Christmas repeat of a 24-hour mall weekend?
If concern over employee compensation was off the table, is another 24-hour mall weekend a good idea?
December 16, 2012 9:39 by Muhammad Aldalou
The 24-hour opening weekends at various Dubai malls that ran prior to and through the Eid al Adha holidays brought a number of things. For one, it was the arrest of a half-naked man at the Dubai Mall who strolled around in the early hours of the morning wearing nothing but his boxer shorts. All jokes aside though (no promises), what it really brought was a division.
On one hand many felt excited at the prospect of a 24-hour opening as an excuse to head down to the mall at 5 o’clock in the morning – if for nothing else than to see if other people were there too. When the Eid was over, Kipp discussed whether the idea was a success and according to one of our readers, it was. “The concept of shopping all night long is a great idea! I actually woke up at 4 am to be at the mall early. It was awesome! I hate the crowds in the malls and being able to shop early in the morning where there’s less people is a relief,” she wrote.
On the other hand, the announcement of the extension raised a lot of concern, particularly among the Twitter community in Dubai – who pride themselves on being more vocal. The burning question was whether the staff will be forced or pressured to work overtime and if so, will they be compensated fairly? And that’s exactly the question we posed to Majid Al Futtaim Properties at the time to which they said: “We will not interfere with the retailers… but I am certain they will provide adequate compensation and abide by Dubai labour law.”
Finally, there were those that simply questioned the logic behind it, calling it extravagant, unnecessary and a waste. From a retail standpoint, it was the ultimate experiment and a great public relations stunt but shortly after it ended, Gulf News reported that sales in many retail stores in the late hours of the night were rather ‘sluggish’ and when Kipp happened to be at a mall at 3 am, most stores were quite deserted with the exception of restaurants and cafes.
As Christmas approaches, Kipp has been wondering whether it would be wise for retailers to try it again or is there a fear of having too much of a good thing? We asked our readers and provided them with creative options (if I do say so myself) and from the looks of it – the results so far aren’t too encouraging.
Oh dear, not again! 30.95%
Yes, please! 28.57%
Worse idea ever! 23.81%
Do what you want. I’m not going! 16.67%
Kipp has also received some direct responses for the proposal and so far, they’ve all been negative. We’re looking for some more reasons why there should or shouldn’t be a 24-hour mall weekend. Humour us!