IT'S a nightmare before Christmas for shoppers experiencing traffic hell queuing for hours at gridlocked shopping centre carparks.
At Britain's fourth largest shopping centre at Bluewater in Kent, motorists were hemmed in the chaos for up to six hours as shoppers raced to fit in last minute present buying.
Been trying to get out of bluewater carpark for 2 hours - only moved 20 metres. pic.twitter.com/sqwoi0jtN6— Chris Clarke (@theclarkemaster) December 21, 2015
The Daily Mail reported motorists were in tears behind their wheels as roads in and out of the huge mall ground to a halt.
Some frustrated shoppers added to the chaos by abandoning vehicles and returning to the mall while others vented on social media.
Across the Tasman shoppers have faced a similar nightmare stuck in three-hour traffic jams to get of the Castle Towers car park in Sydney's northwest.
Drivers have described chaotic scenes trying to get out of the popular mall's multi-level carpark.
Castle Towers management called in local police to help ease congestion at the Castle Hill complex, with officers at almost every car park guiding traffic through busy intersections.
Police at the Hills Local Area Command warned customers of extensive delays for patrons leaving the shopping centre.
"Some members of the public have had to wait up to an 1.5 hours before they could leave ... due to large numbers of shoppers and cars, extensive delays will continue," the local area command posted on Facebook.
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