January 8, 2014 / Events
“Pronti… Partenza… VIA!” (Roughly “On your marks, get set, go!”)

Start of a marathon? Actually, it’s more of a sprint. Finish line… the cash-register!

Happens every winter. Mobs of giggling adults waiting for the stores to open on that first Saturday of January. By law this marks the beginning of the saldi, the season sales, and by law the sales will go on for exactly six weeks. That first day however is critical, as the choice items go quickly given that discounts can range from 20% to 50% off pre-holiday prices.

You would think that with the holiday season just passed, people would be all shopped out. Given the hoards of shoppers waiting to be the first into the stores however, it is more likely that quite a few people purposely held back from a complete pre-holiday splurge.

Mind you, you will find neither auto-part stores nor framers, household goods or electronic stores offering saldi. Only stores that sell clothing, shoes, linens (and textiles in general), leather goods, fur, and lingerie are allowed to offer saldi. The rationale behind this specificity is tenuous to say the least. Then again what does rationale have anything to do with a mob of giddy adults huddled outside of a store in winter waiting to buy yet one more pair of shoes?


by GB Bernardini

Editor, Italian Notebook

5 Responses to “Saldi”

  1. GB, Good to see the New Year hasn’t dampened your humor.
    Great article and along that note, They must have shoes for men on sale? You know you want to secretly get in that line…. Happy Saldi goes out even to the spectators.

  2. Bob Blesse

    Thanks, GB. It’s good to hear that Italy has the same saldi madness that we do in the U.S. Cheers, Bob

  3. Linda Boccia

    GB I am surprised at you,………women, and many ;men too, can not have enough shoes or in the case of women, purses. While I am not Imeda Marcos, who allegedly had 1000’s of pairs of shoes, I do love shoes in all colors! It’s not Italian not to love shoes because you make the best!!!

  4. Not only do we have ‘Sale Madness’ after Christmas, we also have the dubious honor of Black Friday, originally the Friday after Thanksgiving which is now creeping into Thanksgiving day, itself. Yours sounds much more controlled but all are a bit over the top, these days. I think that it started in the US with January (and August) White Sales (linens, etc.). It just keeps expanding…

  5. Marianna Raccuglia

    Ha Ha! Sounds like New York! Thanks – I needed a good laugh. Happy New Year


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