Business pickup during public holidays

Business activity during the 2019 festive season would normally be dampened, overshadowed by the deadly measles epidemic.

But that didn't appear to be the case with a number of both small and big supermarkets opening their doors for last minute Christmas and Boxing Day shoppers.

Shop assistant Sina Ye of Fagalii told the Samoa Observer that they’ve noticed an increase in shoppers during the two public holidays with snacks, alcohol and toys the main attractions.

“There are some people buying baby products like diapers and baby formula. But it’s mostly just snacks and toys for the kids,” she said.

“If we do decide to open on public holidays then we would just do a half a day as it’s not too busy in the afternoon. The bigger shops would have the more changes I think.”

Her shop at Fagalii stayed open until noon on Boxing Day and then closed early in the afternoon due to the lack of customers. 

A staff member at the Frankies supermarket at Matautu told this newspaper that they understand the shopping needs of their customers and open during public holidays.

“Our service is to the people. We stay open on holidays because our motto is ‘we never rest to bring you the best’!”

“It’s all about fairness and good service to our people during this holiday season.”

The most popular items their customers went for when their shop opened on Boxing Day were food, according to the staff.

At the Ah Liki wholesale outlet, a company representative said most of their customers went for protein. 

“It’s always chicken, meat for family barbeques, and even turkey tails. There was a price drop for boxes of chicken last week where we had heaps of customers coming in. But it’s been normal since it changed again,” he said.

“Some people are shocked with changing prices but it’s normal. There will hardly be anyone in this week, but surely next week for New Year they’ll come by again.” 

Another retail platform for the Ah Liki business group is the company’s online marketplace with the company representative saying there has been a rise in online purchases.

“People overseas pay online for goods that their families can come and pick up so that’s also something we’ve seen a lot of lately.”

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