10% Shopping On Wed, Liquor Sales On Sunday

November 8, 2013

The Government announced in this morning’s [Nov 8] Throne Speech that MarketPlace, Supermart and Lindo’s will increase their Wednesday discount to 10%, and also said that Government will amend the Liquor Licence Act to allow liquor to be sold on Sundays.


Speaking on the grocery discount, the Throne Speech said: “The challenge for Government will be to spread the spirit of shared sacrifice to all stakeholder groups, particularly those who can help relieve people’s hardships.

“To that end, and in keeping with a promise made in negotiations with the BTUC, the Government initiated discussions on the cost of food and electricity.

“As a result, The MarketPlace, Supermart and Lindo’s will expand food cost relief by introducing 10% discounted shopping on Wednesdays for one year with effect from 1 December 2013.”

On the topic of selling liquor on Sundays, the Throne Speech said: “The prohibition of alcohol sales by retail outlets on Sundays has been a feature of Bermudian society for a long time. However, times have changed. Locals and tourists alike wish to be able to purchase beer, wines and spirits on a Sunday.

“Accordingly, Government will amend the Liquor Licence Act 1974 to allow for the purchase of wine and spirits on Sundays from retail outlets that are permitted to operate in accordance with the Public Holidays Act 1947.”

You can view our live coverage of the Throne Speech here, and all our coverage of the Throne Speech here.

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Comments (113)

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  1. San George says:

    Well done OBA – we need more deals like this to stimulate the economy.

  2. smith says:

    At last – now I slip out to the store on a Sunday to grab a bottle of wine or two when unexpected guests come to dinner.

  3. lmao says:

    oh how lovely!

  4. LL Cool J says:

    Times are changing in Bermy…liquor on Sundays. Tourist will love that. 10% off groceries I’m feeling that. Every Littlebit counts.

    • Fruity says:

      I agree! But the question is how high will they mark up for this discount?? Gracious for this proposal but real curious for the store increases for that day; as they hike up the prices each Wednesday which truly defeats purpose of discount.

      • Hmmm says:

        Are you acusing MarketPlace, Supermart and Lindo’s of marking up prices on Wednesday to take advantage of customers?

        • Sandy Bottom says:

          He seems to be saying that. Absolutely ridiculous isn’t it. This is the best the PLP Think Tank can come up with.

          • media says:

            Anything to discredit it. Ends up sounding hollow though. In reality most people will be happy.

      • Betty Trump says:

        Great observation @Fruity, this is my real concern as well. How high will they mark up and than fool folks and call it a discount. I just hope this will not be the case. But thanks for your critical insight in regards to such possible situation. Also how much of the 10% really would make a difference to folks whom are suffering big time? Not sure it is a great amount, after all nothing was done to impact the cost of the huge BELCO bills. I think you have made a real important point.

  5. Kangoocar says:

    Congrats OBA, it is refreshing change to have a government who actually is helping ALL Bermudians, another promise made and another promise done!!!

  6. Kangoocar says:

    Congrats OBA, it is refreshing change to have a government who actually is helping ALL Bermudians, another promise made and another promise delivered!!!

    • Mervin Dickinson says:

      If the OBA want to make an impression, negotiate with the banks. Lower interest rates on mortgages and higher rates on savings. I’ll be happy with 1%.

      • Sandy Bottom says:

        Interest rates on mortgages are the lowest they’ve been in decades.

      • Ignorance is not bliss says:

        Actually I would prefer a higher interest rate on monies with the Banks. I worked hard, lived frugally and saved some money for my old age and lower borrowing rates will further reduce the pittance in interest that I now receive.

        I am appreciative of 10% grocery discount for 12 months.

      • Betty Trump says:

        Thanks Mr. Dickinson, that would also have been a great idea.

  7. Kathy says:

    I am glad they will be amending the sale of liquor to include Sundays. Those of you who chose not to buy liquor on a Sunday, JUST DON’T BUY IT.

    • Signofthetimes says:

      Kathy that goes without saying!?!?

