Dec 17, 2021
Launch of New Retail Modes as a Driving Force for New Post-Epidemic Lifestyles, Sightseeing Activities, and Revitalization of Shopping Districts
Following the containment of the epidemic and increasing vaccination coverage, citizens have adopted brand-new, post-pandemic lifestyle modes in the wake of the gradual lifting of restrictions. Taipei city residents have resumed their consumer lifestyles to satisfy their demand for entertainment. The Taipei City Government has accelerated its efforts to bring the economy back on track through the launch of a series of subsidies and stimulus packages to revitalize economic activity. Local citizens are encouraged to return to Taipei shopping districts and reinvigorate the local economy.
The rapid rise in the number of confirmed cases in mid-May resulted in a rapid cooldown of economic activity. However, as the outbreak was gradually brought under control and vaccination coverage rose, citizens started to return to their offices, restaurants resumed dine-in services, domestic travel restrictions were gradually lifted, and the economy was revived. Industries deeply affected by the epidemic need to make extraordinary efforts to get back on their feet. Therefore, Taipei City Government has taken appropriate steps to provide incentives in different dimensions to stimulate consumption. Relevant measures include Taipei Digital Stimulus Vouchers coupled with various discounts, the organization of an anniversary sale in the Eastern District, and promotion of the annual Taipei Night Market Festival. The ultimate goal is to dispel the dark clouds of the pandemic hanging over the Taipei shopping districts and thereby light up the local economy.
Digital Revitalization, Digital Stimulus Vouchers, and Add-on Incentives for Consumption
As the pandemic is still ravaging the world, the City Government not only focuses on epidemic prevention but also on economic stimuli and incentives as the key to boosting public consumption. Therefore, it has launched a digital revitalization initiative that relies on Taipei Digital Stimulus Vouchers. These vouchers are divided into five categories in line with different industry categories (Room and Board, Eatery, Culture and Arts, Sports, Marketplace). The goal is to encourage consumption in different areas through different types of discounts and thereby inject vitality into the city’s shopping districts.
- Room and Board vouchers: Applicable to reassured lodging in the context of “Bravo Vouchers” accommodation activities.
- Eatery vouchers: Applicable to Taipei City retail stores and food & beverage stores.
- Culture and Arts vouchers: Applicable to stores of art &culture industry.
- Sports vouchers: Applicable to contracted out public sports venues, privately operated sports venues, or related services and products
- Marketplace vouchers: Applicable to public retail markets, vendor assembly areas, and underground mall stores within the jurisdiction of Taipei City Market Administration Office.
The digital stimulus voucher registration platform TAIPEI PASS is open for online registration by all members starting in late September. Five different kinds of vouchers can be redeemed for purchases based on their QR Code. A fully digitized approach has been adopted for these vouchers. The whole process, including the online registration, delivery of e-vouchers, immediate retrieval and redeeming for purchases, can be handled via the TAIPEI PASS App. A two-pronged strategy on a single platform ensures simultaneous benefits in economic stimuli and digital transformation. The goal is to generate significant momentum for stores in Taipei’s shopping districts.
In contrast to revitalization programs implemented by other municipalities and counties in Taiwan, the Taipei Digital Stimulus Voucher Program not only aims to boost the economy but also advance digital transformation. The fact that the vouchers are tied to TAIPEI PASS App is expected to further popularize the App, which will help bridge the digital divide in Taipei City. In the future, it will be possible to provide relevant municipal services via the App and thereby promote the integration of relevant resources and reduce administrative costs.
This voucher program marks the first instance of a joint effort by the Taipei City Government and privately operated stores to revitalize the local economy. This initiative is expected to reach a total of 963,000 citizens. 792,000 individuals, accounting for 82.22% of all participants, will win at least 1 coupon. The program is projected to generate economies of scale in Taipei. With a view to encouraging stores to participate in this revitalization program, the three top-ranked stores in terms of the volume of accepted vouchers in different categories will receive prizes of NT$ 150,000, 100,000, and 50,000 respectively. The ultimate goal is to increase the willingness of citizens to participate in this initiative while offering more incentives to local businesses to join the ranks of supporters. The Taipei Digital Stimulus Voucher Program represents a blueprint for future cooperation between the government and private businesses. The automatic conversion of shops into designated stores is conducive to the formation of enduring partnerships and intensified cooperation between Taipei City Government and shopping districts.
