Rising prices not affecting Christmas present purchases

Christmas decorations.
Christmas decorations. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

Shopping malls are busy this holiday season despite the rapidly rising cost of living and consumers are still planning to buy Christmas gifts.

At midday on Tuesday, Tallinn's shopping malls were bustling, "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported.

The show spoke to shoppers and businesses about their plans for Christmas and how rising prices were affecting their choices.

One customer, Peter, said gifts are harder to find and that he plans to spend less money than usual this year.

Kirill told AK: "I don't usually have time to shop before the New Year, whether the shops are open or not. This time we came early to buy presents and got everything we needed in one shopping center. [Rising] prices didn't stop us."

Christmas decorations. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

Another shopper, Anett, said: "We've always been very sensible, we only do children's gifts, not adults."

Savings are not being made at the expense of children this year, toy store XS Mänguasjad told AK. Sales have risen by 20 percent compared to the same period in 2021.

"In the week leading up to Christmas in particular, there are a lot of last-minute shoppers making their final purchases and this is very noticeable," said Jana Väli, marketing manager of XS Mänguasjad.

However, technology store Euronics said more modest purchases are currently being made than during the first half of the year. Customers are also being more cautious.

"For us, December has always been a very strong month and the kind of month we all look forward to and have been preparing for. Customers are weighing up their purchases more and looking more, choosing before they buy and of course, they are looking for a good price, not a cheap product, but a good product with a good offer," said Kaidi Kelt, Euronics' head of retail.

The carpark at Ülemiste keskus. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

While the shops are full today, many people also made purchases earlier in the year.

Kristjan Maaroos, head of the Rocca al Mare mall, said: "Perhaps one interesting sign this year was that a lot of gifts were bought during the Black Friday campaign, with more shoppers [participating] than before."

Consumers are making savings on entertainment and eating out less often, but not on gifts, Maaroos told AK.


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Editor: Barbara Oja, Helen Wright

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