      • Just One says:

        You would think that goes without saying, but there are still some people that like to force their beliefs on others. I guess some people will always want to tell others what to do, and some people will always rely on others to tell them what to do. I think most of us are somewhere in between though; able to think for ourselves!

        Some Sundays I drink, some I don’t! If I don’t have any liquor after Saturday night, it’s nice to know that I will soon have the option to get some before Monday, without having to go to a bar/restaurant ;-)

  8. DarkSideofTheMoon says:

    I feel a little more confident in the OBA government. Won’t say I am now a fan, but this and the other initiatives are spot on.

  9. Concerned says:

    Thanks OBA – hoping BELCO is next – charges added on to the bill is ridiculous – must be of concern to our senior citizens who are struggling

  10. Fruity says:

    I LIKE THIS ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Joonya says:

    Cant wait to hear Betty dump her negative anti-Bermudian spin on this..

  12. markus says:

    Liquor sales on Sunday? I’ll drink to that

  13. Allan says:

    I will ask that Rubis and Tigermarts join the bandwagon of giving discounts too. The premier can start with his shops and BIU too!

  14. VJ says:

    Glad to hear that liquor can be purchased in stores on Sundays. I always thought this was a silly law since you could buy it in a bar or restaurant, but not a store.

    Finally common sense prevails!

  15. Overton Window says:

    Mostly good yes… but what is a ten % decrease on wednesdays worth if they just go ahead and raise prices across the board that 10% will equal out to about (the previous) 5% over the next few months as inflation and our doomed dollar (pegged to the US$.) continues to deteriorate/devalue.They will sacrifice their bottom line? Don’t be a fool. – good gesture though – goodwill goes a bit further than one might imagine it seems…

  16. yesman says:

    I’ll give it to the OBA on this one. Good Job!

  17. frank says:

    don’t get all excited about market place ,lindo,s and supermarket,s 10% discount on Wednesday.the next step they will be open all day on sunday
    this government is destroying all are morals give them rum 24/7 let them stay drunk and they want see what we are doing

    • Kangoocar says:

      Stop your nonsense, the church goers who were all up in arms about Sunday openings years ago, are the first ones in these grocery stores after church!!! Under your claim the would be able to go before church as well, isn’t that good????

    • Sandy Bottom says:

      You don’t want the 10% off your groceries then? Because it “destroys are morals”?

    • Sara says:

      Does it really make sense that it is immoral to buy/drink on Sunday but okay the rest of the days? This is not a morality issue you are speaking of, it is a religious issue to which governments do not belong.

    • wtf says:

      you sir……….. are a closed minded a******

  18. Independent says:

    This is a start, but this is not what I would call sacrife from the business side. I don’t know if people are paying attention, however they will offer you 10% off on Wednesday (10% off on inflated prices), then will be making a ton off the alchol sales on Sunday. Personally, 10% to someone who is broke aint much, but this is a win win for the grocery stores.

    Bermudians act crazy when they are able to get alcohol 5 days a week. I wonder the impact when they are able to get it 6 days a week. lol

    • Sandy Bottom says:

      Tell you what. Why doesn’t the PLP do something useful and get the BIU to open a grocery store where it charges 10% less than everywhere else EVERY DAY? Show us all how it’s done.

      • Independent says:

        How about you tell me nothing. Your an OBA supporter (you and kangoocar) who believes and defends anything they do, so your opinion does not matter to me.

        You two and a few others are what Betty is to the PLP. lol

        • Sandy Bottom says:

          Have you worked out how many days are in a week yet?

        • Ringmaster says:

          Your argument is illogical. If liquor sales on Sunday offset the 10% discount on Wednesday you can buy liquor 6 days a week now (why do you say 5?), so why would buying it Sunday mean the shops make more money? At least the OBA is trying. What did the PLP do in 14 years to help Bermudians cut the cost of shopping?

    • Family Man says:

      Who knows … maybe buying that beer on Sunday will help Bermudians with their math.

      Even in Bermuda, there are 7 days a week.

