People were out at Toronto stores on Tuesday in search of Boxing Day bargains— and some said shopping on a day known for deals has become more important amid the affordability crisis. 

Despite some crowds and traffic, several shoppers told CBC Toronto that the volume of bargain hunters seems lower than previous years. 

Over at Sherway Gardens mall in Etobicoke, several shoppers said the urge to find discounts was stronger this year due to the affordability crisis. 

“The deals are great,” said shopper Mike Trofimov.. He told CBC Toronto saving money is more important this year than previous years. 

“Unfortunately inflation rates skyrocketed…the only way for regular families to get what they actually need…is to utilize the opportunity,” he said. 

But others weren’t impressed by the discounts offered. Sisters Hilyana and Zoe Botetzayas told CBC Toronto they were hoping for better bargains at stores like Aritizia. 

“Having better deals would benefit everybody,” she said. Zoe said they come every year, and this year is less busy than others. 

Shopper Amber Dailey agreed, but this also means shorter lines. “It’s better for us because we don’t have to stand around too long,” she said. “A lot of people do online shopping.”

Despite seeming less busy, crowds flocking to shopping centres prompted police to issue advisories about traffic. The OPP Highway Safety Division said in a statement Tuesday morning that the Trafalgar Road off-ramp from westbound Highway 401 at the Toronto Premium Outlets is closed. That closure came about an hour after police alerted the public that the ramp was backed up. 

The OPP asked that the public do not park or walk on the shoulder of the highway to gain access to the mall. 

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