Hard times may hit Black Friday with no massive queues expected
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Cape Town - Shoppers, crippled by unemployment and salary cuts brought on by the coronavirus pandemic coupled with rising electricity and petrol prices, might not be storming the doors of retailers this Black Friday next week.
V&A Waterfront spokesperson Donald Kau said they are not expecting massive queues.
“Our shopping centre does not have large white goods retailers like Dion Wired or Game or a big discount grocer like Checkers where they usually have bigger crowd control challenges,” said Kau.
He said they would have retailers offering specials and were confident of managing the numbers of visitors.
“It’s also worth noting that with Covid-19 regulations still in place shopping centres and retailers are limited in trading hours within the regulations of the lockdown,” he said.
Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Jacques Moolman said Black Friday was a sales event like any other.
Moolman said it just has a catchy name, like Christmas and Easter sales have become, and it was designed to put consumers in a buying mood in the hope that the reduced prices of a Black Friday sale would be lower than sales on other occasions.
He said sometimes that is true but it is a case of buyer beware. He said consumers could benefit from lower prices during Black Friday and retailers of course aim to sell more during the period.
He said the government benefits also as the VAT increases along with sales.
National Debt Advisors (NDA) chief executive, Sebastien Alexanderson, encouraged consumers to carefully consider the cost of their Black Friday purchases, especially if they are not paying cash for an item.
“South Africans, like the rest of the world, are tired and drained after another hard year of the pandemic and its consequences,” said Alexanderson.
He said one could understand the human need to buy something which would either bring some joy to oneself or a loved one. The problem arises when consumers, who have access to credit, use it rashly or without a complete understanding of its full costs, payback terms and conditions.