      • Independent says:

        You are right lol. I am glad you pointed that out to me, my bad.

        Still does not speak to the point I was making. Do you care to speak on the topic?

        • Family Man says:

          You seem to have such a poor opinion of Bermudians, saying they “act crazy” because they can buy alcohol five days a week and implying they will be even crazier if they can buy alcohol on Sunday. I think your hypotheses is bizarre. I have a much higher opinion of Bermudians.

          In fact I would suggest that government remove all restrictions on business hours. Government is not in the liquor business, or grocery business, or retail business. Let each business decide what hours they want to open. In fact if they decide to open seven days a week they will have to employ more staff – instant job creation.

        • Steve says:

          dumb a**

    • Bermy says:

      There is 7 days in a week lol

  19. Sigh says:


    • media says:

      Based on what I heard in a News report a few weeks ago, lower rates are not going to materialise with BELCO. What they are working on is a way to spread out the payments over the year. So a customer would pay an equal ammount every month as opposed to a peak in ther summer months. It involves complexed software and is being developed. Not a savings but no nasty surprises from Aircon use in August etc. and therfore easier to manage your household budgeting.

      Although most find it hard to believe BELCO are not doing well finacially as less electricity is being used in Bermuda with less people here. They actually made more money from other business than electicity last year. So don’t expect a decrease in rates.

      • Independent says:


        The mother company to belco has been buying up property for the last few years, so I can only assume business can’t be too bad.

        With regard to Belco, they have the monopoly, so you mean to tell me they are struggling?

      • Whistling Frog says:

        Belco are in the green every quarter…

        • v!nce says:

          Seriously though… imagine if the main energy supplier in Bermuda was in the red every quarter?
          What would you do without BELCO?

  20. media says:

    This is exactly what I imagined last night when I heard that there was going to be help with food prices in the Throne Speech. It is a practical and easy way of doing it. 10% is defintely better that 5%, so who can complain. Well from some of the above comments I suppose some will always find something to complain about. To those that think the grocery stores are marking up too much, you have no idea of the cost overheads involved in the business in Bermuda. I say thanks to all Grocery Stores and the OBA who have shown that they truely want to help with a shared sacrifice in these difficuly times. Actions speak louder than words. The PLP must be green! with envy seeing that they were never able to achieve anything remotely similar.

    • Independent says:

      @ Media,

      I guess the grocery business must be real hard, considering this businesses have been in place for how many years?

      • Family Man says:

        It was too hard for the BIU to figure out. Their Co-op went out of business owing creditors thousands of dollars.

  21. jt says:

    I like these two so much I think they should be combined – How’s about 10% off liquor on Sundays?!

  22. swing voter says:

    10% is better than nothing….I could imagine the arm wrenching that went on to get this….something like, ‘do you want to see a change in administration in 5 years?’

    • jt says:

      I would think that is about the only point needed for anyone with a triple digit IQ.

  23. raptor says:

    This seems like a win-win-win. Those who need to save money on groceries can get 10% off their food essentials. Those who can afford to buy beer and wine on the weekends will be able to buy it more often, and the grocery stores will benefit financially overall.

  24. terry says:

    This will not affect Butterfield&Valis et al.
    They will still make millions along with the properties they supply.
    Guess most can’t read between lines.

    • Sandy Bottom says:

      But consumers pay 10% less for their groceries.,

      That’s something the PLP never managed to do.

    • Redman says:

      @ terry,

      So why should it affect them? it sounds like you would like to see these importers gone. Last I checked the aim of being in business is to make money. Maybe the importers should just fire all their staff, shut down operations and hand you the keys. Have you taken the time to consider why things cost what they do locally? I doubt it.

      You could start by telling the overseas food manufactures etc to charge less for their goods. Don’t forget to tell the other local vendors & suppliers that impact on your operating costs the same thing. The shippers, insurers, truckers, Belco, painters, mechanics, plumbers, electricians, Rubis, Esso… Then get the Govt to set duty rates even lower, reduce land, payroll tax & social insurance contributions … I could go on. To top it all off you could make your mark up so small that you wont have to make millions and feel guilty, presto problem solved.

