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Boxing Day shopping chaos has hit malls around the country as thousands of New Zealanders go on the annual bargain hunt.
Up until 2pm today Auckland’s largest mall Sylvia Park had been visited by 50,000 shoppers, says marketing manager Jo Allen.
She says the most popular retailers at the mall are the major fashion stores, electronic stores and the shoe store Platypus which is offering a sale of up to 50 per cent off.
Despite the number of shoppers, she says there have been no issues with parking.
“We’ve got a parking management team to assist us,” says Allen.
However, traffic outside of the mall has caused disruption.
At midday, the New Zealand Transport Agency warned people to avoid the area and expect delays.
“Traffic continues to be heavy in both directions through the Mt Wellington interchange with queues at both the northbound and southbound off-ramps.”
Meanwhile, Westfield in Manukau has also been very busy.
Shopper Rukuwai Tipene-Allen told Rereātea the car park was “crazy” when she visited this morning.
“Someone had to park across the road at the police station because there was no room."
She says she saw a lot of shoppers from out of town who had spent their Christmas in Auckland.
“It was just a typical Boxing Day,” she says.
Retail NZ general manager Greg Harford says everyone in the retail sector is hoping today will be a stellar day for sales.
“There’s lots of great bargains out there to be had. Malls are pretty busy as customers hit the shops to try see what’s going on.”
He says one of the things that makes Boxing Day sales this year different from five years ago is the rise of online shopping.
“Customers are making the most of those deals online which means they don’t necessarily have to hit the shops to get the most of the sales.”