With just one day left before Christmas, businesses in Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) are still hoping for an increase in sales.
While it is customary for business to bloom around this time of year, many businesses in the community have complained that things have not “picked up” as yet.
According to some, this may be due to late payment of salaries and bonuses for some employees. Others have indicated that shoppers are now shopping smart and refusing to overspend or are simply “living from day to day” .
<<<Inews>>> ventured into the streets of Linden to get an understanding of the atmosphere as it relates to holiday shopping. Zeroing in on one of the main shopping areas – the Mackenzie Market Square, persons were observed shopping for household items, including decorations, vinyl and other items to enhance their homes.
Long lines were also observed at commercial banks and a few shoppers were very much appalled at the steep increase in the prices of items, especially eggs which are being retailed for $1300 to $1600 per crate.
“I pay $16,000 a crate for eggs. These people does just want exploit people in this place,” a female shopper remarked.
This publication spoke with a few food vendors who noted that customers usually would wait until the last few days before Christmas to purchase vegetables, but this has reduced significantly.
As such, they noted that they were optimistic that things would improve as the day progressed. “Well, they can’t get it to stay long so they does buy last minute. Vinyl and so people would buy early,” the proprietor of Curtis Greens Stand and Groceries noted.
“Last year around this time was better, I could’ve afford to stock up my shop more . But now I frighten …because people ain’t get the spending power … most people living day to day,” he added.
The businessman also pointed to a lack of jobs in the community which, he noted, is another contributing factor to the poor sales.
Another vendor indicated that holiday shopping was the same last year and the year before was even worse. As a result, he said he has been stocking up “lighter” each year to avoid losses.
“Things ain’t looking so perfect yet. It just getting worse and worse every year. I think things will pick up Christmas Eve day alone. You see, plenty people need these things, but they ain’t get the spending power. Linden want more jobs. That is one of the main problems. When jobs deh, money does come. Bosai is the only place right now that really contributing to jobs. If that place close down now, we might not see people,” he opined.
This online publication also spoke with a few business owners who sold decorations and household items and they indicated that sales have been slow.
Overall, businesses seem to be awaiting an increase in sales. Over the past few years , vendors in the community have complained about the sloth in sales around the holiday season .
Over at the Wismar market in Linden, the situation is no different, with vendors complaining. Recently , in an effort to revive shopping at the location, Regional Chairman Renis Morian and a team from the Regional Democratic Council organised a Christmas promotion there.