It's the beginning of the Christmas shopping season and consumers are anticipating this weekend's Black Friday sales. Shoppers can expect to see sales starting as early as Red Thursday, carried into Black Friday, Saturday, Sunday and will follow through to Cyber Monday. Although Black Friday is nowhere near as big of a deal in Canada as it is in the U.S., Canadian retailers are still expecting a significant increase in traffic. Douglas Porter, the chief economist for BMO Financial Group, suggests that "the weakness of the Canadian dollar relative to the greenback is keeping Black Friday shoppers north of the border this year, as it has since 2013".

Shoppers gearing up for Black Friday sales. Photo courtesy of: Global News.

Gerry Storch, chief executive officer of Hudson’s Bay Company, adds, “Black Friday is one of those days when people view shopping as a sport – it’s entertainment to go out and try to snag the great deals.” And he couldn't be more right. Moneris, the largest credit and debit card processor in Canada, predicts an 8 per cent increase in spending during Black Friday, on top of the 9.6 per cent increase they saw last year. Consumers are planning a week in advance for Black Friday, scouring the internet for the best deals. A survey from Save.ca says that the average amount of shoppers plan on spending around $350, with their focus mostly being on electronics, clothing and accessories. And if you're not a fan of the hustle and bustle on Black Friday, have no fear! You can just shop from the comfort of your home on Cyber Monday. By Kelsey Seepersad

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