The season to spend is upon us. But this year things will be a bit different. This grinch of an economy has American households in a financial pinch and retailers in a financial tailspin. In a survey of the 40 biggest retailers, 60 percent expect sales to flat, at best. That's bad news for them but good news for shoppers. Steeper discounts and earlier promotions are ways stores are hoping to salvage what they can of the upcoming holiday season. And on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when the official shopping frenzy begins, economists are predicting even deeper discounts. You can get the scoop on what will be on sale right now. A simple search of Black Friday Deals will get you everything you need to know to find what you're looking for for less. Here are some examples, Walmart will have GPS systems for under $200. Target will have deeply discounted cameras. Sears will offer 19 inch LCDs for $300, down from $500. They're also offering a 46 inch Sharp TV for $900, down from $1400. There's even technology to help on your holiday bargain hunt. The new G-1 Google Phone from T Mobile does the bargain hunting for you with a built in bar code reader. You can also send a text message to Amazon from any cell phone and the folks there will compare prices for you. No surprise, they'll often tell you buying from them is the best deal. So this season, with a little comparison shopping and a lot of stamina, big savings could bring a little more holiday cheer. Something retailers hope you spread around in the form of cash.
[Sam McCall] 5:07 pm: Hi Stacy. I was wondering how long you have been doing this savvy shopper blog. I just happened to be home a couple of days ago when you had Debbie on and I've been hooked for the past 4 days now. I love all the good info you give us.
[Sam McCall] 5:12 pm: I figured out how to download my coupons to my Kroger card, finally. Shortcuts.com has good coupons too.
[nancyso] 5:14 pm: Just watch your receipt. Shortcuts hasn't been working on everything right now. Betty Crocker Frosting didn't work yesterday
[nancyso] 5:15 pm: Other people on www.hotcouponworld.com said they had problems too.
[Sam McCall] 5:16 pm: nancy, thanks for that info. I haven't tried my coupons yet. Did they end up giving you the coupon discount?
[nancyso] 5:17 pm: I went back to Krogers today with my receipt and they gave me back the money
[Sam McCall] 5:17 pm: did you print the coupon too?
[john] 5:18 pm: how muck do you think laptops are at walmart
 5:18 pm: Well, I regularly work on the Morning Show and do a segment called Morning Extra. I am doing these stories just for this week about Savvy Shopping. I'm so glad you've enjoyed them. You should be sure to watch in the mornings too! We have all sort of fun information.
[nancyso] 5:18 pm: On shortcuts it also has a place to dispute the online if you don't get your money/ But that part wasn't working right last night.
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:18 pm: THIS IS A GOOD IDEAL
 5:18 pm: John- Google Black Friday Deals and you will find all sorts of information about upcoming sales.
[nancyso] 5:19 pm: You don't print coupons on shortcuts. But I did have a $.50 coupon from the newspaper to make the frosting free.
[TimC] 5:19 pm: How will local retailors fair this holiday compared to the national ones you mentioned in the story?
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:19 pm: WAL MART GOT THE DEALS TIS YEAR ALSO
[nancyso] 5:20 pm: I got an email today warning against buying Gift Certificates this year with a long list of companies folding.
[Sam McCall] 5:20 pm: I didn't know that you couldn't print them, I just downloaded them and was going to go back to print them but glad you told me, saved me time, lol
[VincentFireCapt] 5:20 pm: Good Evening!
[john] 5:20 pm: laptops are 4000000
 5:20 pm: Tim- It's certainly hard to say until the shopping season is over. But in light of recent events in our area (for example, layoffs at Toyota) and general economic climate, it appears many might be scaling back on their shopping.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:20 pm: Looks like there are going to be some good deals on the LCD tv's...
 5:20 pm: Nancy- I too received that email. It's good information to have
[nancyso] 5:21 pm: shortcuts add to you Kroger Plus card. Then you hit the print button to take to the store to know what you can save on
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:21 pm: the companies not paying the cards off
[TimC] 5:21 pm: What are the top HOT items this year?
 5:21 pm: You don't print the coupons on shortcuts but there is a place where you can print out a list of what you've loaded on to your card. That way you won't forget.
