As the Canadian dollar continues to hover under $.80 US, Washington State retailers who rely on on their northern cousins are finding creative ways to deal with the slump in sales.
Bellis Fair Mall, which has traditionally been a popular spot for Canadians, is no exception.
Throughout the Victoria Day long weekend, many Bellis Fair shops will be accepting the Canadian dollar at par.
Any shop with a Canadian and American on display will be honouring the deal, but in order to get you’ll have to present your Canadian ID at the till.
If you can’t make it down this time, you’ll have other opportunities throughout the year.
The mall is offering the deal for all Canadian holiday weekends in 2016.
Sharing the wealth
Professor of marketing at Simon Fraser University, Lindsay Meredith, says other businesses will benefit as well.
“The whole advantage of discounting the Canadian dollar or trading it at par by the Bellis Fair crowd is that everybody wins off this. The free-riders are out there all over the place. The hotels, the gas stations, the guys selling cheese and bread and dairy products. The guys a little farther south in Bellingham like the Fred Meyer gang. If you can get those Canadians to travel south they will leave more dollars behind than just Bellis Fair.”
Despite that, Meredith calls it a desperate measure because they need Canadian shoppers to keep their volume up.
“Without the Canadian volumes they don’t enjoy the kind of purchasing power in the market place that those stores are able to exercise…It’s very very important that these guys get that big flow of Canadian dollars in there.”
Steady decrease in southbound cross-border traffic since 2013
According to Western Washington University’s Border Policy Research Institute, southbound cross-border travel dropped by 21.5% between 2014 and 2015.
At the same time, the report notes that the number of U.S. residents traveling to Canada in on the upwards trend.
Bellis Fair accepting CAN $ at par the following holidays:
- Victoria Day, Monday, May 23
- Canada Day, Friday, July 1
- Labour Day, Monday, Sept. 5
- Thanksgiving, Monday, Oct. 10
- Remembrance Day, Friday, Nov. 11