Thousands visit trade shows in search of last-day bargains
More than 300,000 people flocked to the Convention and Exhibition Centre yesterday to catch the last day of the Hong Kong Mega Showcase and the Asian Games Show.
The Mega Showcase - a fair offering food, electronics and cars - attracted 250,000 visitors yesterday. Food exhibitors said business was good, but other exhibitors were less upbeat about the array of goods on sale, saying they were 'too different'.
Organiser Hongkong-Asia Exhibition (Holdings) estimated that some 870,000 people visited the four-day fair, 19 per cent up on last year. Each visitor spent an average of HK$900. A spokeswoman put the larger crowds down to a bigger and better show than last year.
At the Asian Games Show, some 70,000 gaming buffs turned up for its last day, bringing the total number of visitors to about 400,000 during its four-day run, 14 per cent higher than last year.
In the Mega Showcase food hall, business was roaring, with customers jostling for goods at prices 'similar to those in the shops', according to one customer, a Mrs Wong. 'But since I'm here, I've spent about HK$1,000,' she said.
A Ms Lam, who was in charge of a booth run by Wing Wah Bakery, said: 'Preserved sausages are the most popular food. So many people have bought them that they account for more than half of all our sales.'
At a stall run by Sun Wah Japanese Food, it was equally busy, with customers struggling to get their hands on bargains in the final hours of the fair.
However, in the other hall where electronics and cars were on sale, exhibitors had more than enough time to chat and mingle.
Leung Wing-kin, a sales representative for Chinese computer giant Lenovo, said: 'I'm not happy with sales. I think too many things have been thrown together here... Business is about 20 per cent lower than expected.'
Down the road in Causeway Bay, the Hong Kong Brands and Products Expo was also pulling in the punters. However, a Mega Showcase spokeswoman said the fair 'was not affected because it targets everyone, while the expo attracts bargain hunters'.
By last night, more than 88,000 people had visited the expo, which runs until January 4.
A spokesman for the expo's organiser, the Chinese Manufacturers' Association of Hong Kong, said the overlap between the Mega Showcase's food festival and the expo should not really affect the number of visitors in Causeway Bay.
'The food festival is just about food, but we have other products. The nature of the expo is a little different,' he said.
Shop, shop, shop
The number of people who descended on Wan Chai to attend the four-day Hong Kong Mega Showcase is estimated to have been about: 870,000