NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Retailers are giving early birds a chance to get a head start on Black Friday shopping.
At a Kmart in Secaucus, New Jersey shoppers were out in full force.
“I am here for the deals. The good deals and the sweet people that bring everybody together,” one shopper said.
The Romero family from Union City was shopping for food.
“We just don’t find the time to do it during the week because there’s so much going on,” said Amanda Romero. “We always do it on Thanksgiving. It’s kind of crazy but it’s just what we do.”
Frank Villa Vicencio has more family visiting than he planned for.
“We have to get air mattresses because of extra guests in the house that we were not expecting,” Vicencio said.
Rasheen Rice was out working hard.
“This was on my schedule. I don’t really mind 8-5 still have the rest of the day to eat and be with family and I’m getting paid so I’m good,” Rice said.
Mark Farensbach, of Edgewater, scored a PlayStation 4 at Toys “R” Us.
“They only had, I guess, six of them, because I was the second-to-last person getting it,” he said.
This year, his family’s Thanksgiving dinner wasn’t had at home.
“We strategically planned it. The restaurant is over there, and we knew we had a 1:30 reservation, we’d be done by 4-o-clock, and we shot over here at 4:15,” Farensbach said.
Those who decided not to wait in line said they still found plenty to buy.
“Just pulled right in, I didn’t do the wait. I did that last year and it was a waste of time. So we’re just trying to get the things before they get off the shelves,” said Nicole Barletti.
Arnoldo Hernandez said he was first in line and got what he came for.
“Making sure that we get the Barbie doll house. My daughter would have lost it if I didn’t get the Barbie doll house,” he said.
The Queens Center mall in Elmhurst was packed with those hoping to bring home bargains. It’s open for 24 hours, though some stores will close at 2 a.m.
Some stores were advertising 40 and 50 percent off. In some cases, the discounts were even deeper.
“Sixty-five percent off. Really, really good deal,” one man said.
“Beautiful. Everything 50, 75 percent off,” shopper Judy Ramos said. “Beautiful, wonderful.”
Some stores opened at 6 a.m. Thursday, but experts said shoppers shouldn’t feel pressured to leave dinner early.
“They’re offering the same deals online as in store, so you really don’t have to leave your house to shop for your Christmas gifts on Thanksgiving Day,” said Fitch Ratings Senior Director Carla Norfleet Taylor.
And the discounts will likely be extended past Black Friday.
“The fourth quarter is a very important quarter for retailers so they’re going to push sales throughout the season, so you have time,” Taylor said.
Some stores rolled out the specials even before Thanksgiving attracting shoppers eager to get some of their holiday gift buying out of the way.
Those who prefer shopping online, experts say make sure you’re using a secure website and be cautious of any suspicious emails with shopping deals.
The National Retail Federation estimates 164 million Americans will do some shopping this weekend, either in person or online.