Winter sales officially begin on the 15th of January, even though many stores will start making special offers days before. The sale season will last until the 28th of February.

The great fall in sales and reduced interest over the holiday season, despite generous offers of up to 40%, have forced business owners to join in on the sales earlier this year.

The vice president of the Athens Trader Association explained in a radio interview on Vima 99.5, that sales were down 25% over the holiday season. This is reflected in data generated by the Greek Statistics Authority. The Work Cycle Index in Retail, without fuel costs, for the month of October 2012 was down by 16.5% on a yearly basis (17.1% with fuel).

December, which is typically a busy month that can result in up to 50% of trade for certain sectors, was nothing like previous years. The drop in consumption even affected large chains and shopping malls.