[atbarr] 5:21 pm: Why don't you make up a shopping list of name brand items. Then go to Wal-Mart, Kroger, and Meiers, and purchase them. I bet that Wal-Mart will beat them hands down. The Kroger card is a joke. When I take their ad to Wal-Mart (Wal-Mart will match), most of the time, Wal-Mart's regular price is less than Kroger's or Meiers.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:21 pm: I'd say the LCD tv's...19 inch for 300 bucks
[VincentFireCapt] 5:21 pm: Not bad at all....atleast I don't think so..
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:21 pm: what cards are no good
[john] 5:22 pm: who live in liberty
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:22 pm: WALMART IS HARD TO BEAT
[TimC] 5:22 pm: each year we hve one toy that is the HOT item what will that be this year?
[Sam McCall] 5:22 pm: That's a really good tip on not buying gift cards. My family always gives out gift cards
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:23 pm: IBUY A LOT OF GIFT CARDS
 5:23 pm: atbarr- It's never a bad idea to see if another store will match another's low price. As Sam and I discussed yesterday, often retailers count on us NOT asking the questions that could save us money. It NEVER hurts to ask.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:23 pm: Maybe these Black Friday sales will boost the economy a little bit...
[LIGE NOLAN] 5:23 pm: THANXXX
[atbarr] 5:23 pm: I love gift cards for the grand kids.
[Sam McCall] 5:23 pm: I can't believe the price on those tvs and we're in the market for one.
 5:24 pm: Kids love to go and "buy" their own stuff with gift cards.
[Sam McCall] 5:24 pm: What I meant to add was - we won't be giving out gift cards this year
[john] 5:24 pm: walmart is hard to beat
[nancyso] 5:25 pm: There is a huge list of gift cards of stores with problems. You can probably google and see. I remember Home Depot, Circuit City, Starbucks was some that were listed on there.
 5:25 pm: Apparently there's not a lot of recourse if you buy gift cards from a business that goes out of business before they are redeemed.
[john] 5:25 pm: dose whyt give out gift cards
[VincentFireCapt] 5:25 pm: Best Buy seems to always have good deals during Black Friday
[TimC] 5:26 pm: So the HOT items are LCD Tv's - not Gift Cards - I found this BLOG on the website that has a list of HOT items http://www.wkyt.com/blogs/technologyblog/34740209.html
 5:26 pm: And there are always amazingly LONG LINES outside of Best Buy in Hamburg early on Black Friday morning.
[nancyso] 5:26 pm: I have noticed the shelves are not full this year. At Target about 2 weeks ago they only had any christmas socks for girls and lots of bare shelves.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:26 pm: LoL yep!!! always stacy...
[Sam McCall] 5:26 pm: I hate those lines, lol
[VincentFireCapt] 5:27 pm: I'm really considering the buy on the LCD tv deal...My computer monitor is LCD and its hard to beat....
[TimC] 5:27 pm: is anyone going to make their own gifts this year?
[atbarr] 5:27 pm: Why don't you make up a shopping list of name brand items. Then go to Wal-Mart, Kroger, and Meiers, and purchase them. I bet that Wal-Mart will beat them hands down. The Kroger card is a joke. When I take their ad to Wal-Mart (Wal-Mart will match), most of the time, Wal-Mart's regular price is less than Kroger's or Meiers.
[nancyso] 5:27 pm: Are there any small hand tv ( Like Sony WatchMan) out that will work after 2-2009
 5:27 pm: Well Nancyso, many retailers have cut back quite a bit anticipating a slim season. Some aren't even hiring extra holiday help. At the mall recently there was only one woman in the shoe department. She said they are bringing on no more employees to help out through the end of the year. You know, in year's past, everyone hired extra help for the season.
[Sam McCall] 5:28 pm: Do you have any ideas of what to make for gifts
 5:28 pm: Yeah, TimC- What did you have in mind?
[VincentFireCapt] 5:28 pm: Sam, Seems like tarts/tart burners are big this year, as far as craft-wise goes...Maybe something along the lines of that.
[atbarr] 5:29 pm: Like WKYT said, google "black friday deals". Stay home and miss the crowds,...and cold.
[salelooker45hoho] 5:29 pm: stacy when you go on to bluegrassmoms what do you click on to find the fru-gal
[Sam McCall] 5:29 pm: Stacy you're right. I went to Penneys last weekend and they only had 2 people working and they were really busy on Sunday.
