Shopping in Beijing to find bargains and haggle for the best prices is an essential part of the experience of visiting the city.
Walking and bargaining in the countless markets in Xiu Shui Jie Shopping Mall or the Xiu Shui Market will no doubt build up an appetite, but luckily there is plenty of food at these stalls for shoppers to refuel. Popular buys include fake designer labels, clothing and bags. Bargaining is an essential skill and an expected part of the transaction, but remember to keep a smile.
The main shopping area is around Wangfujing Dajie, where a number of department stores can be found, including the Beijing Department Store. The Xidan area offers wonderful big department stores selling fixed-price goods including electronic equipment. The Hong Qiao Market is a popular indoor market in the south central area of Beijing where bargaining is expected. Here buyers can haggle for goods such as cheap no-name or fake brand electronics, sunglasses, batteries, watches and jewellery.
Panjiayuan Collectors Market is an outdoor market with a good array of arts and crafts from all over China, including popular Beijing souvenirs like jade bracelets, cloisonné and lacquerware, silk, calligraphy, porcelain, and vintage Cultural Revolution books and posters. Beijing Tea Street is the best place to find anything associated with tea, including tables, tea sets, and a wide variety of teas.
Liulichang in the south of Beijing is a great place for Chinese antiques. Buyers should be aware that authentic antiques over 100 years old display a red wax seal. An export licence must be issued in order to take these out of the country.
Avoid shopping trips on evenings and weekends, as the crowds can be overwhelming. Shops in Beijing are open daily from 9am to 8pm and there is no sales tax.
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