LivingTravelShopping in Asia

Shopping in Asia

Shopping in Asia can be a bargain, but only if you know what to expect and how to play. Use these tips to find bargains for a better shopping experience in Asia.

Beware of cheap fakes

From perfumes to handbags to cigarettes, chances are someone in Asia has figured out a way to make a cheap copy and is probably trying to pass it off as “the real deal.” Common sense dictates that the Rolex watch you just bought for $ 25 probably won’t keep working for long.

While spotting obvious fakes, like DVD copies, is easy, some replicas, like branded clothing, are much more difficult to spot.

Keep this in mind when shopping in Asia:

  • You can safely assume that most of the western brand items you find in Asian markets and stores are potential knockoffs.
  • Counterfeits are not only found in street markets; Even the pretty stores in the malls carry their fair share of cheap knockoffs.

Always shop around

Buying that nifty souvenir at the first store you visit almost always creates frustration later when you see the same thing for half the price. Stores in places like China tend to carry many of the same items, sometimes arranged identically to the store next door.

If you can’t get the price you want on something, keep walking; You will likely see the same item in neighboring stores!

Negotiation is not optional.

Although uncomfortable for many Westerners, negotiating prices in Asia is a way of life; Traders love excitement and you must learn to enjoy it. Paying the sale price of any item not only hurts your bank account, but travelers who follow you face inflated prices thanks to those who don’t negotiate. Remember, prices have already gone up because sellers expect smooth haggling.

Haggling prices approach in Asia as a game; smile a lot and have fun while handling a tough bargain. Despite his claims, no trader will lose money or go hungry when he sells you something!

Be courteous while shopping in Asia

Traveling in poor countries can sometimes make you feel like a walking dollar sign as people, some more persistent than others, are constantly trying to take you to their stores or sell you something.

Remember that most are only trying to feed their families or improve their quality of life. Be polite and don’t treat locals like vending machines to buy cheap products to show off at home. Saying a polite “hello” and “thank you” in the local language is very helpful and will inevitably help you get better deals.

Be a responsible buyer

Some of those souvenirs found in Asian markets come from dire sources. Seashells, animal products and items produced with child labor should be avoided so that harmful practices are not perpetuated.

Do not assume that the trinket or wooden elephant purchased in Thailand was made locally; Many souvenirs found throughout Southeast Asia are produced in China. Buy from fair trade stores and directly from local artisans and artisans whenever possible.

Tip: Just because someone sits down with a knife and scatters wood chips on the ground doesn’t mean they carved that wooden trinket!

Other tips for a better experience

Watch your pockets

Crowded tourist markets tend to attract pickpockets who prey on foreigners walking around with lots of cash. Keep your money hidden, tie or close your shopping bags, and separate your funds so you don’t have to pull out a wad of cash when making a transaction.

Don’t believe everything you hear

Unless you are an expert, be wary of claims about the age and authenticity of antiques or unique items found in Asia. Buying gemstones, a very common scam in Southeast Asia, as well as silver and gold jewelry carries a risk. Bringing antiques home is illegal in many Asian countries.

Try on clothes when possible

Although a lot of expensive western brand clothing is made in Asia, labels and logos on clothing do not always guarantee quality. Sometimes factory rejects are bought and sold in department stores.

Clothing flaws are hard to spot unless you try on an item. The size indicated on a tag may simply be wrong, or the shirt sleeves may be different lengths. Factory rejects often end up on the black market and eventually in tourist shops.

Japan reopens its doors: Mexicans will be able to travel without a visa

A novelty for foreign tourists will be the weakness of the local currency, the yen, valued at around 145 per dollar, a level not seen in two decades.

Easter leaves economic spill for 170 thousand million pesos: Concanaco

It exceeds 20% the expectations that were calculated for the period; some tourist sites came to register a hotel occupancy of between 85% and 95%, detailed

This is the largest island in Asia: characteristics and curiosities

We tell you everything about the largest island in Asia: surface area, population, fauna, flora ... A unique place in the world!

José María Liu (Taiwan): "For us, the support of the United States is indispensable...

In this interview with OKDIARIO, the Taiwanese ambassador to Spain, José María Liu, lists each of the threats that his country is receiving from China and gives as an example the intimidating flight of 25 Chinese planes in a single day. That is why he asks the international community to support… Continue reading "José María Liu (Taiwan):« For us, the support of the United States is indispensable in the face of the threat from China »"

The Latin Leap fund launches in Latin America to attract Asian companies

The firm seeks to connect Asian scaleups with clients and suppliers in Latin America.