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Will Allowing Sunday Shopping in France Make a Big Difference?

Any shopaholic who's been to France knows about the law which mandates that shops be closed on Sundays — unless they are located in tourist areas and sell food or books. President Nicolas Sarkozy is not so happy with this ban. "Is it normal that on a Sunday, when Madame Obama wants to go to the Paris shops with her daughters, I have to make phone calls to have them open?" he recently complained. Lawmakers are currently debating a proposed bill that asks to lift restrictions on Sunday trading. If it passes, the number of tourist areas could increase from the current 500 to 5,000, and all types of retailers can open their doors. Do you think allowing Sunday shopping in France would make a big difference?
Source: The Richard Avedon Foundation

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MuffinGal MuffinGal 7 years
I completely agree with Advah. Who needs seven days of shopping?
AmandaKrups AmandaKrups 7 years
I don't understand why shops being open on Sunday would make employees have to work a extra day. Some people would work Sunday-Thursday, some would work Tuesday-Saturday, etc. Just because the shop is open a extra day doesn't mean everyone actually has to work an extra day. I work Monday-Friday and need the weekends to do errands. What would I have done this weekend if Home Depot, Bed, Bath & Beyond and multiple furniture stores were not open on Sunday? I wouldn't have gotten anything done!
dressedsofine dressedsofine 7 years
I agree the stores should remaim closed. In fact I think they should still close in the US too. It gives everyone a break and a chance to relax. Madame Obama should respect France's culture and not ask them to open just for her. She can go shop in France any day she wants.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
My reasoning for believing the law should be lifted isn't that tourists will feel more comfortable, it's that I'm against any law that I feel is extraneous.Additionally, to all of the people who are commenting that these people need a day off, it's highly unlikely that they would be working 7 days a week if the stores were open. Even in the U.S., where people tend to work longer workweeks, those who work in retail full time still work five-day weeks, it just may not be five days in a row. :oy:
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
My reasoning for believing the law should be lifted isn't that tourists will feel more comfortable, it's that I'm against any law that I feel is extraneous. Additionally, to all of the people who are commenting that these people need a day off, it's highly unlikely that they would be working 7 days a week if the stores were open. Even in the U.S., where people tend to work longer workweeks, those who work in retail full time still work five-day weeks, it just may not be five days in a row. :oy:
lalelu87 lalelu87 7 years
As a lot of others already mentioned having the shops closed on a Saturday is European, I think it's good cause the people working in that busisness deserve a day off just like anybody else.I think it tells quite a lot if you can't even go without shopping for one day, furthermore this is a traditiona thing and why should we change it just so the tourists can feel 'right at home' in a different country, doesn't really make sense in my opinion.BTW how about you consider buying a Travel Guide before going somewhere to inform yourself about the local customs, you wouldn't have all of these 'negative' surprises...
lalelu87 lalelu87 7 years
As a lot of others already mentioned having the shops closed on a Saturday is European, I think it's good cause the people working in that busisness deserve a day off just like anybody else. I think it tells quite a lot if you can't even go without shopping for one day, furthermore this is a traditiona thing and why should we change it just so the tourists can feel 'right at home' in a different country, doesn't really make sense in my opinion. BTW how about you consider buying a Travel Guide before going somewhere to inform yourself about the local customs, you wouldn't have all of these 'negative' surprises...
snowysakurasky snowysakurasky 7 years
i think there is a large mall, Chatelet les Halles, which is open sundays in 'downtown' Paris. So its not as if there is nothing. When you first move to France it can me be shocking that all conveniences are not at your fingertips, but its sad that Sarkozy is bringing so much globalization to Paris. And couldn't First lady Michelle wait? Quelle diva! I usually like her but really!
snowysakurasky snowysakurasky 7 years
i think there is a large mall, Chatelet les Halles, which is open sundays in 'downtown' Paris. So its not as if there is nothing. When you first move to France it can me be shocking that all conveniences are not at your fingertips, but its sad that Sarkozy is bringing so much globalization to Paris. And couldn't First lady Michelle wait? Quelle diva! I usually like her but really!
Michaelrcks Michaelrcks 7 years
YES!
Michaelrcks Michaelrcks 7 years
YES!
Advah Advah 7 years
I knew Sarkozy was an ass, but that's the most obnoxious comment I've heard in a long time. What kind of society do we live in if we can't handle having ONE day out of seven where we can't go shopping?! Surely the urge of buying can wait for a day! And if it can't, then it's a different issue..
