As Black Friday came around in Dallas this year, things looked different than they did in the past. According to the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram, this year’s crowd of shoppers was smaller and quieter than ever before.
On Friday morning, they spoke to shoppers at the North East Mall in Hurst, who said the shopping event was not the same this year.
“I remember coming before, and the deals were so good, you knew you could not pass it up,” Stephanie Harvey told Star-Telegram. “You’d probably end up spending more money because stuff was so cheap, and now, I’m here looking at things going, ‘Oh. I’m going to pass. It’s not really worth the discounts this time.’”
Harvey said shopping at the mall during Black Friday is usually chaotic.
“There used to be a lot more crowds. I remember there was a period where things opened up at midnight, but it opened at 6 [a.m.] this year which was nice. … I was never into the fighting,” she explained.
Another shopper, Tabitha Turner, told Star-Telegram it was tradition to visit the mall each year with her family.
“We do it all [Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and online shopping], but honestly, this is fun. We have a plan, and we get the papers out after Thanksgiving dinner, and we all sit down and circle, come up with plans and lists,” she said. “This year is different though, like Target wasn’t open yesterday. This one is not as fun as it’s been in the past, I think because COVID has changed things, but it’s still fun … to spend time with family.”
According to Turner, her family did not mind how quiet the shopping was this year.
She told Star-Telegram, “It’s so empty and bare, which is kind of nice. There’s not crazy people, although we did just see a lady with a stroller full of bags and no child. The crowds are much easier. Lines are simple, which is not quite as fun. I always enjoyed the people fighting over parking spaces and yelling at people for the last toy. … We’re missing the hustle and bustle of all the crazy people. … It was a blast, and it was fun to have to deal with all the craziness.”
There were other shoppers on Friday morning, who said they missed how the event used to be. Amanda Trapp mentioned that she did not like how slow it was this year.
“I used to get up at like 3 o’clock in the morning and go, so it’s definitely different, but I guess it’s okay because we slept in a little bit today,” she told Star-Telegram. “It’s way slower. There’s not nearly as many people. I think everyone misses what [it was]. Everyone’s so distant now.”
This year’s Black Friday event also came with supply chain issues, according to CBS. They also reported that many North Texas shoppers had made many of their holiday purchases before Thanksgiving. This year, several large retailers had empty or near-empty parking lots for most of the day.