Wet Christmas Eve fails to dampen festive spending spree in Galway

Shop Street: spending went into overdrive this Christmas.

Galway City Tribune – It was wetter in Galway on Christmas Eve than anywhere else in the country – but that failed to dampen seasonal spending in the city, as shops reported a sales boom.

In the run-up to Christmas, shops around Galway City experienced an increase in footfall and spending, with store owners reporting increased consumer confidence.

Maeve Joyce-Crehan, Manager of Galway Chamber said there has been solid growth in pre-Christmas and post-Christmas sales.

“Pre-Christmas, I have never seen Galway as busy, numbers-wise, but that doesn’t always necessarily translate into spend. There were people shopping, in eateries and pubs, and the crowds were huge.

“There is some solid growth on 2016, and there were definitely more people around.

This week, with the post-Christmas sales underway since St Stephen’s Day, Galway Chamber has reported “strong footfall” in the city.

“Black Friday – the sales phenomenon we have imported from the United States – comes pre-Christmas and does eat into the traditional post-Christmas sales, but there is a traditional cohort for whom the post-Christmas sales are the ‘real deal’.

“There is huge spending by women on accessories and clothing, and huge discounts on designer handbags; white goods are always big, and are performing strongly – all continuing as would be expected,” she said.

Leading city businessman Anthony Ryan reported a very good week, particularly in Ryan’s Homestore, where one of the big sellers this year was gin glasses.

“Even though the weather was terrible on Christmas Eve, we are up a few [percentage] points. It was a very good week, particularly in homeware. The cookshop was huge, and gin glasses were a big seller. We’re very happy,” said Mr Ryan, adding that the St Stephen’s Day sale saw a “remarkable day” in ladies’ fashion.

Avril Smith, Manager of the Eyre Square Shopping Centre told the Galway City Tribune that footfall had “drastically increased” on Christmas week.
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