[nancyso] 5:30 pm: I had the same problem at Meijer not enough help. One girl working several lanes plus uscan
[Sam McCall] 5:30 pm: In the shoe dept
 5:30 pm: There is usually a place that says FruGal... you click there to see her daily blog.
[Sam McCall] 5:30 pm: I left out that part. oops
[TimC] 5:30 pm: I always have certain friend who bake goodies and I love getting them... of course I have to set a new resolution to lose 10 pounds
[salelooker45hoho] 5:31 pm: ok thanks so much I went there and was not sure how to find her I did not see anything that even listed her name
[atbarr] 5:31 pm: This is a bad time of the year to try and lose weight.
 5:31 pm: Well, speaking as someone who worked holidays at the mall one year in college- I hope crowds are thin for employee's sake...it can get crazy during the holidays and people can be quite rude.
[Sam McCall] 5:31 pm: Of course they had more than two people working in the store but only in the shoe dept they were short handed and had to wait longer than I cared to. It's going to be worse everywhere this year with less people working. It's sad, really.
[nancyso] 5:32 pm: dont' forget the lexcheapcycle board on yahoo to find some good items new and used at yard sales prices. It is kinda like craiglist
[TimC] 5:32 pm: I know, why did they have to have Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Valentines so clase together?
[VincentFireCapt] 5:32 pm: I would really hate to have to deal with people especially eager shoppers during this time...
 5:32 pm: I agree, TimC. Enjoy the holidays and be happy with yourself! We could all use to lose a pound or two but this is not the time!! Enjoy the red velvet cake and forget it!
[TimC] 5:32 pm: don't forget to go here for HOT items - http://www.wkyt.com/blogs/technologyblog/34740209.html
[VincentFireCapt] 5:32 pm: Bless those who do it everyday though....honestly.
[TimC] 5:33 pm: Vincent - I agree and that is why I shop online
[VincentFireCapt] 5:34 pm: Yeah I do most clothes shopping online...usually..
[nancyso] 5:34 pm: Several online store are offering free shipping this year
[VincentFireCapt] 5:34 pm: So much easier, and usually better deals and more items to choose from.
 5:34 pm: If you go the Black Friday Deals websites you'll notice the majority of those fliers do promote free shipping.
[nancyso] 5:35 pm: http://www.freeshipping.org/
[admin->TimC] 5:35 pm: I disagree, I'm lots of fun.
[Sam McCall] 5:35 pm: I worked retail too and people can get very testy around the holidays so I try to put a smile on for those working hard in that field. It's not their fault if they don't have your size so don't take it out on the employee, :heart:
[VincentFireCapt] 5:35 pm: amen sam lol
 5:36 pm: Amen again, Sam!
[VincentFireCapt] 5:36 pm: haha!!!
[nancyso] 5:36 pm: Sam, I agree.
[atbarr] 5:36 pm: Ditto Sam.
[Sam McCall] 5:37 pm: :yeah:
[TimC] 5:37 pm: OK I am on the Dito train
[Sam McCall] 5:38 pm: Stacy, I'm glad you showed the prices on those tvs. That's a really good deal.
 5:38 pm: Hope you find a good one!
[Sam McCall] 5:39 pm: ME TOO
[VincentFireCapt] 5:39 pm: Amber , is talking about us on tv haha
 5:40 pm: We're all famous!
[VincentFireCapt] 5:40 pm: LoL... Woo!
[VincentFireCapt] 5:40 pm: So, is everyone travelling on Thanksgiving?
[Mikala Collins] 5:41 pm: Where could I find the cheapest prices?
 5:41 pm: I'll be right here!
 5:41 pm: Welcome to all of those who just joined us!
[Rodney7677] 5:41 pm: Thanks
[Sam McCall] 5:41 pm: Everyone loves to eat so we usually buy gift cards from the cracker barrell on line and they send them directly to our out of state family. They love to eat.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:42 pm: lol , that's a good idea Sam.
 5:42 pm: We've chatted about everything from coupons and Black Friday deals to discourteous mall customers. Feel free to join in!
[Sam McCall] 5:43 pm: Tim was talking about baking cookies so I thought about the cards for food, lol
[phyllie] 5:43 pm: Where can you get the best Black Friday deals?? I missed that discussion. Sorry.
