11 November update
From tomorrow, 12 November, NOW is offering its Sports Membership TV deal for £19 per month – a discount of £7 per month, which racks up to £72 over a 12-month term.
You can also get £1 per month off its Entertainment Membership and Cinema membership TV deals as well as its Super Fibre broadband deal, which will ring in at £21 per month, £4.99 per month and £4.99 per month respectively.
From today Virgin Media is knocking £19 per month off its broadband deals for a saving of £342 over the course of an 18-month contract:
- M200 Fibre Only with average speeds of 108 megabits per second is now £25 per month
- M200 Fibre Only with average speeds of 213Mbps is now £31 per month
- M350 Fibre Only with average speeds of 362Mbps is now £37 per month
- M500 Fibre Only with average speeds of 516Mbps is now £43 per month
Each has a set up fee of £35 and will go up in price to £44, £50, £56 and £62 at the end of the 18-month contract.
Its Broadband 10Mb tariff is now £27.99 and its Fibre Essential 36Mb is now £28.99, both saving you £48 over a two-year term.
Black Friday 2021 – How we got here
Originally a US phenomenon, Black Friday has become a permanent fixture in the UK calendar over the last decade and now marks one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
This year, it falls on 26 November.
If you’re looking to take advantage of Black Friday in 2021, here’s some background on how it came about – and what to expect.
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is when retailers offer some of their best deals across services and merchandise ranging from broadband and mobile plans to clothes, furniture, holidays and much more.
Falling on the day after Thanksgiving in the US, Black Friday takes place on the last Friday in November.
Where did it come from?
Reports of the event’s origins vary, but the term can be traced as far back as the 1950s when swathes of workers in the US would call in sick after Thanksgiving, lining up for themselves a four-day weekend.
Police highlighted how busy shops were on this Friday and it was not long before retailers dropped their prices exclusively on this date.
Later, in the 1970s, the term ‘Black Friday’ featured in The New York Times to describe Philadelphia’s busiest shopping day.
By the 1980s, the term Black Friday had taken on different associations such as with retailers’ bank accounts which were said to tip from being in the red – in debt – to black – in profit.
In the UK, ‘Black Friday’ had a different meaning. It was the last working day of December and synonymous with paramedics and police finding themselves overloaded with drunken party-goers.
But today, Black Friday is widely understood to mean the same thing on both sides of the Atlantic. Now in the UK, it has overtaken Boxing Day as the busiest shopping day of the year, with British retailers following the lead of US-owned brands such as Asda and Amazon.
How much is sold?
While Black Friday has seen unprecedented sales volumes year-on-year, increasingly this is not limited to the day itself. Sales have expanded to include the whole week and the following Monday – dubbed Cyber Monday – for high volumes of online sales.
As an indication, sales jumped by 7% between the period of 25 November and 2 December in 2019, compared to the same time the year before, according to Barclaycard, which processes around £1 of every £3 spent in the UK.
However, figures fell in 2020 by more than 10% compared to the previous year due to Covid-19 pandemic restrictions forcing retailers to close and employers to lay off or furlough their staff.
While supply chain issues, which have posed problems such as a global shortage of semiconductors for the electronics sector may limit available product, it remains to be seen whether sales this Black Friday will reach pre-pandemic levels.
Tesco, Amazon and Argos are all among the giants that have confirmed they will be taking part.
Watch out for deals
This Black Friday will present shoppers with the perfect opportunity to stock up on Christmas presents as well as more perennial items that could be up for grabs at deep discounts.
But finding specific deals among the countless online bargains has become an art form in itself. The savviest shoppers are graduating from just ‘knowing where to look’ to strategic planning of which webpages to check exactly and when.
Getting in early is always a bonus and many retailers will start announcing their offers as soon as this week, as well as in the run-up to 26 November.
As a taster, Tesco Mobile is offering £10 off a month on its iPhone Pro Max deal. It rings in at £49.99 per month with unlimited calls, texts and data.
It is also discounting its Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 unlimited calls and texts plus 6GB of data deal by £5 to £29.99 a month.
We’ll keep updating this page with more Black Friday broadband and mobile phone deals as and when they are announced.