From ABC NEWS GOOD MORNING AMERICA AND YAHOO! NEWS
Walmart is kicking off Black Friday shopping earlier than ever this year, opening stores at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.
"In addition to offering amazing low prices on the season's top gifts, Walmart is taking the historic step to ensure wishlist items like the Apple iPad2 are available for customers during a special one-hour event on Thanksgiving," the world's largest retailer said in a statement today.
"We know it's frustrating for customers to shop on Black Friday and not get the items they want," said Duncan Mac Naughton, chief merchandising and marketing officer, Walmart U.S. "This year, for the first time ever, customers that shop during Walmart's one-hour event will be guaranteed to have three of the most popular items under their tree at a great low price."
Other retailers will also be opening earlier, including Sears at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, moved up from 4 a.m. on Black Friday last year. Kmart will be open Thanksgiving Day 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., then it will close and reopen 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. Macy's, Kohl's and Best Buy open at midnight; Toys R Us hasn't announced its plans. Advice on how to snag the best deals.
To help convince folks to head out to the store after dinner, Walmart said it will guarantee that customers who are inside the store and in line between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. can get these deals:
Apple iPad ®2 16GB with Wi-Fi - $399 plus get a $75 Walmart Gift Card
Emerson ® 32? 720p LCD TV - $148
LG ® Blu-ray™ Player - $38
"If any of these items happen to sell out before 11 p.m. local time, Walmart will offer a Guarantee Card for the item which must be paid for by midnight and registered online. The product will then be shipped to the store where it was purchased for the customer to pick up before Christmas," the retailer said.