it must be tough to do retail business

23 Nov

london 3.47pm 13.1C dry thursday 2017 virgin lounge

the sun is about to set now, but it has been a blue sky sunny day today. i have a free ticket to the food and drink festival in olympia, and i thought i shall just go there to see what it is all about, thinking that if it is boring, i shall get out and into the sunshine outside. 

well, the food festival was part of the home exhibition which took up the major part of the hall, so we were able to access the home exhibition without paying the entrance fee. frankly i dont know why anyone should pay £16 just for the entry. it seems silly, maybe that is why they were giving me free tickets. i met lots of others with these free tickets too…

it is not even that they are giving free meals with those tickets, so what is the advantage of paying for it i wonder. the food stalls were selling food , and very popular they were too, with people queueing to buy the food. though the food does not look very special. but i happen to arrive at 1pm, lunch time, so people were hungry. that might account for them being so popular.  fortunately i ate before i went.

in the main hall, there were all those stalls selling furniture and home stuff. how many people buy home furnishings these days? ah well, they must be making profits, so who am i to say anything about how they do business.

but maybe  a harbinger of the future can be glimpsed in the high st when i passed kensington high st on the bus. a few shops were boarded up…and signs saying the business (it was barclay bank) is reducing its hours at that branch , but they are online 24hrs, whilst one , banana republic, even says we are closing but we are still online. we all know that retail shops are finding huge competition from online websites.

and the recent budget announced yesterday is saying the national living wage is going to rise in april. i am not sure if it is mandatory so that all businesses in london must conform to it or not. i know the minimum wage is compulsory, but the living wage? that is voluntary isn’t it? if it is compulsory, it would be a worrying time if i am an owner of these london businesses.  

The difference between the National Living Wage and the Living Wage

The new National Living Wage is different from the Living Wage, which is an hourly rate of pay and updated annually. The Living Wage is set independently by the Living Wage Foundation and is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK. Employers choose to pay the Living Wage on a voluntary basis. link .

its all damn confusing really… but it looks like the national living wage is compulsory. all the more reason to get rid of your shop with its staff and go online.

  • National Living Wage to rise in April 2018 by 4.4%, from £7.50 an hour to £7.83.
  • link 

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