Nobody seems to be in any great hurry for retail therapy. While shoppers were found walking around the Avenues Mall, which also houses the popular Lulu Hypermarket, not many seemed too keen to purchase anything other than the essentials.
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Zahra Obaid, who was at the counter said that this has been the pattern since reopening the shop.
“People are coming in not with the purpose of buying but to reenact the fun of going out, since they have all been indoors for a long time,” she says.
“How long can you see the lovely outlets that sell cosmetics, perfumes, and outfits, closed? Every time I passed by these shops on our way to the hypermarket, I would feel a pang of sadness. I came today specifically to see the mall in its lively form. No, and I don’t intend to indulge in any retail therapy as my salary has taken a forty percent cut.”
Even Muscat City Centre mall wore a gaiety look with the shops open and shoppers milling the place while maintaining social distancing and wearing masks. It seems difficult at least now to bring back the buzz and action that were there before, especially with a certain reluctance in the spending pattern of people, and many clearly opting out of crowded places. Another notable sentiment that was evident was that with the salary cut and the pandemic situation prevailing, many expatriates have decided to return to their country once the commercial flights resume.
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