      Besides if it is so profitable why won’t you and more of the blinkered whiners go into business doing the same thing? With your lower prices you would force them to lower their prices and or put them out of business as everyone would buy from you. You could then take over their operations and hire more out of work Bermudians. Pay them tons of $$$$ and be able to donate millions to charities as well, win win right? Be careful though as you could become wealthy and that is obviously a bad thing here in Bermie. SH

      Simply put overheads here are high,it comes with the territory. Profit for these businesses will be based more on the volume of goods sold as if goods are judged to be overly expensive then you as a consumer can leave them sitting on the shelf or import your own, I do.

  25. Johnny Boy says:

    Can independent liquor stores now open and sell on a Sunday or just grocery stores,,,

  26. ella says:

    YEA! Good job and thank you OBA!!

  27. tricks are for kids.... says:

    I do see the point that some are making…Whilst this (10%) is a good gesture will it REALLY be 10% off……Having previous experience I can tell you that it is a FACT that things will be marked UP to compensate for the 10% “loss” …so while it may LOOK good in on paper………….

  28. ClearView says:

    I’m sure Marketplace stipulated that they’ll give an extra 5% on condition that they allow Sunday liquor sales.

    • media says:

      Not according to the Premier when asked the question after the Throne Speech. That was not a condition. He said all we owed the Grocery Stores for the extra discount was a “Thank you”.

  29. Toodle-oo says:

    Big f’n deal.
    Whilst 10% is preferable to 5% , let’s say that one’s weekly grocery bill is $210 not including liquor or , heaven forbid , smokes , etc.

    You ONLY ever shop on Wednesdays and now your savings goes up from $10.50 to $21.00 a week.
    That’s $84 a month !

    In the meantime your landlord is extorting hundreds or thousands out of you (depending on your accommodations ) every single month on a place that is not/no longer worth it. And land taxes have not gone down accordingly either .

    Before we get all starry eyed let’s also not forget that this 10% offer is valid for one year only.

    There’s a whole lot of ‘dial resetting’ that has to be done.

    • media says:

      I guess some people will never be grateful. Every little bit helps someone who is struggling financially. Fancy that, the Party that is characterized as the uncaring Party actually doing something to help the average struggling Bermudian. Actions speak louder than words.Thanks OBA for caring enough to do something tangible and make a difference, not just pander.

      • Toodle-oo says:

        As someone who paid the price and lost their job 2 years ago I appreciate and am grateful for all efforts to keep costs down . Did you not notice the bit about 10% being preferable to 5% ?

        I’m simply attempting to put things into perspective by pointing out where the very greatest cost of living is to about 60% of the island’s residents .

  30. JusMyOpinion says:

    I’m definitely not an OBA fan. But Thank You OBA for that deal. Even if the stores mark up their prices it’s NOT the OBA’s fault. At least the OBA tried. Look at it this way. Now we will really get 5% off on Wed if they do mark up the prices. And as for Sunday Liquor Sales. We are all adults and if one wishes to purchase the legal poison on a Sunday so be it.

  31. The Dark Knight Returns says:

    I am in agreement with this however I feel that Government workers should get further relief as they have had their pay cut to assist Government in saving funds.

    • media says:

      While that pay cut is a good start, it is just that. More will have to be cut in the coming years to make any real diffence in our siuation. Just wait and see. It is not going to be popular. Bitter medicine in fact. 20%….

      • Toodle-oo says:

        Please note media that I’m in 100% agreement with you and not giving you a thumbs down .

        The 4.6% cut they had ($4.60 on every $100 for those math challenged) is nothing .

        Ask any of us how much of a cut we’d have willingly taken to remain employed.

        • media says:

          I have taken note. We can agree on something! I have taken a big hit salary wise over the past 2 years. I have felt it.

    • jt says:

      Civil servants are primarily saving themselves with the pay decreases. I hope they are smart enough to know that – I think they are.

