Hawke's Bay Today

Too soon for Santa?

He’s up there, it’s early and he’s ready to deliver gifts

- Laura Wiltshire

How early is too early to start bombarding your customers with Christmas cheer?

The big day is still 48 days away but Hastings New World has gone full noise now, erecting a giant Santa on its roof on Monday night.

It’s starting to feel more like Christmas in Hawke’s Bay. Temperatur­es are picking up and pohutakawa trees are blooming.

But some customers say the hype of the season has arrived too early, and should be bottled until the start of December, begging the question how early is too early for Christmas decoration­s?

Foodstuffs NZ spokeswoma­n Antoinette Laird said people would start seeing decoration­s appearing in its supermarke­ts around the country from now on.

“The team love this time of year and each store’s decoration­s reflect their own individual­ity and local community holiday spirit. Some might even crack out a Santa hat a bit closer to Christmas.”

According to Retail NZ spokesman Greg Harford, the country’s Christmas shopping seasons starts on September 25.

“People always think Christmas is coming earlier every year, but it’s been the end of September, October for many years.”

He said the main reason was to get people thinking about both Christmas and summer early. It would build up throughout November and reach its peak in December, he said. “Christmas is often used by retailers in New Zealand as a bit of a proxy for summer. Customers who wait until December before they start thinking about what they are going to do for Christmas may miss out on what they are looking for.”

He said 13 per cent of retailers put decoration­s up by the end of October. More than half of retailers would have decoration­s up before then end of November. Nineteen per cent wouldn’t put up decoration­s at all.

A spokespers­on for Napier City Council said its decoration­s would be up a week before the Santa Parade on December 2. The decoration­s would include three trees, wreaths and banners. The Emmerson St Flower Pot would also be getting a Christmas makeover, with lilies and tinsel.

People in Hastings will see their Christmas decoration­s at a similar time, Hastings business associatio­n acting manager Kelly Nolan said. Trees would be up by the end of November, with a ceremony to switch the Christmas lights on in the city on November 29.

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 ?? Photo / Duncan Brown ?? Christmas is coming to Hawke’s Bay, with Santa making an appearance on New World Hastings.
Photo / Duncan Brown Christmas is coming to Hawke’s Bay, with Santa making an appearance on New World Hastings.

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