Black Friday shoppers out hunting for deals in the DC area

Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping
The long line of shoppers outside a Lululemon store ahead of the 6 a.m. opening at Tyson Corner Center. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping
Gates on the verge of opening at Tysons Corner Center on Black Friday as the line continued to grow outside the Lululemon store. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping
Shoppers walking past a Dr. Martens store inside Tysons Corner Center. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
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Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping
Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping
Tysons Corner Center Black Friday shopping

Black Friday shopping is already underway in the D.C. area early Friday morning after shoppers filled their stomachs with Thanksgiving food.

Inside the Tysons Corner Center mall in Virginia, there was a long line in front of a Lululemon store with more than 100 people when the gates opened at 6 a.m.

“We heard that there’s a lot of good sales compared to the last couple of years,” one shopper told WTOP. “So we really wanted to come in-person this year.”

Many of the shoppers came with lists. “We have a list, but we’re probably not gonna follow it really well,” said a teenager, shopping with two friends.

While some have advertised bargains in mind, others want to see the merchandise for themselves: “We’ll know it when we see it,” said a mother, shopping for clothes with her daughter.

Standing nearby, the teenager’s father didn’t feel overly put out by being in the mall at a time he would normally be asleep.

”We look forward to it — it’s a family affair,” he said. “It’s almost a tradition at this point,” added his daughter.

Consumers these days are watching out for their savings and credit card debts, given the uncertainty with the economic situation, more specifically, the fear of inflation. But retailers are offering big deals to attract them to buy their products as it’s expected to be the busiest shopping day of the year.

In the past few years, there have been a rise of online shopping, largely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite malls and in-person bouncing back to a decent amount of crowds, online shopping isn’t going away anytime soon.

Around 182 million people nationwide plan to shop in-stores and online throughout the Thanksgiving weekend, including Cyber Monday, according to a projection made by the National Retail Federation.

Those who spoke to WTOP said they’ve already done some Black Friday shopping online, but there’s something about the experience that’s got people here and enjoying the search for bargains.

“There’s something neat about touching, feeling and being out with family this time of year,” said Jesse Benites, director of property management for Tysons Corner Center.

The shopping at Tysons mall will go on until 10 p.m. on Friday.

The Associated Press and WTOP’s Tadiwos Abedje contributed to this story.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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