Most Americans in two-day holiday shopping marathon

11:49 AM, Nov 29, 2013   |    comments
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NORTH BERGEN, N.J. (AP) - Some shoppers are trying again this morning, after deciding that they didn't want to deal with long lines outside stores on Thanksgiving.

A New Jersey man says he was at Wal-Mart last night, hoping to get an iPad Mini, but gave up when he saw the long line. He was back this morning, this time hoping to score a deal for an iPhone, which came with a $75 gift card.

The CEO of Macy's says there were 15,000 people in line for the opening of the company's flagship store in New York at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving. That compares with the 11,000 people who were waiting last year when the store opened at midnight.

Maine is one of three states that has laws preventing large stores from opening on Thanksgiving Day.

At Toys R Us, the company's chief merchandising operator says crowds were biggest when stores opened at 5 p.m. yesterday, then were quieter from 3 a.m. to 5 a.m. Then, another spike came as more deals kicked off. Popular items included classic toys, like a train table set at half price.

As another wave of shoppers made their way into the North Point Mall in Alpharetta, Ga., at 5:30 a.m. today, they were already hours behind shoppers like Jessica Astalos -- who said she'd been at it for six hours.

It's still not clear whether the earlier openings will lead shoppers to spend more over the two days, or simply spread sales between Thursday and Friday. But some big chains are already saying it's a success. Wal-Mart says it's sold 2.8 million towels, two million TVs, 1.4 million tablets, 300,000 bicycles and 1.9 million dolls.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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