Dubai: Thousands of bargain hunters in the UAE are expected to descend in Dubai during a three-day mega shopping frenzy, where retailers take more than half the price off designer goodies.
This year’s The Big Clearance Sale that will kick off on Thursday will be spread across three halls at the Dubai World Trade Centre and bring together 100 top fashion, lifestyle and beauty brands that promise discounts of more than 80 per cent off apparel, shoes, bags and cosmetics.
The number of labels participating in the 2017 edition of the bargain bonanza has also doubled from only 50 in 2016, so shoppers can expect more bargain options.
A regular fixture in Dubai’s retail calendar, the shopping event is organised by the Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), an agency of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism).
The event is a great opportunity for retailers to clear the shelves of old inventory to make way for the next season’s merchandise. And with the blowout deals, shoppers also jump at the chance to update their wardrobes.
The UAE is one of the huge markets for international brands, with spending on clothing and footwear alone estimated to have reached around $13.4 billion in 2016, according to Euromonitor International.
The amount is more than twice the money that people spent on going to the parks, concerts and movies ($4.1 billion), as well as on education ($5.5 billion) and health goods and medical services ($2.3 billion).
“The Big Clearance Sale offers discerning shoppers the opportunity to refresh their wardrobes with the season’s hottest trends and new styles, while providing participating retailers an excellent platform to clear stocks before the arrival of a new season,” said Saeed Mohammad Measam Al Falasi, executive director at DFRE.
“Since this event coincides with the spring vacation for schools in the UAE, more people will have the opportunity to shop for amazing offers.”
Nikhil Chaturvedi, senior manager for marketing at Shoe Mart and Shoe Mart International, who will also be participating in the extravaganza, said the huge markdown on prices is proving to be a huge draw for UAE shoppers.
"The impressive differences between the original prices and the dramatically marked down rates draw them in, leaving the impression that these deals are just too good to pass up," Chaturvedi told Gulf News.
"Clearance merchandise isn't called an irresitible bargain for nothing. Giant reductions, and the way they're presented in warehouse sale, tap customers into some primal psychological impulses."
Unlike last year, however, the upcoming shopping event will require bargain hunters to pay a Dh10 entrance fee. But in return, they will get a “Visit and Win” raffle coupon that will be entered into a daily draw, offering a prize of Dh5,000 in cash to two winners each.
The participating brands include Aeropostale, Billionaire, Boggi, Brioni, Carpisa, Charles & Keith, Debenhams, Desigual, DKNY, Dorothy Perkins, Ecco, Ermano Scervino, Footlocker, Fossil, Guess, H & M, Hugo Boss, Kurt Geiger, Miss Selfridge, Naturalizer, Nine West, Old Navy, Oysho, Pablosky, Salsa, Steve Madden, The Children’s Place, TopShop, Uterque and Victoria Secret, among many others.
The halls will open from noon till 11pm on the first day (March 30) and from 11am to 11pm in the remaining two days.
Fans of the bargain bonanza are, however, advised that massive crowds are expected to show up at both the exhibition halls and the Dubai Metro this week, as the event is held alongside the Gitex Spring Shopper 2017, where 35,000 products and 100 leading IT and tech brands will also be showcased.