      • jahbless says:

        5 percent is nothing to the civil service. They should have had a stagger increase. If your making 2500 a week and im making 800 my 5 percent hurts more!

  32. Victor says:

    Of course if you raise your prices by 10%, it is very easy to give 10% (just mentioning it, not saying that necessarily will happen but advise monitoring situation). Now, how come no mention of permitting fresh milk imports? Half of what DUnkleys Dairy pass off as milk is reconstituted stuff. In particular, it is almost impossible to get your hands on fresh 2%, clearly very limited production and it sells fast – a national outrage – where’s Bean when you need him?

  33. fidel says:

    now bring on the casinos !!!!!

  34. Alvin Williams says:

    A day late a dollar short; but the real effort to lower food prices in Bermuda more than for one day lies in the peoples hands.
    If only we stop filling our shopping cards up to the brim especially before a one day holiday; than we would let the supper markets know we are
    serious about seeing lower food prices. Still the major supermarkets know they will have to do something as more and more whole sale shops open. Kudos from Arnold’s who has led the charge for lower food prices by having a 10% shopping day and even a 15% shopping day a long time before the rest of the supermarkets had been led silently kicking and screaming to this point. We await the dawning of real competition between supermarkets and an end to price collusion which will bring some real relief for the people of Bermuda.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      Alvin , I appreciate what you’re saying , but !

      There aint a much more savvy shopper in Bermuda than I , so let me tell you a little story .

      At the beginning of last month I put together an imaginary shopping list of 20 items and ‘purchased’ them at the mini chain you speak of on their first Tuesday of the month 15% off . The next day I ‘purchased’ them at that mega chain on their regular 5% off Wednesday.
      The imaginary groceries were still cheaper at the mega chain with only 5% off compared to the chain with their 15% off !

      You must be savvy and do the math. Do not be fooled by the hype.

      • logic says:

        There’s a thing call economics of scale. The point is that arnolds is still taking more initiative than the bigger stores, even though their prices were still higher. Thats because Bigger stores can afford to charge less.

        • Toodle-oo says:

          It all depends how you look at it. Are their prices higher because they don’t have the volume buying power of the bigger chain or is there another more nefarious reason ?

          But are they really taking the initiative ? One could argue that as a smaller group their total overheads would be smaller than the large chain.

          Also the 15% off sounds wonderful if you forget for a minute that they’re more expensive than the big chain BUT they only have it once a month versus the others 5% off 4x’s per month.

    • Ringmaster says:

      How about the BIU opening a supermarket and charge 20% less than anyone else? It’s not that simple unless the staff are happy with $10 an hour.

    • media says:

      I went into Arnold’s, a few years ago. I wanted to buy some watermelon. They had half a small watermelon for $25! I couldn’t bring myself to pay that price knowing that I could buy a whole one at Lindo’s for half the price back then. I have never stepped foot in Arnold’s again, that experience left a bad taste in my mouth, if you will excuse the expression. So, I think you are mistaken Alvin. Isn’t it great to see a so called uncaring Government making it more affordable for the average struggling Bermudian to buy food. Maybe they aren’t so evil after all. Maybe they really do care about real Bermudians like me and you. That would seem the case by there actions.

  35. Handbag Basher says:

    I really don’t care about the 10% discount,it makes little difference if any as the prices constantly change each week in all the Supermarkets.

    What I don’t like is the surly service I get from Supermart in St.Georges from a very nasty grey haired woman that works there.
    Her attitude towards customers is disgusting and when a complaint is made to the manager,the Manager laughs in my face.

    Well now.Mr.Gorham,I hope you read this,I have a very large extended family,none of them will be shopping in Supermart, St.Georges.
    you can kiss goodbye to $50,000 approx a year in sales.

    Market Place has similar prices to you,in fact,usually cheaper,the service is pleasant and pretty quick even when long lines at the check out desks.

    • Ringmaster says:

      You have just confirmed the benefit of a free market. You don’t like Supermart but do like Marketplace, so shop at Marketplace.

