The Soldes happens twice a year in France and the dates are decided by the prefet( chief of police) of each department after consulting with shop owners. The only product allowed to be sold at reduce price (even below cost) are the ones that have been on sale for more than one Month. The lengh of the soldes is 6 weeks maximum. This is according to the French law of the 30th of December 1906.
The dates are usually the second Wednesday of January for the Soldes d’Hiver (winter sales) and the third Wednesday of June for the Soldes d’été (Summer sales). The summer sale have been changed this year due to Covid.
Those two periods of the year are very popular in France and I know some of my collegues and (my sister) who would take a day off on the special Wednesday to be able to go shopping and get the best bargains!!
However, some shop are being sneaky by producing a lesser quality product for this time of year so able to sell it cheaper. It is still legal as they got the products one Month prior to the date of the Soldes.
But in general, it is a very good time for shopping and being used honestly by shop owners to get ride of their stock before the next period of the year arrives. Eg: selling off all the summer clothes before the winter ones arrive. So don’t miss out!
Picture here is the St Catherine street in Bordeaux, the longest shopping street in Europe shut to cars. A nightmare if you happen to be doing this street with my sister!!
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