Why do shopping centers close early on weekends

Shopping centers want to unlock on Sundays

Richard Lugner, for example, who runs Lugner City in Vienna, would like to open on Sundays from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. That would still have half the Sunday free to go to church. And in contrast to the catering trade, employees receive a surcharge, which is an incentive especially for younger people, said Lugner on Monday.

Various suggestions are circulating

Peter Schaider, head of the Auhof Center, would like ten open Sundays this year and ten next year. Christoph Andexlinger, Center Manager of SES Spar European Shopping Centers, is open on six Sundays a year. “The coronavirus crisis pulled the ground from under our feet like lightning overnight. Opening it on six Sundays a year, we think, would therefore be a measure that would help stationary retail and the jobs associated with it, ”Andexlinger said on Sunday, according to a report in the daily newspaper“ Austria ”.

Shopping centers: operators on the barricades

The shops in shopping centers have been closed for six weeks now. Exceptions apply to grocery stores, drug stores, pharmacies and tobacconists. On May 2nd, however, the shopping centers will be able to resume full operation and all shops will open. However, gastronomy is not one of them. It is only allowed to open from May 15th. Andexlinger hopes that at least the take-away restaurants will be able to open on May 2nd.

"Revise the 20 square meter rule"

The SES center manager appealed to the government to revise the rule that only one customer may be in the store per 20 square meters. “No retailer, service provider or restaurateur will stick to the 20 m2 rule per customer in the long term. It would mean the end of many companies and their jobs. Every day counts when this parameter is significantly reduced. "

The Vienna Chamber of Commerce recently acted cautiously at the request of Radio Vienna: It was still too early to talk about individual proposals, according to President Walter Ruck's office. The thousands of Viennese dealers would be faced with an unprecedented challenge. Ways must be found quickly to secure business and jobs. Ruck wants a broad discussion that goes beyond opening hours immediately after the end of the crisis.

Open on Sundays: 50 ads

Meanwhile, some grocery stores and small supermarkets apparently tried to gain economic benefits by circumventing the opening ban on Sunday. This was the conclusion reached by the immediate measures group in Vienna, which carried out key checks with the market office on Sunday. Of the 110 advertisements placed, almost half related to the Opening Hours Act.

Twelve employees were on duty, 54 companies were examined carefully. 50 of the 110 ads related to violations of the Sunday opening ban, it said on Monday. In addition, various coronavirus protective measures were not adhered to: from one meter distance to the lack of mouth and nose protection for sellers and customers to bread and pastries that were taken from the shelves with bare hands.

Substantial fines

The inspectors also came across three places that had been unlocked without authorization and were immediately blocked by the authorities. The operators would have to expect substantial fines, it said. “In these difficult times, the focus is on solidarity and mutual support. However, if the relevant laws and rules of the game are deliberately not adhered to, we have to intervene by means of controls and reports, ”said operations team leader Walter Hillerer. Further focus actions are planned.