15 September 2023

Hurry, you only have 100 days until Christmas!

| Jarryd Rowley
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Big W Christmas tree

Several high-profile stores have already put Christmas trees and decorations on display. Photo: Jarryd Rowley.

September is a bit of a nothing month when it comes to worldwide holidays and celebrations.

It’s a dead zone in terms of public holidays, and school holidays only really kick in towards the end of the month.

It serves as a kind of halfway point between Easter and Christmas, and that awkward American holiday with all the skeletons is still weeks away.

Or so I first thought.

Earlier this week as I cruised the aisles of my local Big W, I was surprised to see three men in hi-vis vests setting up a space in the centre of the store for … Christmas trees!

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At first glance, I thought, “Huh, 2023 has blown past”, but upon taking a second to think about it, I realised – “We’re only in September …”

There are still about 100 shopping days (more than a quarter of a year) until 25 December and we’re still more than a month away from Halloween (if you’re into that kind of thing), but surely it is too early to be putting Christmas trees and decorations on sale?

It is not an isolated incident either; upon walking into Kmart only moments later, several Christmas-themed T-shirts, decorations and confectionary already filled a number of shelves at the front of the store.

Kmart Christmas shirts

Christmas themed T-shirts have begun popping up on racks across Kmart. Photo: Jarryd Rowley.

As consumers, we’ve grown accustomed to hot cross buns hitting the shelves on New Year’s Day, and we generally accept that Santa and his reindeer will be on the loose in stores in November.

But surely having an entire school term (and then some!) between the day decorations first go on sale and the day they’re supposed to celebrate is a step too far.

According to Big W staff, the reason behind the ridiculously early sales is to “allow every family/customer a chance to purchase the tree and decorations that they want”.

Now that sounds fair enough, but is anyone really purchasing full-price stock two and a half months before December even begins?

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According to a Kmart checkout operator, a limited number of customers have been spotted purchasing Christmas-themed products, but the peak of public interest still lies in Halloween-related stock.

Like it or not, Aussies are now accustomed to ghoulish Halloween displays and confectionary filling the shops at this time of year, but to jump straight to Christmas feels wrong.

Now that the big family stores have led the charge, other businesses are likely to follow to keep up. Before you know it, we’ll be swamped by Santas, plastic trees and fake snow all competing with the bats, witches and skeletons for shelf space.

At this point, I would not be surprised if they wheel out the Easter Bunny as well.

So quick, don’t miss out! Beat the rush and avoid that Christmas shopping anxiety – there are less than 100 shopping days until Christmas!

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