It meant retailers were enjoying brisk trading on the penultimate Saturday before Christmas Day.
Shoppers were out in force as some of the most famous stores offered general reductions of up to 50% and cut prices by up to 75% on selected gifts.
Debenhams, House of Fraser, Boots, and H&M were all reported to be offering huge discounts in an attempt to attract customers over the festive period.
The number of visitors to Aberdeen's Union Square shopping centre rose 9% on last year.
Between December 1 and Christmas Day, Union Square said it expects to sell more than 8,200 party dresses and 395 litres of nail polish - enough to paint more than 150 Stagecoach buses.
At Glasgow's Silverburn shopping centre the PS4 games console is proving to be the sell-out Christmas gift but shelves are also being cleared of men's clothing, nightwear and gadgets.
The last week (Saturday to Thursday) has seen a 5% increase in footfall compared with the same period in 2012.
Silverburn manager David Pierotti said: "We're seeing menswear, sleepwear, gadgets and home gifts as the top sellers.
"The PS4 has predictably been one of the year's sell-out gifts. Our Game store got a delivery yesterday morning and they had flown out the door by 11am.
"For kids, our retailers are telling us that Furby, Monopoly Empire, V Tech InnoTab, Chill Factor Squeeze Cup and Dr McStuffins goods are proving popular.
"Jewellers are also very busy - I expect lots of proposals to be happening this Christmas."
Tom Nathan, general manager at Brent Cross shopping centre in north London, said people were leaving it later than ever to pick up presents for friends and family.
"Christmas really started from Black Friday which has become a far bigger phenomenon than previous years," he said.
"People are leaving it later and later because retailers have better ranges available.
"The general view customers take is that if I want to buy something, I can have it."
Mr Nathan said it was too early to be "categorical" that the country's improving economy was having an effect on consumer spending in the run up to Christmas.
"It's definitely looking more positive," he added.
Thousands of shoppers descended on the Liverpool ONE complex in the city centre, which has already smashed its own records in the run up to Christmas.
Last weekend it recorded the busiest retail day since it opened in 2008, with sales up 9% on the same Saturday in 2012.
Estate director Chris Bliss said: "This has been a great year for Liverpool ONE and the significant increase in footfall is very promising as we move towards Christmas.
"In December last year we saw more than 3.5 million visitors to Liverpool ONE and we're expecting this year to be just as strong."
Shops and restaurants at the giant Trafford Centre on the outskirts of Manchester have also been reporting increased sales.
General manager Richard Paxton said: "Some of our retailers are offering pre-Christmas deals, in a bid to attract customers to their stores. Savvy shoppers are arriving early on Saturday mornings, or staying later into the evening, for uninterrupted Christmas shopping with the chance of some great bargains."
Bluewater shopping centre in Kent said footfall on Saturday was up 15% on the previous weekend, with more shoppers hitting the stores today compared with the same date last year.
A spokeswoman said: "Factors driving our strong performance are the breadth and quality of our shops and restaurants, promotions available in store, and the wider experience that Bluewater provides for Christmas shopping.
"Consumers are visiting and spending and also making a day of their visit to Bluewater."
At the Parc Tawe retail park in Swansea, a spokesman said: "We have been overflowing with shoppers. It is very hard to put a number on but it is a very busy time."
He added: "Christmas shoppers seem to be out in force and we are expecting it to be very busy over the weekend."