Black Friday is hours away.

If you're a rookie to this madhouse shopping experience, read these tips before you leave the house. Or you may end up spending more cash when you could be getting a better deal. Or you'll end up getting a cold for no good reason. 

1. Read the Print & Online Ads

Before you leave the house tomorrow, or tonight make sure you look through the paper or online to get an idea of where the best deals are.

2. Use Your Thinker - Evaluate the Deals

Not every deal is a deal. Make sure you compare 'deal' prices to original prices or other sales.

3. Don't Judge A Book By It's Cover - Buy a Good Product

Name brand products can be crappy too. Do some research on what you want to buy. See what other consumers are saying about it.

4. Look For More Discounts

Sometimes you can get a sale on an existing Black Friday deal. More savings means less money.

5. Plan Accordingly - Come Early or Wait A Bit

Some stores will offer special prices if you come in at a specific time, such as between 5 a.m. and 11 a.m. Check the ads for "time restricted" specials.

6. Use The Power Of The Internet

Some Black Friday deals at retail may be available at the store's web site. Before leaving the house in the wee hours of Friday morning go to their stores web site. You could end up saving yourself a trip.

7. Check the Return Policy - Then Double Check It

You've heard of look before you leap. This is check before you pay. Before buying, find out the store's return policy. Consumer World says some stores discourage returns by imposing restocking fees or placing frequent "returners" on blacklists.

8. Get a Gift Receipt - In Case The Piano Tie Isn't Dads Thing

You can make a return easier for gift recipients by asking the store to place a receipt in a gift box. Without it, the store may not accept it.

9. Use the Right Credit Card - Benefit From The Rewards

Some credit cards offer free benefits such as a return protection guarantee or purchase points that can be redeemed for other products. This could come in handy when buying a big item like a HDTV.

10. Save More With Price Guarantees

After buying the high-def set, keep your eye on the TV's price at other stores in the next month. Some stores will give you the difference between your price and a competitor's price during the holiday season.

Good luck shopper. May the power of the elves be with you.