Black Friday is starting early — 5 sales I'm watching next month

A laptop, blender, Fitbit, Apple TV, and robot vacuum shown against blue background
(Image credit: Future)

The average shopper thinks that Black Friday deals start in November, but here's a little secret: They actually start in October. I've been tracking retailers and deals for over 10 years and 2023 is going down as the the first year that not one, but multiple major retailers will offer Black Friday previews in October. 

Amazon was the first major retailer to make a push for October when it launched its Prime Early Access sale last year. This year it's back with its Prime Big Deal Days event. The 48-hour sale will start on October 10 and promises Prime Day deals on everything from Dyson vacuums to Amazon's own line of Fire TVs. 

But Amazon isn't the only retailer offering an October preview. Best Buy, Walmart, Target, and Home Depot have also confirmed Black Friday sneak peeks for October. With so much happening next month, it's easy to get overwhelmed or lost in the sea of deals. So I've created this cheat sheet of sales to expect along with deals I recommend looking out for. 

Best Buy Holiday Sneak Peek (October 1-29)

An illustration of presents with Best Buy logo on blue background

(Image credit: Best Buy)

Best Buy is one of my go-to stores for OLED TV deals and Apple deals. The retailer is going all out in October with various sales happening throughout the month. Many of the sales will be exclusive to My Best Buy Plus ($49/year) and My Best Buy Total ($179/year) members. (Check out my primer on My Best Buy memberships for a breakdown on pricing and benefits). However, I recommend keeping an eye on their 48-hour flash sale. That'll be the sale that coincides with Amazon's Prime Big Deal Days and it'll most likely be the sale to offer the deepest and broadest price cuts. 

Pro tip: I recommend watching Best Buy closely for deals on Apple gear (MacBooks) and deals on QLED and OLED TVs. The retailer has also offered great laptop and gaming deals in the past. 

  • October 6-8: Samsung deals
  • October 10-11: 48-hour flash sale
  • October 13-15: Microsoft deals 
  • October 20-22: Weekend gaming deals
  • October 27-29: Black Friday early access

(For more ways to save, check out our guide to this week's best Best Buy coupon codes and top Best Buy weekend sales).

Target Circle Week (October 1-7)

The Target Circle logo - a cartoon picture of a white dog with a red ring around one of his eyes. The background is red

(Image credit: Target)

If your budget is a little tighter this holiday season, you'll want to check out Target's Circle Week deals event. The sale runs from October 1 through October 7, offering "must-have gifts under $25." Target has confirmed it will have toys under $25, hundreds of beauty, apparel, and accessories starting at $5, and stocking stuffers from $1. The retailer will also bring back its "Deal of the Day" starting October 1 through December 24 with discounts on Apple, Nespresso, Dyson, and Nintendo. It's hard to tell what items will be on sale without more specific details, but it's a sale I'll be keeping an eye on. Most of the deals will be for Target Circle members (it's free to join). You can join Target Circle at (For more ways to save, check out our guide to this week's best Target promo codes).

Pro tip: Target tends to offer great deals on toys, video games, and accessories. It's a great go-to if you're looking for stocking stuffers, but aren't quite sure what you want.

Home Depot Decor Days (October 5-9)

Home Depot Black Friday deals

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

On October 5 Home Depot will launch its first ever Home Depot Decor Days. The retailer claims the event will offer the "biggest style savings of the year" with deals on furniture, home decor, and more. This is an inaugural event, so I'm curious to see how steep the discounts will be. 

It's worth nothing that the event — which runs through October 9 — will be held online only. That said, you can purchase online and choose to pick up in-store (or you can get free/flexible delivery if that's easier). Home Depot is also reminding shoppers that they offer hassle-free returns in-store or by mail. 

(For more ways to save, check out our guide to this week's best Home Depot promo codes). 

Pro tip: Based on Home Depot's announcement, it appears the sale will focus on furniture and decor and not so much on appliances. Make sure to keep an eye on Home Depot's decor page for any early deals. 

Walmart Deals Holiday Kickoff (October 9-12)

Walmart Deals Holiday Kickoff dates against blue background

(Image credit: Walmart)

This is the first year Walmart will have a Black Friday preview event in October, so naturally I'll be keeping a very close eye on this sale. (The retailer usually launches its Walmart Deals for Days event in early November). Walmart has even released a list of confirmed deals it'll offer next month. A deal that isn't confirmed, but that I recall seeing during previous Black Friday previews, is 50% off Walmart Plus membership. There are lots of member benefits, especially around the holidays, so if you've been curious to join, this could be the best time. Otherwise, below are my top confirmed Walmart deals for October.

Pro tip: Look for discounts on Walmart Plus membership. The retailer also tends to offer aggressive deals on 4K TVs, apparel, and kitchen appliances. That said, avoid Apple deals at Walmart — they're usually cheaper elsewhere. 

For more ways to save, check out our guide to this week's best Walmart promo codes).

Prime Big Deal Days (October 10-11)

An Amazon box held by two hands with Prime Big Deal Days dates

(Image credit: Amazon)

Last year's Prime Early Access Sale was a little underwhelming. However, with so much competition in 2023, I'm expecting bigger deals from this year's Prime Big Deal Days. If you're looking for Apple Watch deals, Amazon is the store I recommend you shop at. Last year, Amazon knocked $50 off the Apple Watch 8 last October. One of my Black Friday predictions for 2023 is that Amazon will once again knock $50 off the Apple Watch 9 during its Prime Big Deal Days. I'll also be eyeing Amazon for TV deals, iPad deals, and deals on kitchen appliances. However, I expect Amazon's October event will offer killer deals on Amazon hardware. This includes 4K Fire TVs, Fire tablets, and Echo speakers. (For more ways to save, check out our guide to this week's best Amazon promo codes and top Amazon deals). 

Pro tip: The best Amazon deals next month will likely focus on Amazon's own hardware. I also expect Amazon to offer great deals on Apple's iPad and Apple Watch lineup. Keep an eye on Amazon's invite-only deals. On Prime Day they offered a killer deal on a 43-inch Fire TV for $99. They haven't announced such a deal for October, but I wouldn't be surprised if they sneak one in last minute. 

Louis Ramirez

As deals editor-in-chief at Tom’s Guide, Louis is constantly looking for ways to avoid paying full price for the latest gadgets, appliances, and apparel. With over 10 years of deals-hunting experience, Louis price checks against multiple retailers and searches high and low for the best deals to bring readers. He's also always on the look out for the best coupon codes to use when shopping. A born-and-bred New Yorker, Louis is also an avid swimmer and marathoner. His work has appeared on Gizmodo, CNET, and Time Out New York.