Icelanders are famous for their love of fireworks which they set off on New Year’s Eve. The capital, Reykjavík, is lit up by fireworks as the pyromanic countrymen say goodbye to the old year and welcome the new. This year the price of fireworks will really set their wallets back, as they have doubled in price compared to 2007 because of the depreciation of the ISK.
The volunteer nationwide rescue squads, <i>Landsbjörg<p>, are the biggest vendors in fireworks. They use the profits from the sales to fund their operations through the year.
“The price changes last year were great but then we took them partly on. That meant we gained very little from the sales. This year we are hoping for more balance as we have negotiated lower prices for our imports,” said Kristinn Ólafsson, manager of Landsbjörg to <i>Morgunbladid<p>.
Landsbjörg traditionally sells five different types of family boxes of fireworks, which consist of party bombs, star lights and an assortment of fireworks. Their most expensive box now costs ISK 21,900 (USD 178 / EUR 120) and is called ‘Troll’. The most popular family box is called ´Stuffed’ and now costs ISK 11,900 (USD 97 / EUR 65) which is an 89 percent increase from 2007.
5,000 people work as volunteers for Landsbjörg selling fireworks the last days before New Years Eve, according to Jón Ingi Sigvaldason, marketing manager at Landsbjörg, <i>visir.is<p> reported. Sigvaldason expects good fireworks sales this year. “Our assortment of products has never been better. He encouraged customers to buy their fireworks from Landsbjörg as they were not only buying fireworks but also supporting a good cause. He said their fireworks were good products and that the money was wisely spent by strengthening the volunteer rescue squads.
Some sports clubs, such as KR in Reykjavík, are also traditionally large vendors of fireworks. Their prices have gone up, through the roof and into the sky too. A popular box sold by KR has gone up in price 124 percent although it contains the same items as last year, according to Lúdvík Georgsson at KR fireworks.
The Reykjavík Police Commissioner has issued 60 licenses to firework vendors before this New Year’s Eve.