Czech retailers cut prices after Christmas

28-12-2004

Together with the rise of the economy, Czechs tend to spent more money and buy ever more expensive products, which is particularly visible before the Christmas holidays. Last week it seemed that the shopping spree in Czech cities had reached its peak. But now Christmas is over and retailers are making an effort to get rid off their remaining stock. And this year the sales are starting much earlier than in previous years.

Prices in many stores have been already cut by 10, 20 even 50 percent, with other retailers planning to reduce them in next days. As Zbynek Mrozek from Marks and Spencer says, this year they decided to offer sales already a week before Christmas, although the discounts will be much higher towards the end of the year.

"We start with an average discount, nearly 30 percent - some products are of course only 10 percent some are 50 percent. Later, at the end of the sale period, the discount shall be much higher - nearly 70 percent, for example."

Does this regard mostly clothes, food or cosmetics...?

"It is across the whole business. Some sort of cosmetics will be cheaper because we want to sell it out and introduce a new one during the spring. Of course, also food - we have some typical Christmas products like puddings and cakes, and we would have a problem to sell it later after Christmas."

Whereas before Christmas people mostly buy presents and things needed for the holidays, the sales are used by customers who are looking for a particularly good deal.

"I think that the sale period is not only for our typical customers - of course, they also sometime take the advantage and shop with us at that time - but very often it is a very different type of customers, they buy only cheaper things."

But most of the people I stopped at a Prague shopping mall were still hesitating and said they prefer to wait for even lower prizes.

"We just wanted to buy some jeans, pants but we didn't find anything."

Have you found anything cheaper than usually? It's the end of the year and lots of merchandise is reduced.

"Yes, some things were cheaper than before. But only clothes. We didn't see any other things."

"I think they certainly did go down with the prices, and I only regret that I am not slimmer and younger because I would definitely keep on shopping. Especially clothes like every woman. I like buying cosmetics too, but I got lots of it for Christmas."

So a few opinions of shoppers in Prague stores the first day shops reopened after Christmas. As opposed to communist times, when seasonal sales practically did not exist, they are now gradually becoming more and more common in the Czech Republic.

28-12-2004