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Are you one of those people who queues for sales at 6 am? Confess, and tell me why.

260 replies

Iamthewombat · 28/12/2019 00:37

I’ve seen a number of threads on the subject of ‘all shops should close on Boxing Day, blah blah’ but what I want to know is this:

If you are one of those people waiting outside shops on Boxing Day at 6 am (or earlier), why do you do it? The bargains can’t be that good.

We visited friends in Liverpool today and they showed me photos in the local paper of people queuing outside Next at 5.30 am, outside Lush at 6 am etc.


The paper had interviewed some of the queuers (is that a word?). Their reasons were as follows:

Woman outside Lush: “the gift sets are 50% off so I can get £400 worth for £200!”

Sorry love, they aren’t going to last until Christmas 2020. When I assume you will attempt to re-gift them.

Women outside Next: “It’s a tradition for us and we come every year but we are trying to buy less because we are worried about the environment” (!!!!! I wonder if Next sell self-awareness?)

Genuinely, why do you do it? Is it because you are trying to recreate the Blitz spirit? Is it so that you have something to talk about?

I’d kind of understand if it’s a young person who is label-conscious and wants to snag a particular designer brand from Flannels or Harvey Nics and can only afford it in the sale but Next and bloody Lush? Come on! Neither are a motherlode of sought after quality items at drastically reduced prices, are they?

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?


You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

Bowerbird5 · 28/12/2019 06:20

I used to go but haven’t been for years.
I was always up early anyway and went to Laura Ashley and Next. I bought DD next years winter wool coat which I could not afford the full price of. I used to get things for the boys too.

Years later my sister worked for Next. She was there till very late on Christmas Eve and then about 4am which meant she had to leave about 3:30am and she had to work a full shift. She found a job locally. Although she liked the job at Next she was on a zero hour contract and expected to work every Christmas and she was a single parent.

lborgia · 28/12/2019 06:26

Hi Wombat - the tradition goes back to the 70s.

It wasn’t necessarily Boxing Day, but “first day of the January sales”.

People used to buy really big tickets items, places such as Harrods, Selfridges, some of the regional department stores, would have ONE Sealy double bed at 50% off, and ONE Dralon sofa for 50% off... maybe 5 washing machines... and so on. Therefore people used to queue to buy something they’d saved for, at a vastly reduced price. These were still really expensive compared to salary.

Whole China sets I remember....

Anyway, I’m old, but remember when I was really broke getting tops and skirts for work at Next. Sensible, lots of black, very 90s !

lborgia · 28/12/2019 06:31

Like this!! Although I also now see the tradition started in the 20’s!!

Are you one of those people who queues for sales at 6 am? Confess, and tell me why.
Dipsydoodle · 28/12/2019 06:35

I agree. I'm a Postie and the sheer volume of stuff people buy sickens me; I knock at some doors every single day for 6 weeks and even yesterday, first day back at work after my amazing break of 2 days' duration, I knocked those same damned doors again with more parcels

You must be our postie!

We buy almost everything online so get a lot of parcels, plus I run my own business so get a lot of stuff to do with that. I'm glad that sickens you though Confused even though that's kind of why you have a job in the first place.

Cookit · 28/12/2019 06:39

I worked the Next sale a long time a go. That was pre-internet shopping though (or I guess it did maybe exist but no-one did it and everyone did their shopping on the high street).
I didn’t mind doing it. I got paid. I was a student and the money was useful. Most people working it wanted to be there or didn’t mind. I did still find it all bizarre though as I’d never queued like that for a sale myself and it seemed just such an unpleasant experience to shop in .. shoes were elasticated together for ease and we were constantly tidying but everything was just thrown everywhere..
it would never occur to me to get out of my warm house and out of my food coma to go to the shops on Boxing Day. I haven’t bought a thing this year but in previous years I’ve bought the odd thing online.

speakout · 28/12/2019 06:41

I agree. I'm a Postie and the sheer volume of stuff people buy sickens me; I knock at some doors every single day for 6 weeks and even yesterday, first day back at work after my amazing break of 2 days' duration, I knocked those same damned doors again with more parcels

You must be my postie too then! I get 5-6 packets or parcels every day.
Sorry if that is an issue.
Sorry if that

justdoityourself · 28/12/2019 06:44

The next sale used to be great, literally everything used to be in the sale at half price or less, and when my dc were little I would buy clothes in bigger sizes to last them through the year and save a fortune.

What I still don't understand, is why the shops don't just open at a reasonable time. They'd still have people queuing to come in at 9 but the staff and customers could have a lie in!

PerfectPretender · 28/12/2019 06:49

I've never done this, it sounds hellish. Elbowing people for clothes I'm not even sure I like or or if it fits.

I have considered nosing about my local Tesco before it shuts on Christmas Eve, but I normally don't have room in the fridge by that point so don't bother.

