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Last-minute holiday shoppers take to Rimrock Mall and downtown Billings to purchase gifts

Shopper in Rimrock Mall carries bags
Posted at 2:45 PM, Dec 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-24 16:45:42-05

BILLINGS — It's the season of giving—and the Rimrock Mall in Billings had a busy day on Saturday tending to last-minute Christmas shoppers.

CBS News reports that prices of consumer goods will be up by eight to ten percent this year due to inflation, causing many consumers to hold off on purchasing gifts to pay other bills.

Adobe also published a press release stating online sales of consumer goods will hit $209.7 billion from Nov. 1 to Dec. 31, equating to a 2.5% growth year-over-year.

With the rise of online shopping and customers needing to budget due to inflation, many waited until the last possible second to purchase Christmas gifts.

At Rimrock Mall in Billings on Saturday, consumers were seen waiting in long lines to make purchases.

Chase Watters was purchasing sweatshirts as gifts from a screen-print kiosk at the mall on Saturday.

When asked why he waited to purchase, Watters explained he was just happy to be able to purchase gifts now.

“Not really delays in shipping, just personal things you know. It happens. Getting it done today finally,” Watters said. "It’s Christmas, it’s the gift of giving, you know?"

Others, like Demetrius Brown, had a long list to check off.

“Just doing some last-minute Christmas shopping, you know, the last-minute late timing," Demetrius Brown said on Saturday. "Just getting my personal needs and stuff as well as for the family, the little ones."

Business owners were eager to see what the day would hold.

“Today we’ve had quite a few walkers in the mall and a few stopped by, so we’re looking forward to a good day,” said Brian Brown, the owner of Chalet Market.

The market has a kiosk in the mall, and Brian Brown said their items make for great Christmas gifts.

“This year (our most popular item) seems to be our buffalo, our buffalo is selling really hot this year,” Brian Brown said.

And over in downtown Billings, shoppers were making some crunch-time purchases.

Kenn Patterson explained on Saturday that he was about to head out of town to visit family, and was picking up a few more items before he left.

“We actually live downtown, but we’re getting ready to leave to go to Glendive to see some family and just picking up our last few gift ideas that we had,” Patterson explained. “I think it’s just really cold right now, so I think (other shoppers are) going to start coming down. It looks like they’re already starting to filter down a bit. It should be a good day of shopping downtown."

While holiday shopping might have been put on the back burner this year, Billings residents are grateful to have places like the Rimrock Mall and downtown Billings to shop at.