New York—Americans this year may have to eat their Thanksgiving dinners a bit faster (or leave off the dessert) as it looks as if more major retailers will be opening for pre-Black Friday shopping on Nov. 28.
Although Target, Walmart, Sears, Lord & Taylor and Gap have opened stores on Thanksgiving evening before and are expected to again this year, Macy’s surprised late Monday afternoon by saying its 800 stores will open for the first time on Thanksgiving Day—just hours after its annual Thanksgiving Day Parade is broadcast.
A New Tradition?
“Shoppers looking for great holiday specials will find incredible offers and unbeatable doorbusters when most Macy’s stores open nationwide at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving evening, after families across the country have finished their holiday meals and celebrations,” the department store said.
What once was a sacrosanct day for family gathering and feasting, Thanksgiving is increasingly becoming an extension of Black Friday as retailers expand their hours in hopes of luring more shoppers to spend in an increasingly competitive retail environment. It is even more so this year since the calendar has the fewest days between Black Friday (Nov. 29) and Christmas, including one fewer weekend.
Indeed, Thanksgiving is morphing into “Grey Thursday,” an opportunity for early bird (not to be confused with turkeys however) shoppers to get to those Black Friday deals even earlier.
Last year Target opened at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving and Walmart opened for early bird specials at 8 p.m. Macy’s, Kohls’ and Best Best Buy opened at midnight on Black Friday last year.
Macy’s said it began planning early to let employees review available shifts throughout the holiday season and volunteer for their preferred shifts, including on Thanksgiving.