $20 Amazon gift card. 

Holiday list