Clarke45 · 28/12/2019 06:55

When my son was little I used to get up early and head to the sale. I used to stock up on the next age group. Good quality clothes at 50% off- those days are now long gone and he refuses wear anything that is not 'designer' now 😂

RingtheBells · 28/12/2019 06:59

No, I get everything online in the sales on Christmas Eve and use my Next VIP slot for Next sale, no need to queue

schnubbins · 28/12/2019 06:59

I used to do this with my mum in the 1980's .We were not that well off and reductions were great in the posher shops.Plus my mum loves a bargain and never ever pays the full price for anything , even now.I couldn't be bothered with Sales .I always ask myself would I buy it if it was full price or am I buying it because its reduced.The thought of going to the shops after Christmas is mind boggling to me now though.

Snowy111 · 28/12/2019 07:07

I don’t understand why, but the marketing people know it works with some people hence it’s still a thing.

Would much rather be having a nice lie in after Xmas day. I’m quite disgusted with the excesses and rampant consumerism of Christmas without rushing out to do it again!

Deathraystare · 28/12/2019 07:09

I have in the past shopped in Next around sale time but NOT Boxing Day and NOT silly hours of the morning! Mostly now I avoid sales items as mostly shite stuff. Having a break from buying clothes as well!

I still remember the Black Friday thing when only one guy went through Curry's. The press turned out and he was the only one going through the door!!!

stuckinthemiddlewithtwats · 28/12/2019 07:21

I don't get this either especially as the VIP sale starts online days before. There was sod all in it this year so surely sod all left in the shops too. I don't live near a huge Next so we probably don't get the huge bargains that others talk about.
I popped in last night and got about 5 things which there's no way I'd have queued at 6am on Boxing Day for.

I do know someone who used to queue and she spent ridiculous amounts just to send most of it back anyway. 10yrs or so ago I think the sale prices were much more of a bargain, nowadays next always have stuff half price anyway.

lalafafa · 28/12/2019 07:29

The next sale is a con. There’s a few good bits then they ship in the shite from their warehouses of non loved stock. Yes the staff have first pick, you’re fools if you queue at 5am.

Genzeee · 28/12/2019 07:32

Who cares if that’s what they want to do. Mumsnet are weird about the sales

hammeringinmyhead · 28/12/2019 07:36

I don't really get the Next queue but it's the only time of year Lush do a sale. Do not underestimate Lush fanatics! They aren't buying to re-gift - it's all for themselves. I have a friend who went and is splitting the massive gift box with her other friend.

It's all so overpriced anyway compared to a few years ago that I'm sure they are paying what I used to, full price.

Weffiepops · 28/12/2019 07:36

I was at my local Next at 5.40 this Boxing Day. It's an annual ritual, I spent £160 on work clothes and shoes, saved me a fortune!!

Sceptre86 · 28/12/2019 07:37

Not sure why it is so hard to can get decent quality clothes for less than half price. When you are on a budget, it helps. We mostly get the kids clothes from there and have queued for the sale three times. This year I managed to get a VIP slot and so did it all online and will probably continue to do so in this way. Dh and I usually separate and I will pick stuff for our daughter and him our son. We then find a corner to check stuff over so anything we don't want gets put back on the sale shelves. Our local next sale has gotten busier with more people queuing than before. You see the same faces, find out how their xmas went and their is a bit of camaraderie. We are also usually only waiting outside for around fifteen minutes if you get there at 5.30am as they then let you queue inside in out shopping centre. Also, we would be back in the car and home by 7am.

PurpleFlower1983 · 28/12/2019 07:38

My dad did this one year and got a suit he had been coveting for £150, it should have been £350. It was sold out online and he’d found it in store. He doesn’t make a habit of sale shopping (or shopping generally to be honest) but he loves that suit and it looks great on him.

PurpleFlower1983 · 28/12/2019 07:40

I have to admit I was on the Jojo website early on Boxing Day and bought my DD a couple of coats and dresses. I couldn’t justify full price.

Roselilly36 · 28/12/2019 07:45

I agree, absolute madness, and to queue in the rain can’t believe people would be so daft, but each to their own.

lifeonaloop · 28/12/2019 07:45

We opened at 9am on Boxing Day. A lot of customers were bloody horrible, rude and even abusive.

Any customer is rude with me or any other member of staff and they get thrown out Xmas SmileXmas Smile
Something about a few ££ off turns people into animals.

onemorecupofcoffeefortheroad · 28/12/2019 07:52

I once knew a girl who always did the Boxing Day Next sale - getting out of bed at stupid o'clock to queue in the freezing cold - I had never heard of it before. I was gobsmacked - she was quite well off too. She cited all the reasons mentioned in this thread for going, great bargains to be had etc.
She did ask me to go with her once but I don't like shopping at the best of times and after all that shopping before Christmas I couldn't quite face it.

Dontdisturbmenow · 28/12/2019 07:53

I used to be curious by the Next sale, but could never go as had my two little ones and no-one to care for them, until the year their dad insisted on having them over night Xmas. I cried myself out that I wasn't with them, but consoled myself that I'd be able to finally do that Next sale thing. Got up (when could have a very rare lie in), went there, and it must have been the only year in 20 that they were not open. I cried so hard with the unfairness, you'd thought it was the end of the world!

Yet when I finally got to do it again, 5 years or so later, I was so disappointed. As someone said above, the sales were only on crap items, stuff I wouldn't have bought anyway. Then I realise that Next is actually quite poor quality. I haven't shopped there, sales or not for many years.

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