It’s panic Saturday! High street shoppers set to spend £1.2BILLION in a single day in last-minute scramble for gifts

After the chaos of Black Friday and Manic Monday, shoppers are set to spend a staggering £2.1million every minute shops are open on ‘Panic Saturday.’

By closing time on Saturday, last minute shoppers will have spent a total of £1.2billion on last-minute gifts and groceries on the high street.

The predictions would see sales on ‘Panic Saturday’ easily outspend other big shopping days in the run up to Christmas such as Black Friday – £810million, Cyber Monday – £650 million and Manic Monday- £676.5million.

The predictions would see sales on ‘Panic Saturday’ easily outspend other big shopping days in the run up to Christmas such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Manic Monday
The predictions would see sales on ‘Panic Saturday’ easily outspend other big shopping days in the run up to Christmas such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Manic Monday

After the chaos of Black Friday and Manic Monday, shoppers (pictured on Londn’s Oxford Street) are set to spend a staggering 2.1million every minute shops are open on ‘Panic Saturday
After the chaos of Black Friday and Manic Monday, shoppers (pictured on Londn’s Oxford Street) are set to spend a staggering 2.1million every minute shops are open on ‘Panic Saturday

The Black Friday sales saw thousands of shoppers on a frantic hunt for Christmas bargains after retailers slashed up to 80 per cent from big-ticket items such as televisions and tablet computers.

Police had to be called in to stop fighting at dozens of stores and made a number of arrests after security guards found themselves unable to deal with the scrums.

But this Saturday is predicted to be even busier with an estimated 13 million consumers descending on the high street to spend £2.1 million for every minute the shops are open, at an average of £92.31 per person.

Poor weather, unpredictable deliveries and earlier sales are expected to drive 60.9 million shoppers to the high street between Saturday and Christmas Eve – up 14 per cent on last year – who will spend a total of £4.74billion, according to a report by the Centre for Retail Research (CRR) for Vouchercodes.co.uk.

But those averse to crowds are advised to stay home on Tuesday next week for what is expected to be the busiest single high street shopping day ahead of Christmas.

Visa Europe predicts shoppers will spend £1.3 billion on Tuesday alone on the high street, or £15,278 every second, on its cards.

By closing time on Saturday, last minute shoppers will have spent a total of £1.2billion on last-minute gifts and groceries on the high street
By closing time on Saturday, last minute shoppers will have spent a total of £1.2billion on last-minute gifts and groceries on the high street

It estimates 34 million transactions will take place, with numbers peaking in the lunch hour break between 1pm and 2pm.

Despite the rise of Black Friday, which saw high street spending of over £1 billion this year, Visa predicts that the high street will continue to see its busiest day two days before Christmas.

Overall, the seven day period before Christmas Day is predicted to see a 7% increase in spending and an 8 per cent increase in transactions on the same period last year.

Visa Europe managing director for the UK and Ireland, Kevin Jenkins, said: ‘Black Friday kick-started Christmas on the high street and online this year but the busiest bricks and mortar day will likely remain in its traditional slot close to Christmas.

‘Retailers’ multi-channel approach should cause a surge in footfall from click-and-collect sales too, with the opportunity for further shopping in-store when consumers arrive.

‘Across Tuesday December 23 we are likely to see £1.3 billion spent in total. Lunch hour should prove the most popular time for a shopping trip, either for last minute gifts or final ingredients for Christmas dinner.’

Sales on Black Friday (pictured at Asda in Wembley, London) caused chaos in some shops as hundreds rushed to get the best deals
Sales on Black Friday (pictured at Asda in Wembley, London) caused chaos in some shops as hundreds rushed to get the best deals

Vouchercodes.co.uk managing director Claire Davenport said: ‘With Christmas Day falling later in the week this year, consumers feel that there is still plenty of time to complete their shopping.

‘Panic Saturday kicks off a big week for retailers and we’re expecting to see a huge increase in traffic to our site this weekend.’

Data from payment processing company Worldpay suggests Britain’s department stores can expect to double their takings this weekend, with outlets in the north of England set to benefit the most from Panic Saturday.

Worldpay UK managing director Dave Hobday said: ‘Department stores are magnets for shoppers who find themselves in the last-chance saloon in the final few days before Christmas.

‘Many of these eleventh-hour shoppers will be breaking into a cold sweat at the thought of heading to the high street on the busiest shopping day of the year and praying for someone to take the pain away.’

Vouchercodes.co.uk managing director Claire Davenport said: ‘With Christmas Day falling later in the week this year, consumers feel that there is still plenty of time to complete their shopping.

‘Panic Saturday kicks off a big week for retailers and we’re expecting to see a huge increase in traffic to our site this weekend.’

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Posted on December 19, 2014, in #retail, #uk. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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