The shops were full but there was still room to move at Boxing Day sales in Wellington as hot weather drew many to the beach instead.
Boxing Day is the most heavily discounted sales day of the year. Market figures are not out till later today, but the trend so far in December indicates shoppers may have spent more than $106 million nationally yesterday.
Department store Kirkcaldie & Stains opened on Boxing Day for the first time yesterday, joining the widespread trend to discount stock the day after Christmas.
With a huge advertising push, big chains such as Farmers and The Warehouse were yesterday offering 10 to 50 per cent off, with Briscoes cutting prices 30 to 60 per cent. Some electronics stores offered 20 per cent off their main brands.
At Harvey Norman in Tory St, Wellington, shopper Jean Ussher left the store beaming after securing the last Macbook Pro.
Having wanted one for some time, Ms Ussher decided to try her luck at the sale.
"They took the sign down to say they were available and I couldn't believe it, I had strict instructions from my son about what to get.
"But they found one more for me. I was so excited, my daughter's in London and I texted her to say I'm in Harvey Norman and I'm buying a mac."'
MacBook Pros were cut by $320 to $1578.
Fellow bargain hunters Umi Kamalruddin and Naomi Villegas - both Boxing Day sale regulars - were also happy with their purchases of a 32-inch television and a vacuum cleaner.
"It's a very good deal. I just moved into a new house and thought it was a great time to get a TV," Ms Kamalruddin said.
Kirkcaldie & Stains managing director John Milford said the store had cut 10 to 30 per cent from their prices.
"It was too big an opportunity to be missed. We made the plunge ... it was inevitable," Mr Milford said.
The store would still have its big two-week sale in late January.
By mid-afternoon, he said the sale day had been "quite successful".
"There were lots of people, with the cruise ship in - and those customers like a bargain, and they were spending money."
- © Fairfax NZ News
Is John Banks' upcoming trial the end for the ACT party?Related story: Banks takes only viable option