The so-called non-essential shops were once again allowed to open their doors on Saturday morning.

Very good news for traders, four weeks before Christmas.

But if customers are back, attendance is nowhere near the usual December.


Emmanuel Macron's announcements on Tuesday evening were greeted by traders with great relief.

On Saturday, at the 4 Temps shopping center in La Défense, one of the busiest in France, customers in a hurry found products available for direct sale.

Among them, Gabriel, a young man tired of being confined to his home: "There are a lot of non-essential products that we need even a little bit, if only to take care of ourselves at home. came to buy decorative items to feel good at home ", he tells Europe 1.

>> Find Europe evening weekend in podcast and replay here 

A "zen and serene" opening

In a nearby department, a mother looks at Christmas toys with her daughter.

And as soon as a customer leaves the store, another immediately enters.

"Like any self-respecting trader, we know what the month of December represents. It is important to have been able to reopen in the most serene and zen way possible", explains Gérald, responsible for trade.


- Coronavirus: follow the evolution of the situation Saturday, November 28

15% fewer customers

Indeed, traders must respect the rule of 8 square meters per customer.

But according to Thibault Desmidt, director of the 4 Temps shopping center, this gauge does not prevent attendance: "We are very happy with the attendance since Saturday morning. There are people, but we manage to manage it. People are well disciplined and respect the distances in the queues. And we find a smile on the faces of our traders, "he adds.

However, there were 15% fewer customers compared to a classic Saturday in December, but "it's a reassuring start" according to Thibault Desmidt, after a month of closure.