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By Krystina Gustafson, CNBC

The first step in snagging the best Black Friday deals is simple: You have to create a game plan.

While that sounds easy enough — after all, all you have to do is figure out which stores have the biggest discounts on the items you want, and when they open — it's getting more complicated to do so every year.

As some retailers push their holiday door-buster hours into Thanksgiving Day — or in RadioShack's case, the Wednesday before — figuring out a plan of action can create a bigger headache than dealing with bickering relatives.

Further complicating matters is the fact that some retailers — like Kohl's, for example — will hold marathon sales that keep their stores open longer than 24 hours. Others, like Best Buy, will open for a few hours on Thanksgiving Day, and close before kicking off a second round of deals the following day.

Travel Industry Elbows Its Way Into the Hot Deal Conversation

And while the lights will never turn off at Wal-Mart, which is open 24 hours, door-buster deals don't kick off until 6 p.m. Thanksgiving.

While local hours may vary by market, click here to see an exhaustive list of retailers' Thanksgiving and Black Friday hours.