Sales for Crop Over have been slow but are picking up as Kadooment Day approaches. That was the general notion of businesses in Bridgetown today as the island’s summer festival nears its end.
When Barbados TODAY visited the capital Friday afternoon there were signs that the festival was building up to a crescendo, with the streets lined with last-minute shoppers hoping to get out before the build up of traffic.
Abeds Managing Director Eddie Abed revealed that sales only began to pick up last weekend, but he was pleased with the way things were going. According to Abed, bandleaders were late in purchasing materials mainly due to economic reasons.
“It was late and it’s all because of the economy. The deposits weren’t there, the sponsors weren’t there in the initial periods so the bands had to wait until they build up enough of a momentum to get going,” Abed said.
At Fifth Avenue Fashions, the store owner said business was not as robust this year as it had been in previous years, but he too was pleased with what he got.
“Based on the amount of the people working these days, the number of parties they have going on, we’re absolutely thankful. The numbers now are not the same they used to be, but based on our projections we’re doing alright,” he said. “It could always be better, but [it could] be worse too; so we thankful man! Once we get some of the bills pay we alright.”
Barbados TODAY also visited the Converse Store, and according to a representative, commercial activity had been sluggish, but he expected it to improve over the next few days. He added that an increase in online shopping had not help local store owners.
“There’s definitely a lot more online shopping and stuff. Persons are shopping around more; people are not only bringing in stuff but getting people or family to bring in things for them. So there is a lot more sourcing of stock.”
Over at Cave Shepherd on Broad Street, Store Manager Andrew Wilkinson revealed that things only began to pick up today.
“Crop Over festival has started slow, but with today being Friday we’ve seen an increase in foot traffic, and it is looking really encouraging at this time,” Wilkinson said, adding he did not believe online shopping was affecting business.
While business was slow overall, the same could not be said for the sale of alcohol.
Cockspur Rum representative Shane Dorson told Barbados TODAY both locals and visitors were purchasing liquor, with fan favourites for the festival being Cockspur Splash and Cockspur Rum Punch.
“Tourist are running to our Cockspur Splash while the older generation is more targeting the Cockspur VSOR. The younger generation is going with flavoured rums . . . . So everything is going pretty good,”