The luxurious open corridors at the Gulf City mall in Lowlands were mostly bare of shoppers last Saturday, with just a week to go before Christmas Day next Monday.
At midday, many stores were empty of customers, other had nut a few, with at least one store manager suggesting optimistically that the numbers would most likely pick up later in the afternoon when people are done working for the day.
But even if shoppers plan to indulge in the mad frenzy of last minute shopping, reports are that sales of usual top sellers for Christmas - toys, jewellery, clothing, electronics, sports - have been better in previous years. “This is the worst I have ever seen... sales are down, people not buying. The last few years were actually much better,” said a salesperson at Caribbean Jewellers.
At Detour, an employee said the few customers strolling through the store were indicative of the regular traffic.
“We have no sales this year... business is at its lowest as we speak. The lowest it has ever been,” she said.
It was the same story at retail clothing store, Micles.
“Not good at all... nothing compared to what we are accustomed to,” said a salesperson there.
Shopper Helen Thomas, who could browse without the bustle of a crowd, said she was looking around for the best prices.
“I have no money... I am on a budget, I am a pensioner,” she said.