Advah Advah 7 years
I knew Sarkozy was an ass, but that's the most obnoxious comment I've heard in a long time.What kind of society do we live in if we can't handle having ONE day out of seven where we can't go shopping?! Surely the urge of buying can wait for a day! And if it can't, then it's a different issue..
margokhal margokhal 7 years
I'm torn on this, because it's really just about cultural differences. As an American, I'm used to having things open on Sundays (except Chick-Fil-A...and that's the day that EVERYONE seems to want their chicken!], because, since our workweeks usually start on Monday and a lot of people tend to have to work on weekends like Saturday (my father works at a hospital, where you can't just shut down and take a day off, so he works weekends all the time...people getting sick and hurt all the time, you know), Sunday is the day of "rest"/preparing for next week. For most of us, excluding religious services, that includes doing/finishing homework, laundry, shopping, groceries, preparing meals, because we're working all during the week. We're used to that. It has been said that Americans work way too hard, higher stress levels and all that. So we SHOULD take a day off, like Europeans do. If I was in another country where everything was closed on Sundays, I would make sure to observe their customs, however irritating it might be for me. But I've also heard that European shopping hours are much shorter and include 1 hr + breaks, which seems like a bad economic move. Yes, if you work less you will be less stressed out, but then you don't get traffic and profits that you need to survive (sorry, that's my American way of thinking, b/c it's all really about business). If you're going to be closed for a whole day, that's fine, but at least be open the entirety of normal business hours during the rest of the week!
margokhal margokhal 7 years
I'm torn on this, because it's really just about cultural differences. As an American, I'm used to having things open on Sundays (except Chick-Fil-A...and that's the day that EVERYONE seems to want their chicken!], because, since our workweeks usually start on Monday and a lot of people tend to have to work on weekends like Saturday (my father works at a hospital, where you can't just shut down and take a day off, so he works weekends all the time...people getting sick and hurt all the time, you know), Sunday is the day of "rest"/preparing for next week. For most of us, excluding religious services, that includes doing/finishing homework, laundry, shopping, groceries, preparing meals, because we're working all during the week. We're used to that. It has been said that Americans work way too hard, higher stress levels and all that. So we SHOULD take a day off, like Europeans do. If I was in another country where everything was closed on Sundays, I would make sure to observe their customs, however irritating it might be for me. But I've also heard that European shopping hours are much shorter and include 1 hr + breaks, which seems like a bad economic move. Yes, if you work less you will be less stressed out, but then you don't get traffic and profits that you need to survive (sorry, that's my American way of thinking, b/c it's all really about business). If you're going to be closed for a whole day, that's fine, but at least be open the entirety of normal business hours during the rest of the week!
tinywhale tinywhale 7 years
I live in Nice, France half of the year and in the touristical center district (the old town & port) shops are open on Sundays - but closed on Mondays! Even most of the restaurants or bakeries are closed on Mondays... so I guess it is more or less the same - one day off per week (you just need to know which one).I think it is better for employees (and shop owners) to have one day to rest on a weekly basis. It is more "human"
tinywhale tinywhale 7 years
I live in Nice, France half of the year and in the touristical center district (the old town & port) shops are open on Sundays - but closed on Mondays! Even most of the restaurants or bakeries are closed on Mondays... so I guess it is more or less the same - one day off per week (you just need to know which one). I think it is better for employees (and shop owners) to have one day to rest on a weekly basis. It is more "human"
cg130 cg130 7 years
That would be so exciting!
cg130 cg130 7 years
That would be so exciting!
Asche Asche 7 years
It's not French...it's European. It's ridiculous that eveything is open on a sunday in America
pequeña pequeña 7 years
I live in Spain (Barcelona) and as Katiefrog said, it's the same here. People who work in the business appreciate a day off. At least I know I did when I worked in a boutique, and many off my friends who work in shops are very annoyed if they have to work on Sundays during sales. The shops from the center of the city could benefit from working on Sundays but I don't think the rest of the city would feel that much of a difference if they opened. It can be annoying for tourists but people here are fine with it. It works this way in a lot of European countries.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
I definitely think shopping on Sundays should be allowed. No stores would have to open, so if they think they would only break even, they could remain closed. I don't really see a negative to allowing the stores to be open on Sundays.
AmandaG AmandaG 7 years
This is a bit of a complexed economic problem. To me if you crunch the number's it seems that they will break even. To stay open the companies and shops must pay employees and the cost of running the store for a day. So then you must take into consideration the amount of traffic the retailer will bring in during a Sunday. Will it bring more tourism? Doubtful. So employees who are swimming in debt get another days pay that could be good, but it probably won't filter back into the business economy. It seems to me that it would have little impact on the economic state of France during this world wide recession.
Katiefrog Katiefrog 7 years
It's so inappropriate for someone to feel the need to go completely off topic and take a dig at the President when this discussion has nothing to do with him.I would hate not to be able to go shopping on Sundays, but I think it's great for anyone working in that industry to have that day off. Tough call. I don't know enough about the French economy to really take a side.
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