Contrasting reports of Christmas sales downtown Kingston
SEVENTY-TWO hours before Christmas Day some vendors downtown Kingston were expressing disappointment with the volume of sales, saying that many customers are complaining about the price of goods.
But their experience contrasts with those of at least two store workers who said that sales have been good so far.
Amid heavy crowds of shoppers at Coronation Market and on the streets of the capital, a vendor who gave her name only as Kerry told the Jamaica Observer that the goods are expensive, resulting in customers complaining.
“When the customers come to buy, sometimes they ask and then they just walk away because the things are so expensive,” said Kerry who buys produce from other vendors inside the market.
Another vendor, Joseph Rhoden, shared similar sentiments.
“They have a system by saying that ‘not fi the buyer, not fi the seller’. Things not going the way we would want it,” he said, adding that some customers cannot afford the products. That, he said, forces him to adjust his prices.
“It go by the way how you work out your weekend money because you have some people not earning as much as some so the difference is, we work with the way how you can afford,” Rhoden explained.
Demar Miles, who said he plans to work part-time on Christmas Day, complained that business is slow.
“Yuh nuh see how the market look empty and a Christmas? Money fi a gwaan,” Miles said, pointing out that last Christmas was better.
A street vendor who did not want to be named said sales were so bad that she was thinking of “running off” to the United States.
However, a shopper who gave her name only as Denise told the Observer, “The prices are quite reasonable, quite affordable and good.”
At Rockland Furniture Depot on Orange Street a worker who gave his name as Raman said that even though sales this Christmas are slower than last year they are still getting a lot of customers.
Anthony Howell at A’s Trendy Fashion, also on Orange Street, had a similar experience. However, he said that while business was booming he was facing problems in another area.
“All containers delay; we just get the goods three days before Christmas so business can’t be better â€” and remember, we owe people for the goods,” Howell said.