THE BARGAIN hunters have been out in force taking advantage of the January sales, which in some shops started as early as St Stephen's Day.
For the first time, The Marshes opened its doors the day after Christmas, giving shoppers the opportunity to spend gift vouchers and escape from the sofa.
'We've had a very good run-up to Christmas and were particularly happy that people chose to shop locally which is vitally important,' said manager Harry Traynor. 'I don't think we had the same volume of people heading north. There is very little difference in pricing now and with fuel costs it doesn't really make sense for people to go across the border.'
He said that efforts made in the town centre with reduced parking charges had helped give trade a boost. 'We also reduced our parking by 50% for the five weeks up to Christmas.
Shops in the centre were also reporting a slight increase in their sterling take.'
'Sales are going very well and are definitely up on last year,' reported staff at Pulse Pacemaker in Park Street. ' The Sterling rate is making a difference and we have a fair few shoppers coming from across the border this year.'
'The sales are going quite well and we had a big crowd when we opened our doors at lunchtime on December 27th,' a spokesperson for McKenna Man said, again reporting an increase in cross border shoppers.
'It looks like business is up on the same period last year,' said David Lally of Lallys Electrical. ' The two big sellers this year were television, especially higher end televisions, and tablets.'
'Tablets like the Samsung Galaxy were really huge this year while for the younger market there were tablets from €99 to €299.' Brendan Reid said that business was similar to last year in his Park Street sports and footwear store. 'It's going ok. There's a lot of talk about a lift in Dublin with a lot of sterling sales but it hasn't really happened in Dundalk.'