 5:44 pm: Google Black Friday Deals and you will find numerous websites dealing upcoming holiday sales.
[Sam McCall] 5:44 pm: Phyllie you just said it - google black friday deals
[Sam McCall] 5:45 pm: I would've never thought to do that if Stacy had not shown it on tv, :)
[Sam McCall] 5:47 pm: I love to shop at Kohl's in hamburg, they always have good deals and especially when they send out those discounts in the mail on top of the sale price, you can get some really good deals that way but you have to use a Kohls credit card.
[VincentFireCapt] 5:47 pm: Ya know, Actually right now Wal Mart has some pretty good deals on LCD tv's ...I seen some the other day, you would think they would be more expensive...
[phyllie] 5:47 pm: What about online shopping deals on Monday after Thanksgiving?? Will there be a lot of deals there this year??
 5:48 pm: I think you're bound to find good deals online. Many retailers are promoting free shipping right now. That can add up to nice savings.
[Sam McCall] 5:48 pm: Stacy I was about to say that too
[VincentFireCapt] 5:49 pm: Snowing good in Louisville right now....Not from there just got a report.......Doesn't seem like it should be snowing ...lol
[Sam McCall] 5:50 pm: I usually wait until I can get free shipping and they (dept stores) usually always have that right after Thanksgiving.
 5:50 pm: Great way to miss the crowds!
[Sam McCall] 5:50 pm: Yes, I love to shop on line
[brenda] 5:51 pm: When you google black friday deals and it comes up with all the different web sites which one is the best to look at to see all the deals such as walmart kmart goodys and etc
[Sam McCall] 5:51 pm: No crowds, no lines, and no driving around searching for a parking place, ugh, I hate that part too
[VincentFireCapt] 5:52 pm: Parking I think is the worse part of it..
[Sam McCall] 5:52 pm: Vincent, IT IS, lol
 5:52 pm: Brenda, click and see what you find! Usually I go with the first one in search results as a start...
[VincentFireCapt] 5:52 pm: lol
[Sam McCall] 5:52 pm: People will run you over for a parking place
[brenda] 5:53 pm: thanks so much stacy you have done a great job this week on giving us tips on how to save money and who could not use more money in todays time
[Sam McCall] 5:53 pm: I agree with everyone else about Walmart, I think they are the least expensive on most things
 5:54 pm: Thank you, Brenda, that was the whole point of this series. I hope you have found it helpful.
[Sam McCall] 5:54 pm: Stacy, do you have another series for next week planned?
[phyllie] 5:55 pm: I am concerned about buying toys for my granddaughter. She is a baby and put everything in her mouth. All the toys I've looked at for her are all made in China. I don't trust those toys because of the lead paint. Any ideas??
 5:55 pm: No. I will be back on my regular shift for the Morning Show. But who knows when you'll see me in the evenings again? You never know when I might pop up!!!
[VincentFireCapt] 5:55 pm: lol..
[Sam McCall] 5:55 pm: We'll be looking for you..lol
[VincentFireCapt] 5:55 pm: Bill looks like fun to work with, You guys crack me up...
 5:56 pm: No, Phyllie but I can tell you the FDA just opened its first out of the country office in China. Two more are scheduled to open there soon. Also, one is to open in India. The whole goal is to keep American consumers safe.
[atbarr] 5:57 pm: We try our best to NOT buy anything made in China. It's hard to do.
 5:57 pm: Thanks Vincent. He is really fun to work with - very smart, very funny, and quite the professional.
[Sam McCall] 5:58 pm: Another thing about buying gift cards from restaraunts is that some places offer you an additional card up to so much for free, like $5 or $20, depending on how much you spend and you can always keep the free one for yourself, lol:D
[VincentFireCapt] 5:58 pm: he's cracks me up ...He gets Barb going sometimes and its so funny..lol
 5:59 pm: We have a great morning crew- both in front of the camera and behind the scenes. Any of you who haven't watch in the morning - check us out!
[VincentFireCapt] 6:00 pm: I usually get up pretty early, and its good to sit and watch while having the first cup of Java...
 6:00 pm: Well, everyone - I'll say goodnight now. Thanks again for your time and comments. We'll talk tomorrow. Same time, sme place!
[justin] 6:00 pm: Hello Everyone!
[Sam McCall] 6:00 pm: Stacy, you leave us to early.