Shopping Black Friday may require more advanced planning, as well as more of your turkey time this year.
Some national retailers are moving up their opening times and starting in-store specials and promotions two, three, four -- even eight -- hours earlier than last year.
You can find our full list of Black Friday store opening times as well as other related stories and tips online at www.southbendtribune.com/blackfriday.
At this time, Walmart, Sears and Kmart are opening earlier than any other stores. They have announced 8 p.m. Thanksgiving starts on Black Friday promotions.
This will mark the first time Sears stores will open on Thanksgiving.
Sears opened at 4 a.m. Friday last year.
Some Black Friday websites are reporting that Toys R Us will open at 9 p.m. Thanksgiving again this year, and that Target also will share that time-slot.
Last year, Target, Best Buy, Kohl's and many other stores and area shopping centers threw open their doors at midnight of Thanksgiving.
Best Buy and Kohl's are expected to open at midnight again this year.
Others are staggering their openings Friday morning.
Thursday hours are nothing new for Walmart and Kmart, but Walmart is making some changes that it hopes will keep shoppers in its stores as opposed to visiting the competition.
Walmart will stagger its promotions, making certain items available at 8 p.m. or 10 p.m. Thursday, and others at 5 a.m. Friday.
For the first time, Walmart is guaranteeing shoppers that it will have certain electronic items in stock from 10 to 11 p.m. or they can receive a rain check.
Sears Holdings Corp., which operates both Sears and Kmart, is moving up its store openings by eight hours due to consumer feedback.
Loyal customers indicated they wanted "more flexible Black Friday in-store shopping times and (displayed an) eagerness to shop
doorbuster deals," according to a Sears news release.
The earlier opening times could make it more challenging for shoppers to stand in line for as many doorbusters.
It also could prompt a greater number of consumers to shop online from home.
You might not shop Black Friday at all, but more than 86 million Americans are expected to shop the day after Thanksgiving this year, including thousands of area consumers.
Some shoppers are only out for the bargains, while others enjoy the social experience with family or friends.
We are planning to have a special team of shoppers posting updates on Facebook and tweeting from the lines. Keep tabs on the latest Black Friday news on our site.
Join our live chat Tuesday if you plan to shop Black Friday. Ask questions if this is your first time, or share your tips if you are a seasoned veteran.
We will also have members of our special reporting team available Tuesday. You can also bring other questions about local retail and
restaurant to the chat, which is scheduled from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. at www.southbendtribune.com.
Have you heard?
Dunkin' Donuts remains on track to open its doors on Indiana 933 in South Bend the week of Nov. 26. ... Golden Corral also remains on track to open its doors in early December on the southeast corner of Main Street and Douglas Road in Mishawaka.
Heidi Prescott's column runs on Fridays and Sundays. When she's not shopping, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 574-235-6070. You can also talk retail at Facebook.com/thebasket and at www.twitter.com/marketbasket.