Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Market Shopping 101 in Hong Kong!

In every travel handbook, website, guide, etc the most highly recommended street market in Hong Kong to visit is the Ladies Market located in Mong Kok.  As luck may have it, the hotel I stay it for the 4 trips I make to Hong Kong for work is located in the heart of Mong Kok.  This infamous market is literally steps away from the hotel and once you enter you are whisked away to endless booths selling everything from tricked out iPhone phone covers, knock-off handbags, kids' toys, to apparel and footwear.  You name it, 9 times out of 10 they've got it.

My first trip here was seriously one of the most overwhelming shopping experiences of my life.  Not only is it visually over-stimulating with all of the various product, but then you have the different sellers approaching you with enticing discounts and deals to enter their booth and to bottom line buy something.

This is now my official fourth trip to Hong Kong, so I am feeling more like a veteran.  Not just because negotiating large buys is what I do for a living and the sole reason why I am here in Hong Kong, but because I've learned how to be more a savvy street market negotiator.  I strongly believe that these skills are what have made me a pro at negotiating at the Chicago Randolph Street Market and what ensure that I always pay what I deem fit (and probably why I love the Auction Hunters-but that's for another post).

Check out my tips based of my learnings and use them in your future ventures to your local flea/street markets:


  1. Always wear a comfortable ensemble that can be described by: comfort, functional, easy, but most importantly chic.  See my outfit post as inspiration: here
  2. Go prepared with a clear list of what you are looking for.  Don't under estimate the power of a list.  It will prevent you from deviating for a central goal especially if you are only there for a handful of items.
  3. Never accept the first price given. One thing I've learned you can always, always get to the price you want to pay by staying strong to your price.  If they don't seem to waver, start to walk-away and they will always immediately reconsider.  Any flea/street market seller's number one goal is to sell all their items. You as the buyer will always have the upper hand, never forget that.
  4. Stay hydrated.  Having a bottle of water handy will keep you from becoming dehydrated. 
  5. Have Fun! I always meet the most interesting people and find some of the most unique accessories and trinkets at flea/street markets.

Check out some of my pics from my latest visit to the Ladies Market!

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