Boxing Day shopping: Biggest sales event of the year

TORONTO -- For Boxing Day shopping, Durga Baudel had a plan of attack.

Instead of lining up outside a downtown Toronto Best Buy when it opened at 6 a.m.

See Full Article

, he had a friend scope out the scene, and call him when it wasn't too busy.

He ended up scoring a printer at a steep discount -- 60 per cent off. His friend, the one who tipped him off, got a new TV. And it only took them two hours, start-to-finish.

"I saved $120 (on the printer), so I'm happy," Baudel said.

While some have said that Boxing Day is losing steam in favour of Black Friday, a Best Buy spokesperson said the day after Christmas is still their biggest shopping day of the year.

Elliott Chun said the store's Boxing Day deals are typically a little better than those on Black Friday, although the November shopping event is a popular day to pick up Christmas gifts.

And on both days, the country is moving toward shopping online, favouring websites and mobile apps over bricks-and-mortar stores.

But that didn't stop crowds from forming at the Toronto Eaton Centre, which brimmed with people toting massive shopping bags in the early afternoon.

"I think for a lot of people, it's a tradition to come to Boxing Day. We've seen crowds at every store, waiting for the doors to open at 6 a.m.," Chun said, adding that more than 400 people lined up outside the downtown Toronto store and about 150 people gathered outside the downtown Vancouver location early Saturday morning.

Nearby, signs advertising Boxing Day sales hung in the windows of nearly every store in Vancouver's downtown mall. Security guards dressed in suits stemmed the flow of people streaming in and out high-end stores such as Coach, Michael Kors and Kate Spade.

For those who braved the crushing crowds, there were deals to be found.

"The prices were very cheap. I paid, I think, $26 for jeans," said Niklas Thoma, rummaging through his bags from Hollister and Abercrombie & Fitch.

It was the first-ever Boxing Day experience for Thoma, a 16-year-old student from Germany.

"It's pretty cool," he said. "It's very busy, but very cool."

Others found the deals lacking this year.

"I haven't really bought anything on sale yet," said Jasmine Nijjar, who had spent about four hours shopping, picking up some tops and makeup along the way.

"There's still good clothes, though," added her friend Sierra Blackwell.

Deal hunters on the Prairies faced the extra challenge of bitter cold.

It was -25 C in Saskatoon where Mdshamin Ahmed was first in line at 4:30 a.m. to buy a camera that had sold out online.

"Ah, it's crazy. It's too cold," Ahmed told CKOM radio as he paced back and forth trying to keep warm.

In downtown Montreal, where many big retailers opened midday, lineups outside popular stores like Victoria's Secret and H&M stretched around the block.

Onkar Jha said he waited in line about half an hour to get inside an Apple store, where he spent about $1,500 on an iPad, watches and electronics.

He said he saved at least $300, which in his estimation made the trip well worth his time.

"Too bad it's only one day," he said.

Meanwhile, all was quiet on Saturday at shopping malls in Atlantic Canada, as businesses there remained closed for Boxing Day. Sales in that region start on Sunday.

Police files

But in some cases, police were forced to get in on the action.

Thirty kilometres west of Toronto, police in Mississauga, Ont., arrested two people for an alleged assault over a parking spot at busy Square One shopping centre. One person suffered minor injuries.

Meanwhile, a police force in Port Moody, B.C., tweeted some sage advice: "If you're engaging in the gladiatorial event known as Boxing Day shopping, do not leave the spoils in your vehicle. Thieves are out too."

With files by Morgan Lowrie in Montreal and Gemma Karstens-Smith in Vancouver



Advertisements

Latest Economic News

  • Consumer debt and delinquency rates climb in third quarter: Equifax

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO - A new Equifax Canada report says low interest rates and falling oil prices drove up consumer debt and delinquency rates in the third quarter. The credit reporting agency found that average debt increased by 3.6 per cent to $22,081 in the quarter ended Sept. Source
  • Bank of Canada to make final interest rate announcement of the year

    Economic CTV News
    OTTAWA - The Bank of Canada is set to make its last interest rate announcement of the year today. The central bank is widely expected to keep its interest rate target set at 0.5 per cent, where it has been since July 2015. Source
  • Asian stocks mostly higher on record Dow, telecom news

    Economic CTV News
    TOKYO -- Asian markets were mostly higher Wednesday, cheered by gains on Wall Street and optimism about the telecommunications industry. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 0.5 per cent to 18,454.92 in morning trading. Source
  • Mother settles JetBlue lawsuit after son flown to wrong city

    Economic CTV News
    NEW YORK -- A New York City woman has agreed to settle her lawsuit against JetBlue Airways after it mixed up her 5-year-old son with another boy and flew him to the wrong city. Maribel Martinez's lawyer announced the settlement on Tuesday, saying the matter was resolved amicably. Source
  • Apple pays US$450,000 for alleged hazardous waste violations

    Economic CTV News
    SAN FRANCISCO -- Apple is paying $450,000 to settle allegations that the iPhone maker operated and closed two hazardous-waste processing plants without submitting the proper paperwork to California environmental regulators. The agreement announced Tuesday involves a now-closed plant near Apple's Cupertino, California, headquarters and another one in nearby Sunnyvale. Source
  • Alaska Airlines gets U.S. approval to buy Virgin America

    Economic CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Alaska Airlines has won government approval to buy rival Virgin America after agreeing to reduce its flight-selling partnership with American Airlines. Parent company Alaska Air Group Inc. said Tuesday that it expects to close the $2.6 billion deal soon. Source
  • Trump calls for cancellation of Air Force One replacement order with Boeing

    Economic CBC News
    A tweet from president-elect Donald Trump calling on the U.S. government to scrap an order with Boeing Co. for the development of a replacement for the Air Force One jet temporarily knocked about $1 billion US off the stock market value of the aircraft maker. Source
  • Ont. company fined $225K for ozone-harming chemical

    Economic CTV News
    BRAMPTON, Ont. -- A company in Mississauga, Ont., has been fined $225,000 for importing and selling chemicals that harm the ozone layer. The federal government says CRC Canada pleaded guilty to two counts under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act. Source
  • Alberta nosedives on global oil and gas investment ranking

    Economic CBC News
    Alberta has plunged to 43rd place in its attractiveness to global oil and gas investors, a report by the Fraser Institute suggests. The 10th annual Global Petroleum Survey of industry executives looks at various jurisdictions around the globe and a variety of barriers that might impact investment decisions in key oil and gas producing regions. Source
  • High court sides with Samsung in patent dispute with Apple

    Economic CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court unanimously sided with smartphone maker Samsung on Tuesday in its high-profile patent dispute with Apple over design of the iPhone. The justices said Samsung may not be required to pay all the profits it earned from 11 phone models because the features it copied from the iPhone were only a part of Samsung's devices. Source