Gaming

Omicron weakened Boxing Day

The Omicron variant seems to have dampened the enthusiasm of post-Christmas bargain hunters, so they haven’t had to queue long to get tested in recent days.

All the malls Le Journal visited were relatively quiet and didn’t have long lines, with the exception of Costco at Marché Central in Montreal.

Under the new restrictions in place, stores must accept 50% fewer shoppers indoors, which has likely helped dampen the enthusiasm of some shoppers.

According to a survey by the firm Deloitte, only 30% of Canadians expect to take advantage of the After-Christmas sales, up from 33% in 2020 and 34% in 2019.

Best Buy customers in Center Laval had to queue for a few minutes to enter the store.

Photo Martin Alarie

Best Buy customers in Center Laval had to queue for a few minutes to enter the store.

On Sunday morning, only a dozen people were waiting in front of the Best Buy in the Galeries d’Anjou, in Montreal.

“We do web sales and pickup from the vehicle, which means customers don’t necessarily have to queue,” said Benoit Douville, general manager of the electronic hardware store.

Rachid Lakri, however, decided to go there to buy a new PlayStation 4 for his daughter. “It’s faster and I get a chance to see if I want to buy something else,” he says.

In Quebec, the Galeries de la Capitale and Laurier Quebec parking lots were full, but nothing unusual.

“Five or ten years ago we would have been stuck like sardines all day. This is far from the case, ”explained Martin Boucher, CEO of Groupe Boucher Sports, who welcomed customers to the new Sports Experts at Laurier Quebec.

No long lines

The Oberson store in Quartier DIX30 in Brossard has decided to be even more rigorous. Even if you can accommodate 93 people at a time, you have made the decision to limit your number to 60.

“We had employees who are off work because they are affected by COVID. We decided to reduce that to have time with customers, “said Marie-Pier Croteau, manager of this ski and bike shop.

In Carrefour Laval, the atmosphere had nothing to do with the one that reigned in the projection centers of the metropolitan area, where people have queued for hours in recent days.

Brothers Derick Falardeau and Frédérick Chicoine were looking for bargains at Carrefour Laval.

Photo Olivier Bourque

Brothers Derick Falardeau and Frédérick Chicoine were looking for bargains at Carrefour Laval.

Two brothers had made an appointment there for a day of shopping. “I found some jeans, a new jacket. I do my annual shopping, ”said Derick Falardeau.

His brother Frédérick Chicoine had not found a shoe on his feet. “It’s cool, I haven’t seen big discounts,” he said.

Average traffic to shopping centers on Sunday was lower than on a normal Sunday, according to Benoît Duguay, a professor at the UQAM Faculty of Business Sciences.

“People who normally go to the stores have not been [en raison de la hausse des cas] and the stores have limited capacity. This necessarily affected sales in the store. [dimanche] “Said Mr. Duguay.

– With Olivier Bourque and Jérémy Bernier

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