Difference Between Black Friday and Thanksgiving

The uninterrupted number of hectic working days makes the unpredictable race of humankind unhealthy and void from the inside, both physically and spiritually.

At such times, comes as a savior, everyone’s preferred holiday, with a tag alongside the desire and chance for shopping.

Well, the 4th week of November brings us such beautifully crafted jovial days. Black Friday provides the opportunity for customers to enjoy the day with an excess of shopping and hyping them up with exciting sales and offers.

On the other hand, it acts as a strict rise in the profits of the retailers. Thanksgiving also serves as a moral day, allowing everyone to forward their gratitude and recognize the sacrifices and blessings of the last year.  

Black Friday vs Thanksgiving 

The main difference between Black Friday and Thanksgiving is that Black Friday is mostly a day for shopaholics, whereas Thanksgiving is a moral day of forwarding gratitude towards the elderly. Thanksgiving has a cultural significance and is deeply rooted in the religion of Christianity and its beliefs.  

Black Friday vs Thanksgiving 1

On Black Friday, customers are lured in with the help of exciting offers of sales and numerous discounts on clothes, menageries, and various other products. This day is considered the unofficial start of the Christmas shopping season.

Traditionally, retailers would even go to the extent of opening their shops at 5 a.m. in the morning to get the greatest number of customers. However, the scenario has changed over time and with growing technology.

With a cellphone in everyone’s hand, Black Friday has become more profitable for e-commerce shopping sites. Thanksgiving has a religious and cultural significance, whereas Black Friday does not.

Thanksgiving is celebrated by feasting on various dishes where the turkey serves as the main course.

Thanksgiving is an annual holiday celebrated to commemorate the harvest and blessings of the past year. Thanksgiving, according to legend, dates back to 1621 and was inspired by a harvest feast.  

Comparison Table Between Black Friday and Thanksgiving  

Parameters of Comparison  Black Friday Thanksgiving    
Definition  Black Friday is considered the first day of the Christmas shopping season.  Thanksgiving is a day of feasting and giving thanks to the divine energy.   
 Celebrated on Black Friday is celebrated on the fourth Friday of November.  Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November in the US and the second Monday of October in Canada.    
Holiday  Black Friday is not a national holiday.  Thanksgiving is a national holiday.  
Significance  Black Friday is more of a profit-making day for both parties. (Customers and retailers.)  Thanksgiving has both religious and cultural significance.    
Activities  Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year.  On Thanksgiving, friends and relatives gather and joyfully feast on traditional dishes like stuffed bread, roasted turkey, pumpkin pie, etc.    

What is Black Friday?  

Black Friday, celebrated on the following day of Thanksgiving, i.e., the fourth Friday of November, is joyously considered the day of shopping and also the unofficial beginning of the shopping holidays or Christmas shopping.

The term “Black Friday” traces its significance back to the early 1960s, when Philadelphia police officers coined the phrase “Black Friday” to describe the chaos that ensued when large numbers of suburban tourists came into the city to start their holiday shopping and, after some years, to watch the annual Army-Navy football game on Saturday.

They reached their destination mostly on Friday evening. Later on, down the years, it became a tradition of visiting shopping complexes as people in present days mostly live for fulfilling desires and luxuries than to just live with basic needs.

It is a profit-making day for both customers and retailers, as they get to fulfill their shopping desires and profit goals, respectively. The vehicular demand is equally high on this day as people from various areas travel to various shopping destinations.

As a whole, it is a day of economic rise for both online and offline stores, transport businesses, and the fulfillment of desires for luxuries.  

What is Thanksgiving?  

Culture imposes us with unquantifiable moral values, which make the race of humans kind and loving. Thanksgiving is no different in this aspect.

It is a day with graceful religious and cultural aspects and significance. Relatives and friends gather in masses to celebrate this day by feasting and exchanging gestures of gratitude and love for each other.

The Thanksgiving feast includes various traditional dishes such as roasted turkeys, pumpkin pies, potatoes, bread stuffing, cranberries, cranberry sauce, etc.

Thanksgiving is based on a harvest feast shared by the English colonists of Plymouth (Pilgrims) and the Wampanoag (now known as Massachusetts) people in 1621.

There was no specific evidence from the recovered letters of the Pilgrims why Turkey was adapted as the main course. However, Turkey had become a favorite dish to serve on such occasions by the turn of the nineteenth century.

This was due to a number of factors. To begin with, the birds were numerous. At the time of European contact, one expert claimed that there were at least 10 million turkeys in America.

Second, on a family farm, turkeys were virtually always ready to be slaughtered.

While live cows and hens were valuable as long as they produced milk and eggs, turkeys were often bred solely for their meat and could thus be easily slaughtered. Third, a single turkey can usually feed a family of four.  

Main Differences Between Black Friday and Thanksgiving  

  1. The difference between Black Friday and Thanksgiving lies in the significance of these days. Black Friday is typically a day of fun and joy, characterized by extensive shopping, whereas Thanksgiving is a day of exchanging gratitude towards relatives and friends for appropriate contributions at various stages of life and a successful harvest.  
  2. Black Friday is celebrated on the fourth Friday of November, and Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November in the US and on the second Monday of October in Canada
  3. Black Friday is not a national holiday and, in fact, is a busy, jam-packed day for everybody, whereas Thanksgiving is celebrated as a national holiday with friends and family.  
  4. The major activity on Black Friday is extensive shopping with friends and family. Shopping for various products can be considered, starting from clothing, menageries, furniture, house decorative, appliances. Whereas, major activity on Thanksgiving is to enjoy with relatives and friends a feast full of various items, such as roasted turkey, potatoes, bread stuffing, pumpkin pie, cranberries, and cranberry sauce. 
  5. A rise in the economy is seen on Black Friday. However, on Thanksgiving, a rise in the improvement of emotional and spiritual bonds between relatives and friends is evident. 
Difference Between Black Friday and Thanksgiving


Black Friday, celebrated on the following day of Thanksgiving, is a day of fun and giggles. People from various cities and towns gather in masses at the shopping complexes.

The significance of this day lies in performing grand shopping activities, starting with buying clothes, home decorative pieces, menageries, appliances, toys, and much more.

Black Friday is not just a day for customers but also for the retailers who earn huge profits. In fact, the term “Black Friday” is used to refer to the mass gathering and profit scale of the day.

On the other hand, Thanksgiving is a national holiday with more of a significant religious and cultural background.

On this day, blood relatives and bond relatives gather together to enjoy a traditional feast of various food items such as bread stuffing, potatoes, roasted turkey, cranberry sauce, etc.

The significance of this day lies more on the moral side, with people exchanging gestures of gratitude and love for the previous year’s successful harvest and contributions. 


  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969698912001233
  2. https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/09590551111144905/full/html
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