Big day for boxing, wrapping, spending
Wallets were out, cash was flowing and credit cards were king at the Boxing Day sales yesterday.
New Plymouth mall Centre City was packed with shoppers on the hunt for a bargain.
Holly Evans said she enjoyed a day of shopping with a group of family and friends.
"I had vouchers but I also kept some money aside for spending at the sales," the 17-year-old said.
Scott Ward, who was also shopping with the group, said he loved doing the Boxing Day sales.
"Hell yeah, it's just as big as Christmas Day for us."
They planned to dedicate their entire day to hunting out the best post-Christmas deals, and after Centre City they would head to The Warehouse, then The Valley shopping area.
"We'll probably finish the night off in Pukekura Park since the weather's so nice," Mr Ward said.
On Devon Street, hungry shoppers filled up eateries, including Amadinah, Subway and Elixr.
Amadinah owner Osama Abdel-Razek said his Mediterranean restaurant had been busy.
"We have had lines of people all day."
It was reported there was a line outside Bell Block's The Warehouse before the store opened yesterday morning.
Cars were parked on the grass at The Valley and Devon Street was scattered with buskers.
Centre City marketing manager Jo Stephenson said the mall had been at its busiest yesterday morning.
"Everyone was in really good spirits, so we are happy with that."
At The Valley's Mitre 10 Mega, store manager Phillip Rose said it had been a big day.
"It was pretty full-on from opening till about two-ish."
Mr Rose said Boxing Day was always the busiest day of the year and yesterday was definitely busier than last year.
Electronic transaction provider Paymark's latest figures reflected an increase in spending by Kiwis this Christmas.
The company recorded its highest transaction rate ever, at 148 per second, at 12.24pm, on Christmas Eve. This compared with a peak of 132 transactions per second in 2012.
In Taranaki, $9.5 million was spent on December 22 and 23 through the Paymark system, which processes about 75 per cent of all electronic transactions in New Zealand. This was up 7 per cent from last year's $8.8m.
Taranaki Daily News