Bluewater celebrates busiest day of the year on Saturday
The Bluewater shopping centre in Kent saw its busiest day of the year on Saturday as footfall reached almost 160,000.
The centre attributed the increase in shoppers to retailers holding flash sales, the beginning of the Christmas holiday period and to the fact that many shoppers had just been paid. All in all, Bluewater experienced a busier time on Saturday and Sunday than it did on Black Friday weekend at the beginning of November.
In total, the shopping centre’s footfall is set to exceed 500,000 from Friday to today with a further 100,000 visitors expected on Christmas Eve. For the first time, Bluewater will open until midnight on 23 December when around 30 retailers will look to capture late spend from last minute shoppers.
The surge in footfall is being reflected in consumer spend. Average spend per group at Bluewater at Christmas is forecast to exceed £200, with the average visit lasting three hours. A further £20 average per group will spent in Bluewater’s restaurants.
Commenting on the weekend and expectations for Mega Monday and Christmas Eve, Robert Goodman, Bluewater’s general manager, said: “As anticipated, Christmas has taken off at Bluewater. We recorded our busiest day of the year for footfall, and many retailers have reported anecdotally strong sales as well. The flash sales helped to attract additional visitors, but the key drivers were pay day on Friday and the beginning of the holidays.
“We expect this weekend’s success to continue into Mega Monday, when we are open until midnight for the first time, and through to Christmas Eve. Whilst many consumers have left it late this year, they are more than making up for it now.”
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