Christmas is the biggest shopping season of the calendar year. While the run up to the festive period is a time for buying gifts, the sales from Boxing Day onwards are traditionally a chance to treat ourselves in the sales.
But, with a major cost of living crisis still affecting the UK, shops are already reporting that consumer footfall is down. According to trade body the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the number of high street visits fell 13.6% in the four weeks to 26 November 2022 compared to the same period before the Covid pandemic in 2019 - the last year of comparable data.
NationalWorld has put together tips on how to budget your way through the festive season. For those who do feel able to spend, we have also put together several guides on sales shopping - including at Next and Boots.
While some key retailers are open over the bank holiday dates, some opening hours are set to be restricted. This is especially true for the hospitality industry, with the organisation representing the UK’s pubs, bars, hotels and restaurants - UKHospitality - saying 32% of its members would be reducing their hours over the festive period.
So, when will high street stores be open for the bank holiday today (27 December)? Here’s everything you need to know about retail opening hours over the coming week.
Why is there a bank holiday today?
With Christmas falling on a Sunday this year, it means Boxing Day was a bank holiday Monday.
With the UK always getting two bank holidays over Christmas, it means another bank holiday is taking place on Tuesday (27 December). This is because Christmas fell on a weekend day.
What are bank holiday opening hours?
As with any bank holiday, you should expect opening hours to be different to those you would get on a typical working day. They will be more likely to resemble Sunday hours - although some businesses may also keep their doors open for longer.
The best thing to do in advance is to check with your local stores to see what’s going to be open and when before heading out.
Which shops will be open for bank holiday today?
Rather than what shops will be open, the story of Christmas 2022 has been what businesses will be closed. NationalWorld has produced a list of which major chains will be keeping their doors closed for what is typically the start of the post-Christmas sales period.
The traditional TV news shots of people queuing outside retailers and then scrambling inside to find the best deals before anyone else appear to have been confined to history - largely as a result of the move to online shopping and the pandemic.
But many shops will still be opening their doors, with convenience stores in particular likely to be accepting business. Here is a list of chains that have indicated they will be open for the Christmas bank holidays, and how to find out the opening hours of your closest store.
The major retailer will be operating slightly shorter hours in some locations on 27 December.
Bank holiday hours of 8am until 8pm will be observed, although there may be some local variations. To find out exactly when your nearest store will open and close, you should visit the store locator tool on its website.
The retailer has returned to regular opening hours today, with its next set of holiday opening hours set to kick in on New Year’s Day (10am until 4pm) and the bank holiday on 2 January (7am until 8pm).
Its store locator tool will tell you exactly when your local Morrisons will be open.
Co-op stores will be heading back to regular hours today after having shorter hours on Boxing Day.
Here is a link to its store locator, which will tell you exactly when your closest store will be open from and until.
For those seeking the ultimate retail distraction this Christmas, Ikea could well be the store for you. The Swedish home and furniture store will be welcoming customers between 9pm and 8pm on 27 December.
However, as with the other stores, it’s best to check local opening hours on Ikea’s website before heading out.
The cut-price fashion store is set to be open today. The retailer will continue to observe slightly shorter holiday hours in some locations.
To see what’s happening at your local store, visit the Primark website for the latest on its opening hours.
If you’ve forgotten to pack enough deodorant or make up for your Christmas stay with your relatives (or, you just want to check out the Boots post-Christmas sale), have no fear. Boots will be opening its stores over the Christmas bank holidays.
However, be warned that opening hours are different to a normal business day, with some stores not opening until 10.30am and likely to be closed by 4pm. So, be sure to check your local store’s opening times before hitting the high street.
A key business for those seeking to post items or do some banking, you should be able to use Post Offices in most areas this Christmas.
Some branches are still closed today, so it’s worth checking your closest branch’s website before heading out. On Wednesday 28 December many sites will be hit by industrial action, with the Post Office listing branches it says will be shut on the day on its Post Office branch finder.
With many shoppers still likely to head out in search of a bargain, you can expect H&M stores to be fairly busy after Boxing Day.
The fashion retailer has gone back to regular operating hours on 27 December, with many stores open from 9am until 6pm. To find out when you can go to your local outlet, visit H&M’s store locator tool.
The retailer, which stocks Iceland’s food offering through a strategic partnership launched in 2018, is expected to be open between 9am and 6pm on 27 December.
But be sure to check your nearest outlet’s opening times before heading out to avoid disappointment.
If you need to head out to B&M Bargains, you should be able to do so between 8am and 9pm on Tuesday.
But, you guessed it, it’s probably a good idea to check your local store’s opening hours before heading out. Here is a link to its store locator.
The homeware and furniture store is set to open its doors to those seeking a bargain from Boxing Day onwards.
You should be able to get in between 9am and 9pm today, but be sure to double-check your local outlet’s website before heading out.