In an attempt to further increase the frequency of economic stimuli in Taipei City, the City Government has combined the voucher program with a shopping activity featuring attractive prizes titled 2021 Taipei Shopping Fever. In contrast to the Taipei Digital Stimulus Voucher Program, this activity relies on add-on incentives for shoppers linked to invoices. Citizens can register on the activity website based on receipts or invoices for purchases of at least NT$ 200 made between October 8, 2021 and February 15, 2022 to gain an opportunity to win an attractive prize. This activity represents another incentive for residents to engage in consumption.
The City Government strives to extend economic activity in Taipei City through the ongoing provision of incentives for public consumption in various dimensions. For instance, the second round of lot drawing for the Digital Stimulus Voucher Add-on Program is scheduled for early 2022. This will signal the start of a new wave of promotional activities.
Special Promotional Offers Rolled out in Cooperation with the Eastern Shopping District in the Context of the Anniversary Sale
With a view to highlighting the unique features of the Eastern Shopping District, the City Government joined hands with this shopping district in the organization of the “Eastern District Anniversary Sale” in mid-November, which was a 12-day promotional activity launched by a unique alliance between SOGO Department Store and more than 150 stores in the district. Over 3,000 prizes were handed out to give residents a more palpable sense of accomplishment when making purchases in the district.
The Eastern Shopping District mainly promotes unique features such as trendy art & cultural elements and nightlife activities to motivate residents to engage in consumption in the Eastern District by relying on the added impetus of the year-end shopping season. Citizens who make purchases of at least NT$ 100 are eligible to receive a prize draw ticket and thereby gain a chance to win prizes ranging from iPhone 13 Pro to a one-day supercar experience. In addition, designated stores offer a larger variety of paper vouchers and discounts in response to the quintuple stimulus voucher policy. For instance, shoppers are eligible to receive 20 NTD, 50 NT, and 100 NTD vouchers for purchases of 200 NTD, 500 NTD, and 1,000 NTD, respectively, and so on. The goal is to harness the bullish market tendencies at year-end to maintain the vibrancy of the Eastern Shopping District.
Taipei Night Market Festival Greeted with Enthusiasm - Digital Payment Methods Raise Food Safety Awareness
A total of 11 night markets (Gongguan, Ningxia, Yansan, Shilin, Guangzhou St., Huaxi St., Bangka, Wuzhou St., Xichang St., Shuangcheng, Nanjichang) have been enlisted to participate in the annual Taipei Night Market Festival, which kicked off in November. To give residents a sense of active participation, the City Government has decided to organize another iteration of the Night Market Star culinary delicacy contest. Another online vote was held to determine the list of the TOP10 vendors for the 2021 Taipei Night Market Culinary Guide. Citizens who cast their vote online earned a chance to win great prizes ranging from iPhone 13, SONY headphones, Switch consoles, to culinary delicacy vouchers. In addition, residents can receive a cashback of NT$ 15 for every single purchase of at least NT$ 50 made with an Easycard (limited to two vouchers per person). This promotional activity serves as an incentive for residents to use mobile payments at Taipei City night markets.
This year’s Taipei City Night Market Festival features a special activity titled “Night Market Stroll with a Smile” linked to the Night Market Food Safety “Smile” Marks issued by the Department of Health, Taipei City Government. Citizens who take pictures of smile marks awarded to vendors and upload them to the 2021 Taipei Food Safety website have an opportunity to win $1000 NTD gift certificates for large retailers and lmited smile stamp pillow. This wide range of incentives serves the purpose of boosting the local economy and consumption and enforcing food safety controls by relying on the joint efforts of residents and vendors. In the long run, these initiatives are highly conducive to raising food safety awareness and dispelling worries of residents regarding the safety of food products.
The global economy is highly volatile and unpredictable. In the face of adverse economic conditions such as soaring consumer prices in the wake of the containment of the epidemic in Taiwan and mounting economic pressure for residents, the City Government is firmly committed to invigorating local shopping districts and economic activities as a key link of its municipal policies, which is evident from the aforementioned stimulus programs and initiatives. During the latest local outbreak of COVID-19, Taipei City had to face and tackle numerous challenges. Industrial and shopping district transformations have already turned into the new normal in the post-epidemic era. The ongoing promotion of digital transformation, on the other hand, is conducive to consolidating Taipei City’s position as a bellwether of Taiwanese economic competitiveness.