Shopping in Hanoi – Finding Bargains and Luxury Goods in Vietnamese Capital

in Vietnam

Vietnam’s capital city, Hanoi, is a rich shopping mecca, offering opportunities for luxury lovers and bargain hunters alike. Known as the Paris of the Orient, this Vietnamese city specializes in fashions and homewares.

The Old Quarter is the hub of Hanoi’s shopping district with its modern malls and traditional markets. If your time is limited make sure you hit up the Dong Xuan Market. This three-storey market has hundreds of stalls selling just about everything including knitwear, gourmet foods, jewelry, imitation designer fashions, cosmetics, and woven mats. Bargain hunters should also explore Hang Bac and Hang Be. Stores here sell lacquerware and other traditional goods at backpacker-friendly prices.piggy bank world

To make shopping convenient for tourists, stores in one street or district commonly sell similar goods. For example, Hang Gai is known as “Silk Street,” and European designer and high-end goods can be found at Nha Tho.

If you’re after a special souvenir of your stay it’s worth moving away from the city center. Half an hour from Hanoi you’ll find the small village of Bat Trang, a community which has made pottery for more than 400 years.

These local crafts also make wonderful gifts for loved ones back home.

While bargaining is not appropriate at galleries and shopping centers, it is still practiced at many smaller stores. As a rule, if goods are marked with a price this is non-negotiable. However, if you are verbally told the price it’s customary to haggle it down. Early morning is not a good time to bargain, but shopkeepers are often open to giving a discount later in the day.

It’s easy to go overboard when shopping in Hanoi. Thankfully though, most stores are happy ship any large items home for you. It’s also important to keep track of what you’re spending. Many countries require travelers to declare when they have spent more than a specified amount on foreign soil. Consult the customs authorities in your own country to learn the rules applicable to you.

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