Watch out for road rage, parking space wars and auto theft
Hamilton, NJ, November 25, 2015 – Thanksgiving is just a few days away, followed by Black Friday, the official start of the holiday shopping season. However, this year the shopping landscape is changing. The number of retailers open on Thanksgiving is growing. Shop doors are opening earlier than ever, some at Thanksgiving dinner time (6 p.m.) and others continuing throughout the night and early hours of Black Friday morning. Before, during or after Black Friday, AAA urges shoppers to use caution when out bargain hunting, especially in dark parking lots and garages.
“Whether it’s the thrill of holiday shopping hustle and bustle, the hunt for the ultimate gift deal, or panic that there are six fewer shopping days this season, holiday shopping should not come at the expense of safety,” said Tracy Noble, spokesperson for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “This year more retailers are opening earlier than ever before (nearly a dozen major chains), just after dinner on Thanksgiving night, and others will open before daybreak on Black Friday. AAA advises shoppers to be aware of their surroundings, especially in dark parking lots, and stay alert while out and about.”
According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), more than 88 million consumers shopped online and in-stores on Black Friday last year and more than 35 million consumers shopped on Thanksgiving Day. And the shopping crowds could grow before the turkey gets cold, with many more retailers opening their doors on Turkey Day. Stores that will open on Thanksgiving include: Target, Wal-Mart, Sears, Kmart, Macy’s, Kohl’s, J.C. Penney, Toys R Us and Best Buy, as reported by the Associated Press.
AAA Mid-Atlantic also reminds shoppers to pack their patience when navigating through crowded parking lots and garages. Careless and inattentive driving in these tight areas could result in additional holiday expenses, including fender-benders, personal injuries and a general Grinch-like attitude.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, about 20 percent of all vehicle collisions that result in damage claims occur in parking lots. “You’ll have plenty of company this weekend and all season long, regardless of where you choose to shop,” Noble said. “Let your holiday goodwill extend to your fellow drivers. This should make the experience more enjoyable and crash-free.”
AAA Mid-Atlantic tips for driving and parking during holiday shopping:
AAA Mid-Atlantic, serves nearly four million members in parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia, and throughout Delaware, Maryland and the District of Columbia, and is on the web at aaa.com/community.
Phone: (609) 570-4131
Contact: Sue Madden
Phone: (609) 570-4130