The HoReCa market in Poland is worth nearly PLN 28.6bn according to PMR analysis, which means that in 2017 it grew by over 6% year on year. Not only was it the third year of strong growths, but also in 2018, due to the good condition of the Polish economy and the growth of domestic consumption, forecasts for this market are very good. This is confirmed by the data presented in PMR’s report “HoReCa market in Poland 2018. Market analysis and development forecasts for 2018-2023”.
Considering that clothing or footwear purchases are most often made in chain stores located in shopping malls, it is not surprising that most people shopping on Sundays, regardless of frequency, live in the largest cities (70%), where access to these stores is highest.
A positive attitude towards Sunday shopping is also supported by a higher level of education and income, but is not differentiated according to gender.
On 22 November 2017, the Sejm passed a law restricting the possibility of trading on Sundays. The rules entered into force on 1 March 2018 and, according to them, in 2018 shops will be allowed to open on the first and last Sunday of the month; from 2019 only on the last Sunday and from 2020 retail trade on Sunday will be completely banned, with some exceptions (e.g. petrol stations, railway stations, small owner-operated shops).
For those who have so far bought shoes or clothes on Sundays, the trade ban will significantly change their shopping habits. The dominant two strategies to adapt to the new conditions will be to postpone Sunday’s purchases to Saturday (53%) or business days (not the same as Saturday). here sometimes from Monday to Friday, due to the different nature of the respondents’ work). Nearly two out of 10 respondents said that they would start buying more often online, while 7% would respond with a reduction in their consumer needs.
The most digitalized form of response was chosen by the youngest respondents. In this group alone, online shopping was the strategy chosen more often than shopping on working days, the most popular among people aged 55+, who in turn probably have more time on working days due to retirement, and prefer to spend weekends in a different way than shopping.The tendency to reduce clothing and footwear purchases decreases with the increase in the total household income. Education is not a factor clearly differentiating the way of adaptation, although a few characteristic features can be observed – people with secondary education more often declare that they will reduce their purchases of shoes and clothing, with primary education – they less frequently mentioned online shopping as an alternative.
The players on the clothing and footwear market are afraid to reduce their turnover. They also anticipate the need to reduce the number of employees in showrooms (the number of store staff is converted into the number of trading hours). In addition, the minimum wage has recently been increased. Retailers also expect a number of other negative effects: a decrease in cross-border sales and tourist traffic, lower turnover of fashion outlets in tourist cities (this is a group of weekend customers who will not come back for shopping during the weekend), a decrease in the comfort of shopping on other business days (e.g. overcrowding of parking lots). The ban on Sunday, as compared to other amendments and the in the current market environment (price pressure), results in high uncertainty.