Black Friday shopping looks different amid pandemic

Coronavirus New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a Black Friday unlike any other. With New Mexicans under lockdown, the giant shopping tradition is not the same.

The statewide shutdown is a huge hurdle for businesses that rely on the holiday shopping season but they’re doing their best. Most stores are closed Friday because of the public health order, but big box stores with Black Friday deals like Target, Walmart, and Costco remain open as they are considered essential.

Most Black Friday shoppers will tell you they’re used to waiting in long lines, but this year the attitude is a little different. “We’ve done this before and they’ve been way worse… we waited in line for maybe five or 10 minutes and we went in, got what we needed and that was pretty much it,” said shopper Eric Gonzales.

Gonzales says this year’s Black Friday was much more mellow than in years past and says there was no pushing or fighting over products.

There was also a line at Target directly next door. With COVID-19 cases still in the thousands, Target is only allowed to let 75 people into the building at once and is also offering curbside pickup for anyone who orders online. There was a small line outside of the GameStop on Coors and Irving on Friday morning as gamers waited to pick up their purchases.

“I seen [sic] GameStop had the PS5’s and that was crazy, so I’m glad I wasn’t one of those people,” said shopper Nick Goralczyk.

Small Business Saturday is tomorrow and while most local stores are forced to remain closed under the current public health order, a lot of them are offering alternative shopping options. Organ Mountain Outfitters and Andie and Edie in Nob Hill are both offering online shopping.

“On Small Business Saturday, find a way to spend money online, curbside, here in town. That’s what’s needed most,” said Ernie C de Baca with the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

In the Albuquerque metro, the city is encouraging people to shop locally on Small Business Saturday. “You can shop online and then pick up your purchase all at once in the Albuquerque Museum parking lot on December 5,” said Shelle Sanchez with Cultural Services.

The city is holding a Grab & Go Gift Stop Market with 50 local vendors this weekend. The Railyards Market is also going virtual from December 7 to December 13. The deadline to shop online at the grab and go market is December 2 and all items can be picked up on December 5.

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