I was rather amazed to read that only 35 percent of small stores in Palma actually opened last Sunday, even though it was one of the busiest shopping days of the year combining Black Friday with early Christmas shopping. Their excuse was that staffing costs meant that they couldn´t make Sunday opening profitable. But if they don´t open they will never know.

There is talk of a possible economic slowdown and even a recession in the Balearics next year and one of the first places to suffer will be the high street. So really shops need to rake in the profits now because there are uncertain times ahead.

Palma was packed last Sunday but it was empty on Monday. I don´t think many people consider Monday as a shopping day but Sunday is obviously a big shopping day. So if they wanted to reduce staff costs the smaller shops could have opened on a Sunday and closed on a Monday.

I think certain small retailers are rather stuck in their ways and they must remember that these days with the massive growth in online shopping their must work around the shopper not the other way around. If shops are to survive they must open more often or at different times. Closing at lunch-time should be a thing of the past and they should start considering more Sunday opening, especially during the summer season. As an example shops in Gibraltar open when there is a cruise ship in port...if only Palma would follow their example, I am sure that the smaller retailers would be more profitable.


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Henry Ford / Hace 10 days

Again, my last comment (about credit cards) was sent before your last one was published. Hopefully our comments have been useful ones and have informed the readers a little bit more about life in Spain. I do have some practical knowledge about the subject, but not from a “professional” point of view, more like a hands on point of view. Both equally stressful.


Henry Ford / Hace 10 days

I forgot to mention that most consumers now use credit cards to pay for Christmas goodies, so it doesn’t really matter when the money is received, as they don’t have to cough up until the end of the following month.


S.O. / Hace 10 days

Yes of course some get 15 or 16 or even more payments a year but I didn’t bother going down that road as well as I decided it would have been ‘rizando el rizo’ a little too much for those who might read all this.

The 80s is a long time ago now but yes that’s when it became legal and when the company I worked for changed.

It sounds as though you are in the same Spanish profession as myself (was)!


Henry Ford / Hace 11 days

S.O.: My first comment was sent to the DB before yours was published, so as you will now see, it was answering Britbabe and not yourself. You are quite right that many companies divide the extra two months and pay a bit every month, but only since the middle 80’s when it became legal. Before then the law quite clearly stated that the extra bonus should be paid on the 15th of July and the 15th of December. You fail to mention that quite a few public service workers (and some private ones) sometimes get three and even four months bonus, and these are not split between the year, the same as all the rest of the public sector who receive it, like the pensioners, during the last 3 days of the previous month, or during the first 3 days of the current one. Most businesses pay when their bank manager is feeling generous.


S.O. / Hace 11 days

Mr Ford, yes I am fully aware of Spanish labour legislation. Please re-read my comment.

As I said, Spanish pensioners receive their double pension in June and November, not July and December.

Employees receive their Christmas extra month's salary in December, not in November and therefore not before Black Friday as your first comment seemed to imply, although there may be a few exceptions where companies pay it early.

However “all” employees do not receive that double pay as more and more private companies in Spain are opting to divide the annual salary into twelve equal payments (which is perfectly legal) instead of the long-established system of dividing it into fourteen with double in July and December. Hence my comment "if they get one".

I’m sure none of the MDB readers are at all interested in so much detail but as your first comment was inaccurate I just wanted to put the record straight. ;-)


Henry Ford / Hace 11 days

Yours, maybe, but were you aware that all employees, both in the private and public sector, as well as pensioners, receive an extra months salary or pension in July and December ?


S.O. / Hace 11 days

Britbabe: I think Mr Ford is probably referring to the Spanish pension Christmas bonus not the pittance the UK pay out. Spanish pensioners get double pay in June and November.

But Mr Ford: staff i.e. employees are unlikely to get their Christmas bonuses (if they get one) before later this month.


BRITBABE / Hace 11 days

Mr Ford - I had to laugh. My "eagerly awaited Christmas Bonus" amounted to €11.64. It would have cost me more than that for the return trip into Palma on Sunday !


Henry Ford / Hace 12 days

Mr Moore, two things were the cause that Sunday was busy. Firstly, and probably most importantly, most staff and pensioners had just been paid their eagerly awaited Christmas bonus. Secondly, most people have Sundays off but work and/or take their kids to school on Mondays. You can’t shop and work at the same time. There is a reason why the menu del día is generally not an option on weekends.