  36. enough says:

    I think this is a great if small step; as someone above said “every little helps”. The stores involved will make even more profit as 10% discount merely eats into their margins a bit, certainly not selling at a loss and then add on the new revenue stream from Sunday alcohol sales. Win win if you ask me.

  37. Sweaty Tramp says:

    Wow OBA bringing Bermuda into the 21st century.

    PLP losers would have sat and immediately done nothing.

    Then moaned about whites and expats.

    How’s that workin for you now PLP?

  38. Really says:

    Yes OBA all the way finally

  39. sage says:

    Tourists and locals alike also wish to be able to purchase herb legally any day of the week,if we can end prohibition of liquor sales on sundays,sell it from gas stations,have bars at children’s functions and sponsor sports events despite the undeniable destruction caused by alcohol and it’s users(for instance,90%+ of road fatalities),then why is herb illegal in the first place?Surely not health concerns when we have no will to prohibit even cancer sticks.Surely anyone who thinks herb should remain illegal would simultaneously call for tobacco and alcohol to be outlawed immediately.

  40. blackbird says:

    OBA…if you really want to help Bermudians why not cut all duty on fruits and vegetables coming in. That way Bermudians can feed their families real nutritious foods and maybe we will see a decrease in obesity, diabetes and so on. This 10% means nothing to me and my family nobody gives you something for nothing!!!

    • media says:

      Well if you went to the store to shop on a Wednesday and paid cash you would get a 10% discount on your bill. How can you say that means nothing to you? Are you saying that you really don’t need to save any money on your food bill? I don’t understand what you are getting at. If I spend $200 a week now on a Wednesday, I will save another $10 a week. An extra $40 a month. In total $80 a month saved. Not bad. Pays for my phone bill. I like that idea. Why wouldn’t you?

      The Government is in no position to give up any revenue streams, as in giving relief on fruit and vegetables, which is a nice concept I agree. The only exception being no payroll tax for new job hires. They need all the money they can take in and they are still $300 million short…hence the debt build up.

    • Sara says:

      I am not sure why people don’t understand this but their is no money and the government can’t cut its revenue by one more cent. Already running at a deficit, thanks to too much spending by previous government.

    • Sara says:

      Too bad the PLP did not do this when they were rolling in the deep with all that revenue.

  41. Karma says:

    OMG!!! Bermuda entering the 21st century…wow!

  42. SMH says:

    Sorry I really don’t think this is the doing if the OBA. This is part of the negotiations of the Unions. As this is on off the things that was put on the table by all Unions!

  43. Kathy S. says:

    I shop at Market Place on Tuesdays as you get better deals off some grocery items. Eg Tin corn will be 1.09 then Wednesday be 1.29. When I ask them why they have no comment but will say oh give it to her for that price. I’ve called them out on a lot of stuff. So 10% will NOT happen. Lindos I find to be consistent with their prices. Don’t know why Harrington Hundreds doesn’t offer discounts. We shall see though. I’ll compare wednesday discounts on meats and see. That’ll be great I’ll eat lots of lamb lol!

    • Gypsy Mama says:


      I have wondered the same thing for years. Harrington Hundreds stocks some of the healthier food options on the island, yet they have never joined the discount bandwagon.

      I suppose they are doing REALLY well financially.

  44. X mam says:

    Now were getting the picture – took a long time though’

  45. Ima Pimp. says:

    Good job OBA. Now please legalize the oldest profession known to man. PROSTITUTION. Goes well with gaming and alcohol..

    • Just One says:

      Sorry for lol, but that is hilarious!!! Gotta have a sense of humor/humour! Life’s too short!!!

  46. Dark and stormy says:

    The OBA,helping out the small man!

  47. whataboutus says:

    ummmmm weed?

  48. whataboutus says:

    weed or war junkies

  49. Victor says:

    BELCO must surely be next, especially now that a certain senior PLP minister is no longer there to protect the family quarterly dividend cheque.