Spending spree continues even after holidays

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Retailers have continued to register high sales even after Christmas, rivalling that of pre-holiday spending and marking a rise of roughly five percent year-on-year, according to the Czech News Agency. Many e-shops slashed prices on December 26 as did stone-and-mortar shops when they reopened a day later.

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Czech consumers have long grown used to waiting after the holidays and January when major sales kick in, not least in the garment business and electronics. Retailers every year also count on drawing consumers who received cash gifts or certificates under the Christmas tree. Traditionally, sales will continue throughout the month of January.

The spokeswoman for alza.cz, Patricie Šedivá, confirmed for CŤK that the last week of December had seen a bump of 25 percent in sales. Notebooks, cell phones and small electronic items remained top-sellers, she said. Euronics stores also registered a boost in sales and growth of more than five percent compared to last year, with figures matching the one-day maximum pre-Christmas, spokeswoman Lenka Mastešová confirmed. The electronic items seller said that the greatest consumer interest was in new washing machines.

The post-Christmas period also sees a bump in returned items: unwanted, inappropriate or ill-fitting gifts or gifts received more than once are often brought back: one online delivery firm head told the Czech News Agency that the number of returned items was similar to last year. About five percent of items bought in shops were returned and up to 15 percent of items which had been bought online were also sent back.

It is not uncommon for unwanted presents to end up on internet bazars, as recipients are often not able to obtain the original receipt or don’t want to exchange the item at a given store.