EL CORTE Inglés department store has brought forward its summer sales for the first time in history, with prices due to be slashed from this coming Friday (June 30).
Although Spanish shops have been allowed, by law, to hold sales at any time of the year and as often as they wish, the majority – especially national and international chains – stick to the twice-yearly post-Christmas and summer calendar, with discounts ranging from 30% to 80% in late December to early February and over July and most of August.
El Corte Inglés, present in all Spain's major cities and also in Portugal, will start its sales on Thursday, June 29 at 22.00 – just after its shops shut – for online customers.
Discounts start at 50% on a vast selection of household items, fashion and accessories, most of which are top-branded goods, and are likely to rise to 70% in the weeks that follow.
The department store's own-branded budget fashion line, Sfera, already started its sales a week ago, as did other cut-price high-street brands like Cortefiel, Springfield, H&M and underwear firm Women's Secret, plus designer chain Bimba & Lola.
Their wares are now on sale at between 50% and 60% off.
The sales help bring in more cash, and also create more jobs – an additional 155,000 people will be taken on by retail outlets for the summer, says recruitment agency Adecco, which predicts temporary jobs for the three months will rise by around 7% this year.
Typically, job offers go up by 20% to 30% in summer and after Christmas compared with the rest of the year to cover the extra trade.
The average resident in Spain – out of the 44% who plan to shop in the sales – will spend around €149, according to a discount retail website.