Black Friday Spain-style returns this year, with major shops dropping prices in a bid to kick-start a Christmas consumer spending spree that retailers hope will maintain the positive consumer atmosphere created during 2013’s festivities.
The day after Thanksgiving, being celebrated this year on Thursday November 27th, has become the United States’ most famous frenzy of consumerism, and in the last two years Spanish retailers have also tried to promote the idea of pre-Christmas bargains.
El Corte Inglés, Spain’s dominant department store chain, is running a Black Friday campaign for the second successive year, offering discounts of up to 40 percent from Thursday through the weekend on electronics, clothes and books, among other products.
Worten, the electronics chain, is also participating with 3,500 products reduced in price from Black Friday through to Sunday, both in its Spanish stores and online. Media Markt, Decathlon, Carrefour and Toys ‘R’ Us are among the stores participating in 2014’s Black Friday sales in Spain, an event which is bigger than the previous two campaigns, according to the business daily Expansión.
The holding of a Black Friday consumer event in Spain was only made legally possible in 2012, when the government decided to scrap regulations regarding when sales could be held. Previously only certain periods of the year were set aside for price cutting, such as the New Year sales held in Spain once the shopping for Reyes Magos (The Three Kings) gifts on January 6th has ended.
According to a poll conducted by TNS for eBay, Spaniards are expected to spend an average of €209 ($261) on Christmas presents this year, slightly lower than last year’s figure of €220.
The same survey said that consumers in the UK would lead the way in Europe, spending the equivalent of €282 on Christmas gifts, according to the Spanish news site El Economista.