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Last Minute Holiday Shopping Crowds Compare To Black Friday

BALTIMORE (WJZ) --- If you have any last minute Christmas gifts to buy, Wednesday is the very last day to get that shopping done. Stores will be closing early and crowds are expected to be big.

Rick Ritter spent Wednesday at the White Marsh Mall and has more on last minute shoppers.

It may be Christmas Eve, but it's looking a lot like Black Friday at White Marsh Mall, with a heavy flow of shoppers all day long.

The countdown is on. We're just hours away from Christmas day and a sea of shoppers swarm the White Marsh Mall. Many making a final dash for those last minute gifts.

"Disney store, had to get last minute stocking stuffers," shopper Hope Smith said.

Others, soaking in the holiday scene.

"We're here to enjoy the festivities and kind of just watch the mayhem, all around," Ryan Darmsteadt said.

Doors opened at 8 a.m. Mall officials say it's been a Black Friday type crowd on Christmas Eve.

"Hectic yeah, read crowded," Shawn Redford said.

"They started when we opened the doors and it's remained consistent," Lisa Bisenius said.

Retailers, laying out those last minute deals.

"We do have great opportunities for sales after Christmas, but out shoppers are really buying today," store manager of Boscovs, Les Verhoak said.

Even though Christmas Eve brought a heavy flow of shoppers, officials here expect the crowds to easily double come Friday.

"Friday's traffic will be double what you're seeing now, prob, even more so haha," Bisenius said.

As many hope to cash in big one more time before the year's over.

"Better late than never, absolutely, better late than never," Darmsteadt said.

Statistics show nearly one in every four shoppers waited until the end of the holiday season to finish their shopping this year.

Retailers got an early Christmas gift this past week. Analysts said Saturday and Sunday added up to the biggest two day sales, period, ever, totaling $42-billion.

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