Black Friday has become a retail phenomenon in recent years, as people hunt down the best deals on offer, often buying items which they would not ordinarily buy. But by steering clear of the spending frenzy, Britons could reap the rewards later in life.
People boycotting Black Friday and topping up their pension once a year instead could add £500 a month to their retirement income, according to analysis by InvestingReviews.co.uk.
Shoppers are expected to blow an average of £275 this weekend on TVs, iPads and other goodies as short-staffed high street retailers brace themselves for the first stampede since the pandemic.
Paying that same amount once a year into a pension from the age of 18 up to 67 would provide people with an additional £120,000 in retirement, or around £500 a month based on current annuity rates.
That £120,000 figure represents almost twice the average UK pension pot of £61,897 after a lifetime of saving.
Black Friday takes place on the fourth Friday of November every year, which is the day after Thanksgiving, the popular US holiday.
Many shops offer various promotions and discounts on Black Friday, enticing people to take advantage of the price cuts.
However, the event has evolved over the years, with deals now typically available through the weekend all the way to Cyber Monday.
Cyber Monday was created when retailers noticed many people who missed out on the Friday promotions went in search online to see if they could find any bargains.
The Black Friday hysteria has often caused chaos in stores, with people frequently getting injured during the mad dash that occurs at some outlets opening early in the US.
Online retailers offering attractive promotions have even seen their websites crash due to the number of people attempting to buy their products.
Many people will end up buying things they do not really need during the deals event, spending money which could be put to better use.
Conscious of this risk of overspending, Simon Jones, CEO of Investing Reviews, urged people to consider using their money more responsibly.
He said: “British shoppers are expected to spend an eye-watering £9billion this weekend — mostly on junk and tech products they don’t really need.
“Meanwhile the nation faces a cliff-edge when it comes to pension provisions for its rapidly ageing population.”
He suggested topping up a pension pot “by even a modest amount once a year” could provide a person with an additional “six figure windfall in retirement”.
Ms Jones added: “With one-in-five pensioners currently living in poverty, there’s never been a better time to boycott Black Friday and put your money to work on the markets instead.”