A relatively small crowd of last-minute Christmas shoppers descended on local shops and the Valencia Town Center on Sunday, bringing an end to a spike in foot traffic seen throughout the prior week, merchants reported.
“Right now, it’s mild,” said Macy’s cashier and jewelry associate Patricia Zamora. “But it’s been at least four or five times more than this throughout the whole day. Yesterday, also.”
“There’s been traffic, yeah, but it’s not super chaotic,” said fellow Macy’s cashier Emily Gutierrez. “It was very calm. We’re handling it very well.”
Other outlets reported the same phenomenon and added that the majority of their Christmas sales appeared to come days in advance.
“It was busy yesterday,” said H&M sales advisor Jayson Pimentel. “There was definitely a lot of people in here. Just late-minute shopping. A lot of our items were getting sold.”
For the shoppers themselves, the small crowd came as a welcome surprise, allowing them to buy their gifts without the chaotic holiday hassle.
“It’s been good,” Macy’s customer Regine, who did not provide her last name, said of her shopping experience. “The lines are short. It’s quick. The lines were longer the last few days.”
“It’s the first day I came to the mall, and I was dreading it,” said fellow customer Susan, who also did not provide her last name, adding that she was grateful for the short lines and open parking spaces.
“It’s definitely slowed down, and the store looks nicer and cleaner than it was yesterday,” Pimentel said.
However, other workers were concerned about the light last-minute traffic.
“Sometimes when it’s slower, then it’s like, we kind of need business,” said JCPenney sales floor assistant Bradley Iverson, who partially blamed his store’s slow business on potential customers instead choosing to spend the day out of town or with their families, as Christmas falls on a Monday this year. He also voiced skepticism about the idea that a larger wave of customers would arrive in the late afternoon or evening.
“I know a lot of people are, like, rushing, like, for Christmas presents and everything like that,” he said. “But then also, maybe they have plans like earlier today.”