Traders prepare for the big rush



WITH only 23 days to go before Christmas, Murwillumbah traders are gearing up for a bumper few weeks as locals start to indulge in their festive-season shopping.

Local traders have been buoyed by a recent Mastercard survey showing that toy shops, clothing and shoe stores in northern NSW can expect up to a 30 per cent increase in trade this Christmas.

But while many store operators are getting into the festive spirit by decorating their premises, the main marketing thrust for the town is being saved till after Christmas.

Murwillumbah and District Chamber of Commerce president Paul Waters said the television advertising campaign Heart of the Tweed, which promotes the town, would resume in January, along with other media marketing.

"We will be mainly focusing on promoting the town and region for tourism and visitors to come here over Christmas," Mr Waters said.

"Individual traders will no doubt market themselves for Christmas with in-house promotions and catalogues but we want to focus on the 100,000-plus visitors to the Gold Coast and Byron Bay over this period to tell them that while they're here they can come and check out Murwillumbah," he said.

Murwillumbah, he said, was now well-placed to draw more tourists to the Tweed hinterland with new cafes and restaurants leading the charge.

"Most of the empty stores have been filled lately and many new businesses have opened up so the town is continuing to grow in prosperity," Mr Waters said.



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