Convenience Stores See Rise in Spending
Total spending in convenience stores rose by 3.2% during the week of May 3 versus the same period of the previous year. While the number of trips has fallen, spending per transaction has increased. In states that have lifted restrictions the number of trips has increased along with spending on non alcoholic beverages, candy and salty snacks. Lower demand for fuel has caused gas prices to remain low however as states open up and drivers return to the roads demand may increase. Some convenience store operators have reported difficulty keeping in demand products like household cleaners and paper products in stock.
One reason for the increase in spending is that many customers are trying to avoid busy supermarkets and are less inclined to shop around and risk exposure to the virus. As a result, some consumers have decided that stocking up on pantry staples and hygiene products in their local convenience stores is a safe option. Some convenience stores like Family Express have introduced new safety precautions like installing translucent tissue dispensers so customers can avoid touching surfaces such as door handles, gas pumps, coffee machines and PIN pads directly to prevent the spread of germs in the store.
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