Some count down the days, hours and minutes until Black Friday sales begin, but just what is on sale and for how much has been known for several weeks.
Kim Foster and her 3-year-old daughter Sanai were out shopping on Tuesday, but just for the necessities this time.
They plan to spend Thanksgiving with family and after the turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie..."It's always kind of a family tradition to dig through the papers and look at all the ads," says Foster.
But times are changing, now Black Friday ads are online way ahead of time.
Web sites like www.BFAds.net and www.Bradsdeals.com both show Black Friday ads from major retailers and outline deals for consumers. They have been for weeks.
"It started more or less last year in earnest, but now all of the major retailers have a Black Friday viral blast that goes out, trying to spoil a little bit some of the specials that will be available," says Scott Anderson, CEO of Anderson Partners Advertising.
Anderson says that more than 130 million people are expected to shop the day after Thanksgiving this year, 10 million more than last year.
The viral marketing could be why. "There will certainly be more shoppers; the question is whether there will be more sales. And with the level of discounting that's going on right now, that's really a good question."
Mary Ellen Bartels says her money will be spent another day. "Seems like there's a lot more sales than there used to be, some days they'll have like the biggest sale of the year or whatever, but it seems like 'Oh' then they have another one of those."
For Kim Foster and Sanai, the planning has already begun.
"We will probably take advantage of the things that would be more realistic that the stores would have in stock by the time we get there."
Foster does say she thinks the ads being purposely leaked ahead of time is handy. "I think the spoiler ads are a good idea to have those online and available, it would be helpful. Then you could kind of see what’s out," She may be keeping the online ads in mind for next year.