Souvenir items are in demand at the Vatican City, ahead of’s beatification.
From religious items like rosaries, books, or calendars to specialty items like mugs, shirts and frames bearing the image of the late pontiff, devotees and tourists want something to remind them of the special occasion.
With the mad rush for these items, vendors say, apart from the spiritual benefits from the Pope's beatification, the event is also good for business.
“Ang mabili ngayon ay iyong rosary na mabango na may tatak ng beatification ni Pope John Paul,” said Michelle Garcia Manato.
With the expected surge of tourists, tour agencies say, the event is also a boost to tourism and the hotel industry.
“I think it helps the tourism in Italy because people loved the Pope and the tourists want to spend most of their money that will help the city’s resources," said Daniela Russo, owner of When In Rome Tours Travel Agency.
Hotels are likewise fully booked, and bars and restaurants never run out of customers.
“The great majority of people staying in the hotel are journalists, and April and May is also considered as high season in Rome," said Andrea Avitabile, receptionist of Hotel S. Anna.
Authorities assure the public security is in place at the Saint Peter's Square for the much-anticipated world event.