Most Hungarian retailers to open on Sundays as of May 8

Retail

Image by LaMography

After the Hungarian government scrapped the Sunday closings law that prevented retailers from opening on Sundays, the majority of retailers present in Hungary announced that they would open from May 8, while some retailers already opened for business this past Sunday, according to reports.

(Photo: LaMography)

Food retailers such as Penny Market and Tesco opened most of their stores on Sunday, operating with staff that volunteered for the shift, as employers are legally bound to inform employees about changes in opening hours eight days prior to their shifts, according to reports. Tesco and Penny Market paid 200% the regular wage to employees working this past Sunday, according to online daily origo.hu. Tesco told the daily that customers were happy to have the extra shopping day. 

German chain Aldi also opened its stores this Sunday and offered coupons to customers that spent over HUF 5,000, according to reports. German retailer Lidl only opened two of its stores this past Sunday, according to the company’s website, but announced today to open all its stores at the end of the week.

Retailer Spar announced that it would gradually open all its stores, and already opened some of its outlets this Sunday, while French chain Auchan opened the majority of its Hungarian stores, according to reports.

Sports equipment retailer Hervis’ opened a handful of its stores this past Sunday, and the chainʼs remaining stores will be opened this coming Sunday. Sports equipment retailer Decathlon wrote on its website that it would open on May 8 for the first time since the legislation was put in place and asked customers to vote on preferred opening hours through its website.

Electronics equipment retailer Media Markt said it would negotiate the terms with employees so that it could provide optimal service during Sunday openings, and once negotiations are complete all its store could be opened as early as this Sunday.

D.I.Y. retailer Parktiker announced that it would open on May 8 for the first time this year, while furniture retailer IKEA announced that it would open all its stores from May 22 to enable its employees time to prepare for the revised hours of operation.

Following legislation passed by the Hungarian government at the end of 2014, the Sunday closings law restricting retailers from opening on Sundays came into effect on March 15, 2015. As the measure has been widely criticized and prompted the first stages of a referendum to kill the legislation, the government decided to pass an amendment in an expedited procedure last week that would allow retailers to resume Sunday opening hours.

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