Yule rush starts for vendors

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Monday, November 8, 2010

SPOOKY hats and Grim Reaper masks have now been replaced by sleigh bells and mistletoe.

With Christmas just around the corner, street vendors are roaming the city with their
sparkling lanterns, and stores now display ornaments for the holidays.

One might opt to do their Christmas shopping inside the comforts of a mall, but for those working on a tight budget, public markets are the place to go.


At HFC Marketing, 9-foot garlands in assorted colors go for P12 each. Christmas gift wrappers are sold at P3 each roll, a price that can triple when bought in department stores.

Another public market store sells a wide variety of Christmas lanterns that cost as low as P5 each. The bigger ones are priced at P15-P35, while the biggest and most expensive costs P175.

A shopping mart located in the heaving alleys of the Lapu-Lapu public market also sells their Yuletide ornaments at affordable rates. Poinsettias are sold at P4-P22, Christmas greetings posters at P10-P33, and Christmas tree stars at P27 each. Also available is a pack of eight Christmas balls at P39, as well as a foot-high Christmas tree at only P29.

Joery Relon, a retailer of Christmas ornaments, said they try to keep their prices as low as possible to cater to the low-income consumers.

“Ganahan mi nga maskin ang mga pobre, makapalit ug ginagmay nga mga dekorasyon aron aduna pud sila’y simbolo sa Pasko. Importante baya kaayo na natong mga Pinoy (We want the less-privileged to be able to buy at least a few simple decorations so that they would have their own symbols of Christmas. That’s very important to us Filipinos),” he explained.

Cielo Abadajos, a mother of one, said she started buying decorations since September because prices tend to increase during the start of December. It has been their family’s tradition to decorate their home in advance because they like feeling the Christmas spirit early.

Meanwhile, fish and meat vendors said that based on their experience, prices generally go up during the holidays. Fish becomes scarcer during December, while meat suppliers increase their rates during this time, causing the market vendors to do the same.

Fruit vendors, on the other hand, said prices of fruits commonly purchased during the holidays, like apples and oranges, will not rise because the increased demand from customers already allows them to earn more.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 08, 2010.

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