Festive season crucial for shops
AFTER a tough year on the retail front, Bundaberg's shop owners are hoping for a good festive season.
Proctor Jewellers owner Bernice Proctor said business was picking up, but they expected a last-minute rush the week before Christmas.
“What happens is people want to put their purchases on their card, so they wait until the last minute so they don't have to pay anything off until the new year,” she said.
Despite this, the shop had already seen a number of people who were looking for gifts.
“This year we have been selling lot of rings,” she said.
Ms Proctor said another popular Christmas item was watches.
But the news is not as positive for some.
For Bundy Kidz owner Mike Mickes, this Christmas period will be crucial.
“Generally speaking, this whole year has been below last year's sales, which was the worst we had in a long time,” he said.
“Everything this year is critical.”
Mr Mickes said the shop had started to see a mild increase in traffic with the start of Christmas shopping.
“The last two weeks before Christmas are totally above what we see in terms of customers, usually,” he said.
Mr Mickes said shoppers tended to be favouring gifts for the under-5s this year, with dollhouses and jigsaws popular items.
Dymocks Bundaberg owner Phil Freeman said books once again appeared to be a popular Christmas gift.
“We have been well and truly picking up quite well over the past two weeks,” he said.
Mr Freeman said it was hard to pinpoint what the most popular books were this year, but non-fiction and biographies were popular when people were buying something for their fathers.