The Black Friday Friends Club Is Open To Anyone & Isn’t For Everyone

This is not a test. This is Black Friday Friends Club. What you are seeing – or not seeing – is real. Over the past few days, Privada Cigar Club has released a very brief series of visuals that have built excitement but reveal no new information about the project known only as the Black Friday Friends Club. The not knowing part can be frustrating, but it’s also a giant part of the fun that so many have come to expect from Privada during this little slice of the calendar. Curating rare, aged, and limited experiences has been at the core of the Privada Cigar Club mission since its inception in 2017, but there may be no time of year where this is more evident than right now, during Thanksgiving.

Privada’s founder Brian Desind always attempts to provide more value to the members than the year prior. As a result, there have been some unintended side effects. In what now feels like a holiday tradition to many, cigar fans descend on the PCC site in such high numbers during the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend that the web companies and payment processors think the site is being attacked.

Last year, trying to avoid another impressive but annoying stoppage, the Privada team notified all of their vendor partners well in advance. After being assured that all the systems could handle the volume – not unlike the recent Ticketmaster debacle – the site hung on for a few minutes longer than the the previous year before the payment processing company ultimately stopped processing payments. As it turns out, the company being used at the time set what they thought was a really high max limit and then proceeded to close the office, eventually sending someone back to work and restoring service over that holiday weekend. The takeaway here is what Privada may do better than anyone else is defy expectations.

Fortunately, a few eagle-eyed Cigar Public readers noticed something interesting on the PCC site earlier this week and posted it for the members of the club’s private facebook group ahead of today’s launch. In what was more than likely just a small window time where someone was  preparing the online store for the upcoming event, a product appeared on the site for a few minutes and then vanished as quickly as it had appeared. Like any good cigar fan, those who were able to access this phantom landing page made their own purchase and then shared their findings. It’s a move many will respect because, quite frankly, we know it’s the way we would have played it. You know who you are.

For the time being, there is only one item available on the Privada shop. Priced at $250 and limited to 10 per person, the vibe of this whole thing feels more like a limited edition art drop from Cryptik or Shepard Fairey than anything one typically encounters in the cigar world.  It has just begun and is already an experience far removed from the overwhelming barrage of coupons and email alerts we’ve all been getting this week from what feels like every store and product we’ve ever made eye contact with. Desind doesn’t seem to ever want us to feel like we’re participating in a simple transaction, but rather partnering up for an adventure that everyone is on together. That may be why the community has grown so large, and it is in that fun spirit that he created the Black Friday Friends Club, which sounds like it will evolve into special opportunity each year for a group of dedicated cigar enthusiasts to connect with each other, interact, share and influence one another in positive ways.

Two drop-down fields are the only chance a visitor has to alter their order. The first field asks “who would you most want to smoke a cigar with,” and provides a large number of options – which I won’t spoil for you – ranging from historical figures to more obscure selections based on inside knowledge of the Privada community. The second field requires, simply, for you to enter your shirt size.  Whatever you do, just remember that you were told NOT to visit the Privada Cigar Club shop. When the full shop is restored on Saturday morning, all regular production cigars will be available for 40% off – through Cyber Monday – using the code PRIVADATHANKYOU at checkout.

Will you be taking the leap of faith and become a Black Friday Friend? What do you think this project is? Let everyone know in the comments below!