Retailers brace for bargain hunters

By Katie Holland katie holland@dailypost co nz

3 comments

While some are still sleeping off yesterday's overindulgence, many others will hit the Rotorua shops today in search of Boxing Day bargains.

For many, they'll be buying Christmas presents, preferring to be a day or so late with the gifts in order to get more bang for their buck.

Readers on the Rotorua Daily Post Facebook page were planning to be among them. Some even postponing Christmas in order to shop today.

"It's cheaper, you get the bargains plus I don't do Xmas till after 25th anyway, its to mainstream lol," was one comment.

Others were thinking practically.

"I give my children money for Christmas and then take them into town on Boxing Day so they get all the bargains and can buy things they want," and "We buy for everyone else for Xmas then me and my partner get ours Boxing Day."

But the thought of fighting the crowds didn't appeal to all, with others planning to spend today "staying as far as possible away from town" or "reading and laying low".

While many retailers had already started their sales, shoppers are expected to pour into shops today.

Gary Herbert, assistant property manager for Pukeroa Oruawhata Holdings which manages Rotorua Central, said today will probably be the busiest day of the year at the mall. Last year's sales were chaos, he said.

Warehouse Rotorua store manager Sally Rison said she expected today to be one of the biggest days of the year, with extra staff rostered on.

"I am sure it's going to be crazy ... but a lot of fun."

She said the store was open from 8.30am until 8pm, with many keen for an early start, noting: "We normally have them queuing."

The products to be discounted, and by how much, were not known until the last minute, she said. Every year many customers bought gift vouchers for Christmas so she expected many to be redeeming vouchers today. However for some of the city's smaller, owner-operator stores, Boxing Day sales are not worth it.

"There's no point in a Boxing Day sale ... there's very little or no profit in it," said Gould Photographics owner Mark Gould.

Mr Gould said he thought it was disheartening for people to see a sale on December 26, when they had bought something for a higher price just days earlier. He preferred to offer great service and the best price possible year round.

Mr Gould said he believed the trend to Boxing Day sales had "killed Christmas Day" for many children who now had to wait to receive gifts.

Last year's Paymark Boxing Day figures for Bay of Plenty, including Rotorua, showed shoppers splurged $8.7 million on sales.

- ROTORUA DAILY POST

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