A Southland beautician says business has been as busy as “Christmas on steroids” on the first day of trading at Level 2.
However, the director of the Southland Chamber of Commerce warns that post-lockdown spending will not be as strong as last year.
Leaving Auckland, the country went to Alert Level 2 at 11.59pm on Tuesday night.
Gail Boyle, owner of Equality Beauty Therapy in Windsor, Anwar Kargil, likened the business to a holiday season on Wednesday, saying it was like “Christmas on steroids”.
“Customers are happy to get out of the house, talk to different people and spend money,” he said.
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“Because we went into lockdown faster. [than last year]I think people are under a lot of pressure.
The most popular procedure on Wednesday? “Take care,” Boyle said with a laugh.
Neil McCara, director of the Southland Chamber of Commerce, said spending after the lockdown would probably not be as significant as last year.
He said nationwide lockdowns and wage subsidies were high last year, prompting people to spend.
McAra said it was difficult for the business to meet the general cost of the lockdown, as it was about size.
However, businesses are digging their pockets to meet the bills.
Macara said the wage subsidy could be 40 to 50 percent of the wage, and the maintenance payment was for one week only.
However, he believed that businesses have their own plans.
“I think people were more prepared for the lockdown this year.”
First Inn Cafe in Reverton opened early Wednesday, and owner Kendra Kitson said customers love local support.
“Business was really good, we did great business.”
Kitson said business was on par with a stable winter day trade, and the cafe acquired all its stock.
Kitson said he had a lot of regulars, some new faces, and people had no problem signing in or wearing masks.
He said the business lent its experience from last year’s lockdown, and had a plan.
“We only knew from the last moment, we can go through it, so we can go through it again.”
A group of three people was waiting at the front door of Anwar Kargil Gym at midnight, said Sid Cumming, owner of World Health and Fitness.
Ashley Graham, owner of Grace, said people are buying a lot of gifts from the Winton store.
Rachel Holland, owner of Anwar Cargill’s Lace Sheikh Hair Design, said she would do extra work late at night to handle the lock caused by the lockdown.
Holland was reminding staff that some people struggled during the lockdown, and had the opportunity to offer something positive when customers were in the chair.
People were more excited after last year’s nationwide lockdown, the Netherlands said, which they put in front of them knowing what to expect from the rules.
The Netherlands had expected some customers to be reluctant to return to the salon, but this was not the case, and it expected to be busy in the near future.
Alan Arnold, co-owner of Ziff’s Cafe & Bar and Buster Crabb, said the two locations would probably reach 50 people by Wednesday night.
He said he would have more staff on the first night to see how things went.