Non-EU visitors to Spain have a little extra incentive to bring souvenirs home: tax free shopping. So long as the goods bought are items that can be taken back to your country with you and the bill exceeds €90, you will make a saving of 18 percent on purchases. Look out for the Tax Free signs in shop windows.
Barcelona is a shopper's playground. A three mile (5km) shopping route runs from Las Ramblas, through Placa de Catalunya, along Passeig de Gràcia, and up Avenue Diagonal. Most of it is pedestrianised and pleasant to navigate on foot. The Tomb bus is a service specifically tailored for shoppers in the city, covering all the major retail centres; it departs every seven minutes from Catalonia Square and makes 28 stops up until Placa Pius XII. Tickets can be bought on the bus.
Barcelona is a very fashion conscious place and several big names such as Giorgio Armani, Burberry and Bally are represented in exclusive stores in the city while there are also local Spanish mega-fashion stores like Zara, Mango and Adolfo Dominguez. Travellers on a budget might want to take advantage of seasonal sales. Winter sales officially start around 10 January and summer sales around 5 July; savings are generally high, between 50 to 70 percent, during these sales.
Shops in Barcelona open at about 9am and close between 8pm and 9pm daily. Some shops close for a lunchtime siesta between 2pm and 4pm.
Our Travel Expert
Tendelle grew up in both the US and Taiwan. She worked a couple of years in New York as a management consultant before deciding to join the tourism industry. She now calls Barcelona home and works at a food tourism company, Foodie&Tours, which aims to find the best gastronomic experiences in Spain and beyond.
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