Shoppers have been swarming shopping malls and markets in the capital to buy their favourite outfits and accessories on Friday, the last weekend before Eid-ul-Fitr.
Shopkeepers are also trying to make the best of it as there are fewer window shoppers and more actual buyers. They are offering fixed prices on items, claiming that the prices are reasonable as they do not want to lose customers.
Buyers, however, expressed disappointment, saying that traders were hawking high prices for products though Ramadan is nearing its end.
Customers prefer local outfits that are comfortable in the current heatwave, according to shopkeepers.
Women are more into buying Kurti-kameez, lehenga, cotton three-piece sets besides western, Indian and Pakistani clothing.
On the other hand, men prefer buying punjabis, shirts and jeans pants for Eid.
Kamran Mahmood, a family shopper who visited showrooms of Gentle Park, Infinity, Lubnan and Fashion Zone at Bashundhara City Shopping Complex, told The Business Post that he was satisfied with the punjabi he bought.
However, jeans, shirts and women’s items seemed a bit pricier to him.
Kamal Hossain, the owner of Fashion Zone at Bashundhara City, expected sales to increase more in the evening.
"Sales have increased today (Friday) than the past few days and punjabi is being sold more," he said.
Like many shoppers, university student Azim has planned to shop from several markets of Dhaka to get the best deals.
"I bought shirts and pants from Bashundhara City. Now I will go to Elephant Road to buy shoes. I started shopping in the morning and will wrap up before Iftar," said Azim.
Tabassum Kanta, a working person and mother of three schoolchildren, came to New Market to shop for herself and her family. She said they had already managed a ride for home at Netrokona, where they planned to spend the Eid vacation. That is why she was in a hurry to finish her shopping on Friday.
"I have no choice but to pay unfairly high prices for my kid's dresses. A set of shirt and pants, which usually costs Tk 1,200, is now being sold at a fixed price of Tk 1,900," said Kanta.
Aminul Islam of Jannat Fashion at New Market was busy handling a group of customers on Friday morning. According to him, product prices are quite reasonable.
"We have been counting losses. So, we have no choice but to ask at least for this much. The Covid-19 pandemic is dragging our business down. The government should allow shops and markets to stay open till midnight," Aminul added.
On the other hand, sellers at Bangabazar, the wholesale market for garments and women’s clothing, are selling more products in retail to curve down their losses caused due to an ongoing nationwide lockdown.
At this market, punjabis are being sold at a price range of Tk 300 to Tk 3,000 per piece.
Children's punjabis cost between Tk 200 to Tk 1,500 and salwars between Tk 200 to Tk 500. Scarves that go along with punjabis are also available for Tk 300.
On the other hand, party frocks for children cost Tk 1,200 to Tk 3,000, lehenga Tk 1,200 to Tk 2,000. Girls’ skirts are being sold at Tk 350 to Tk 1,000 and tops at Tk 200 to Tk 500.
Meanwhile, kids' sets of t-shirt and shorts are being sold there at Tk 500 to Tk 1,200, polo t-shirts at Tk 300 to Tk 600 and shirts at Tk 300 to Tk 600.
According to Delwar Hossain, owner of Tangail Fashion House in Bangabazar, the demand for pure cotton clothes for women is strong as they are comfortable during the heatwave.
SM Masum Billah, a customer at Bangabazar from Rayerbagh, said, "The prices here are lower than the other markets in Dhaka. They ask for a higher price at first. But you'll get a good deal if you're good at bargaining."
Known for a relatively low price range, lower-income people’s favourite shopping destination sidewalk shops were also bustling with crowds on Friday. People were seen buying cosmetics and clothes including lungi, shirt, pants, t-shirt, shoes, punjabi, cap, belt and salwar-kameez along household items.