Fewer shoppers turn out for Black Friday sales at SF's Union Square

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Consumers have been conditioned to think of Black Friday as a day to shop, but the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc on normal operations, causing retailers to execute Friday’s sales with COVID-19 precautions.

Fewer shoppers were out in San Francisco’s Union Square compared to a typical Thanksgiving week. Some shops, like Barneys, are boarded up. But it did not stop some eager shoppers from flexing their wallets and checking out the scene.

“And to see some of the Christmas sights,” shopper Andrea told KCBS Radio. “We’re from the East Bay, so we came to do that.”

Lauren didn't mind fewer people.

“Definitely a lot less crowded than it has been in past years, but it’s kind of a good thing,” she said. “You definitely feel safer walking around with everything going on.”

Shops are limited to 25 percent capacity, so shoppers expected lines to move slowly. Stores even added circles to the floor to mark out six feet of social distancing.

“As long as you have time management and you dedicate the whole day to shopping in-person, I think you’ll be fine,” shopper Emma said.

She came to check out a variety of products, but plans to shop online. She said her purchases will include clothing because "the sales are really good this year.”

“When the stores did shut down, a lot of the brands weren’t able to sell a lot of clothes so they’re super discounted,” Emma added.

In-store and curbside pick up options were also visible at Macy's.

Two kids look into the now-virtual puppy window at Macy's in San Francisco's Union Square
Two kids look into the now-virtual puppy window at Macy's in San Francisco's Union Square Photo credit Margie Shafer / KCBS Radio