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From lockdown lows to High Street highs – a return to shopping at last?

Coronavirus/COVID19 has hit nearly every sector. And hit it hard. An already struggling High Street has been taking a battering and the move to returning to shopping will be a slow and painful one.

I asked my Facebook fans whether they would be returning to the shops anytime soon and this was their response:

yes 8.3% No 66.7% I

Generally, the people who responded didn’t feel as though they wanted to return. Many felt that they had learnt that they do not need to buy so much “stuff”.

For example:


It appears that the pandemic has caused people to shop more locally and that even if things cost more then they will continue to shop locally. For example:

A lot of people have moved to more online shopping and say that they will continue to do this and shop local. For example:

Some others have seen it as an opportunity for getting a few bargains:

However, for everyone except NHS workers going to some stores, there were no bargains to be had, as Andrew told me when I asked if he had got anything!

As well as people changing their shopping habits, others just don’t feel safe shopping. They say that this is due to people not sticking to guidelines now.

For example:

Others hope that people will return to shopping to support the economy. For example:

Many stores remained closed last week (15-21 June), including those that will never reopen unless a buyer can be found for them, as they go into administration.

Although there were long queues for many places, such as Primark, car parks were far from full, suggesting that people were still staying local. In other parts of Europe where retail has slowly returned it has been reported that people are spending more but not nearly enough to cover the losses incurred by retailers during the lockdown period.

As lockdown measures are eased it is likely that consumers will start to adapt. After all, if there is no vaccine for COVID-19 then we will have to learn to adapt to living with the virus threat and that includes shopping. We have to hope that stores will introduce and keep their risk assessments and protection measures under constant review.

If you are going shopping make sure you know your rights if things go wrong:

Posts which will help with various scenarios:

Don’t get tied in knots over wedding cancellation some venues are not fully refunding couples, charging them fees, not providing a like-for-like alternative next year etc. Here’s what to do about it!

Wedding venues and insurance getting refunds


Coronavirus and travel – who’s taking advantage? outlines the law and what the different relevant agencies are saying/doing about travel companies and airlines and refunds.

Travel in the time of Coronavirus – Your rights explained  outlines what your rights are and how to assert them regarding holidays and flights in this country and abroad.

Coronavirus related cancelled and postponed events your rights outlines your rights and how to assert them when events in this country or abroad are cancelled.

Coronavirus - how to ensure you gain redress when a venue cancels


Online shopping – know your rights during the pandemic explains your rights and how to assert them when things go wrong with an online shop.

COVID-19 scams – How to stay safe a guest post by Paul Newton about current COVID-19 related scams.

Further help with getting redress

Top 20 Tips How to Complain! Use these tips when you complain to be effective! is a site which gives you the contact details for CEOs. The CEO may not respond personally but it does get the matter escalated and you should get a response from one of the executive team.

Cover of How to Complain updated 2019 large cow logo


For more advice, tips and templates for complaining GET THE BOOK! How To Complain: The ESSENTIAL Consumer Guide to Getting REFUNDS, Redress and RESULTS!




By Helen Dewdney, The Complaining Cow

Consultant | Author | Speaker | Blogger | Presenter | Journalist
Helping to make, prevent and deal with complaints

2 replies on “From lockdown lows to High Street highs – a return to shopping at last?”

Just a quick note to say THANK YOU. Your advice was quoted in a paper that my mother in law reads re getting refunds from Expedia. Expedia were hanging on to over £4000 of flight costs that were cancelled by the airline my family were due to travel with on April 5th. I spent hours hanging on their support phone line, got no joy from their robot chat bot, and there was no contact email on their website at all. When I did get to speak to someone, they fobbed me off, refused to refund etc. After seeing the article that quoted your advice, I tracked down a senior exec based in the states, sent them a screen shot of my small claims court submission (before submitting and paying for it), demanded redress within 7 days and 48 hours later I had an email promising a full refund within 30 days. Thats a massive relief, thank you. (If they don’t pay up, I’ll be back for more advice!) Jim in York. :o)

Thank you for coming over to say that, it is appreciated. Most people never say thank you when they are directly given the advice. Please do share anything you find useful on here on social media and follow me too! Oh and you may like the books! Check out the reviews!

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