Jakartans enjoy late night shopping, not the offers

Indonesians pack a busy shopping mall on the 19th day of the holy month of Ramadan in Jakarta on July 28, 2013. 

JAKARTA - Dita Wirasti, 18, was thrilled and bought a bucket bag she fancied right way when she saw that it was 80 per cent off at a retail store at Senayan City mall in South Jakarta during a midnight sale event on Saturday night.

"The original price was Rp 1 million [S$120] and I bought it for only Rp 200,000," she said while showing off the bag.

Dita, who shopped with her family, said, however, that other than the bag, none of the other items that she bought were significantly discounted.

"The passport holder and cosmetics I bought were both only 20 per cent off," she said.

Dita said that although the sales were not as big as she had expected, she enjoyed shopping late at night during Ramadhan as she had more energy compared to shopping while she was fasting.

"Me and my family plan to shop until 1 a.m.," she said.

A number of shopping malls in Jakarta held midnight sale events to cater to more buyers ahead of Idul Fitri.

Hundreds of people, with their friends, spouses and children, flocked to shops, trying to grab the best offers they could find.

Some buyers, however, enjoyed the extended mall hours rather than the offers.

Like Dita, 27-year-old Cahaya Kinanti said the discounts offered by many tenants were regular discounts also available during the day as well.

"Some items that were given huge discounts were just old collections in bad condition," she said, adding that she eventually only purchased two clothing items.

She also complained about the crowds, saying that lines at cash registers were too long and that it was hard to find parking spots.

Cahaya, who was on the hunt for wedding items, said, however, she was grateful with for the extended store hours as she usually got off work late.

"I don't plan on being here long but least I don't have to shop hastily," said Cahaya.

Senayan City marketing director Veri Y. Setiady said his company offered 25 hours of non-stop sales so customers could shop in a more relaxed manner and experience a different shopping nuance.

Veri said Senayan City also provided entertainment, vouchers for sahur (pre-dawn meal) and free parking to entice shopaholics to stay longer.

"As many as 85 per cent of our tenants are participating," he said.

Veri said his company had targeted that transactions would be four times higher than those during regular midnight sales.

Joy Agatha, a marketing manager of Debenhams, one of tenants at Senayan City, said her store applied progressive discounts for customers.

"The discounts will increase as buyers shop later," she said, adding that some of the brands offered up to 50 per cent discounts.

Besides Senayan City, other malls that held midnight sale events were Kuningan City, Gandaria City, Mall Alam Sutera, Central Park, Kota Kasablanka and Mal Artha Gading.

As Jakarta has entered the last weekend of the fasting month before the exodus starts, many communities also held activities late on Saturday, including several groups of cyclists and runners.

The country's largest mobile telecommunications operator ,Telkomsel, for instance, held a 10-kilometer (10K) and 5K run that started at 11 p.m. on Saturday at the National Monument (Monas) Park, Central Jakarta, with over 1,000 people participating.

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