By Chris Kidd • 11 October 2020 • 13:13
To Sunday Shop or Not Sunday Shop … THAT is the question?
Sunday is closing time in Spain. It is traditionally a day of relaxation, reflection, worship and family.
For most shops, including many supermarkets this means that they are closed and therefore the public need to ensure that any shopping for groceries, toiletries and other essential items should be carried out on Saturday … after all, you don’t want to get caught without toilet roll on a Sunday morning.
Over the years, Spain has seen a number of large hypermarkets open on Sundays, and a number of supermarkets open towards large festivities, such as Christmas, in the Sunday’s running up to them.
Sunday shopping has always been a debate subject in many parts of the world. In the UK, Sunday shopping was not a significant event until relatively recently.
Many people who agree that shops should be able to choose whether to open on a Sunday argue that the idea of remaining closed no longer fits with the 24/7 global economy of the 21st century in which people rely on the continued and uninterrupted delivery of goods and services.
And there is also the argument that Sunday is actually on of the few days when people are fully available to enjoy leisurely shopping, as it still remains outside of many people’s work commitments.
The economic benefits of increased retail hours is also not to be ignored as there is the potential for increased opening hours to see greater revenue and an increase in job availability in the retail sector.
Furthermore, people argue that those that remain attached to Sunday as a “Family Day” are not taking into account the fact that this tradition has already seen a downturn due to large scale sporting events and festivals being held on a Sunday which has seen a division between family members on a day when they would have traditionally spent time together.
However, there are just as many opponents of the full opening of retail environments on a Sunday.
Many see it as a dangerous symbol of commercialism that is taking over the human condition and the full and unbridled opening of shops at all times would see a loss of valuable time and, potentially, see increases in working hours and the destruction of much needed down time.
There are also objections on the ground of religion. Particularly in countries like Spain that still have a highly religious community. For them, the idea of full-scale commercialism being readily available on a Sunday is little less the sacrilege.
Furthermore, the economic benefits suggested by many for Sunday opening have also been disputed. Many opponents to Sunday opening protest that this trend would merely see trade move from other days and would not actually increase overall retail sales.
So, with so many arguments for and against Sunday opening it is clear that there is no specific consensus on the way forward and we will just have to wait and see what the future holds, however, it is clear that the current direction of travel may see Sunday opening as a inevitable end goal, whether we like it or not.
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Chris has spent a colourful and varied international career in the Arts followed by a substantial career in Education.
Having moved to Spain in 2019 for a different pace and quality of life with his fiancé, he has now taken up a new and exciting role working with the online department of Euro Weekly News.
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