Walmart is opening Thursday night and other stores are opening sooner than ever and even releasing once super secret Black Friday deals.
It used to be easy -- eat Thanksgiving dinner and then camp outside your favorite store. Now Black Friday sales are starting sooner than ever and it could change the way Americans shop on that biggest of all sales days.
At Macy's and Target you will not have to wait long to start Black Friday shopping. The stores are opening at 12:01am Friday, just as Thanksgiving ends. Not to be outdone, Walmart is opening at 10pm Thanksgiving Day.
Not only are stores opening early they are also publishing their Black Friday deals. Unheard of even a year ago when retailers would go to court to have leaked Black Friday ads removed from websites.
"I think it's better because that way the consumer is more informed on where to get the best deal, because they want to spend more time with their family instead of running around town to get the best deal," said shopper Jennifer Sanchez.
Walmart is proudly announcing an Xbox 360 with Kinect console will cost $199, plus you'll get a $50 gift card that cuts to price to just $150. It has created a dilemma for shopper Juan Barcenas.
He said, "I was getting ready to spend $300, so now you hear that and it makes you think twice about waiting, maybe I will wait."
The early hours and early deal disclosure can be attributed to the economy, according to Partha Krishnamurthy from the University of Houston's Bauer College of Business.
He said, "I think that customers are still holding on to their wallets a little bit more and looking for good deals."
Krishnamurthy says stores will get extra hours to sell and if it works, expect to see Black Friday sales start before the turkey hits the table on Thanksgiving.
Krishnamurthy said, "When a bigger player like Walmart does this with a big array of products like this, it will change industry's behavior."
Walmart and other retailers are also giving you deals over the web on Thanksgiving, so there is a good chance you will not even have to worry about going to the stores at all.
If you are planning on hitting the stores for the Black Friday deals, keep in mind that the best offers are still for only limited quantities. In some cases, limited supply could be 100 or more, but often it is less than 10 on the door busters.