Guangzhou: wholesale markets for clothes, shoes, toys, electronic products and more.
Shopping Is Not Obligatory
Don't feel obligated to shop. Our guides offer shopping
opportunities as a courtesy (if you opt out of our NO SHOPS policy), but if you're not interested, you will not get any pressure at all from us.
Other tour guides and sellers may be quite enthusiastic, thinking this is what you want, so
don't be embarrassed to tell them directly and immediately that you
don't want to go shopping. You'll often find several attendants trying
to help you make a purchase. This doesn't mean you have to buy; it's OK
to say no, or just to look around.
Outside tourist spots or on the road, there might be some vendors who follow you and try to sell you something. If you are not interested, just ignore them and keep going. See Avoiding Tourist Traps.
Be Cautious of Fake Items
Shopping is great in China and you can expect to be able to buy many things at a much better price that at home.Please however be warned that if a bargain price for a world famous brand seems too good to be true... it probably is!
Antique buyers should know that many experts have been
disappointed to find that their find of a lifetime is beautiful but
fake. Antiques should be officially certified to be exported legally.
The penalties are severe. Keep all receipts, certificates and official
documents that are received when you purchase any antiques. Antiques
are those items over 120 years of age.
Smart Shopping — How to Bargain in China
Bargaining is a national pastime in China so you will find
that most retailers except for department stores, large shopping malls
will be prepared to bargain. Prepare some small change for buying inexpensive stuff. Vendors are usually reluctant to find change for a 100 yuan note.
There's lots of shopping to do in the capital city (and other places in China), but it's important to be prepared by understanding how find the best prices for the goods you want. Aside from knowing where to go and what to shop for, make sure your bargaining skills are up to snuff, or you may end up paying far more than you should have.
Many things, like designer goods and some electronics are actually more expensive in China than in Western countries, so wait on buying those until you are back home.
Markets to Try
You can, however, find good deals in markets around the city on items like jade, pearls, tailor-made clothing or knock-off designer clothing and accessories. The most popular markets are the Silk Market and Yashow clothing market, but as a result prices start much, much higher than at other markets like the Pearl Market (which sells much more than just pearls) or the Zoo Market.
Speaking of the Zoo Market, if you have a Chinese-speaking friend, this is where you'll get the best deals. You can try it on your own, but it is much trickier as generally shop attendants do not speak English here.
Regardless of the market you go to, here are some tips to help you get the best price on all your goods.
Bring your poker face. Rule number one of bargaining: never (ever!) act like you absolutely must have the item. Salesmen love customers that are excited about a product – it means they can price it much higher. Play it cool – if you see something you really want, keep a straight face and act like you'd rather walk away than pay a fortune, and you'll get a much better price.
Start low. Really low. Depending on the market, the starting price could be 7 or 8 times what it should be. Keep this in mind when you throw out your first price. You can always go up from there, but you can't go back down.
Shop around. See something you like? Walk around and see if other stands have it. That way, if you can't get the price you want, you can always walk away and try a different stand.
Observe other people. If someone else is buying the same thing for a reasonable price, tell the seller you want the same price. Sometimes you can avoid the back-and-forth routine altogether!
Be firm, but stay polite. Don't underestimate the importance of allowing the seller to save face. Sometimes, negotiations do not go the way you planned. Especially in larger clothing markets, sellers may act outraged by a low price, but keep your cool. Often if you say something insulting, or even quote a price that is ridiculously low, the seller may decide not to sell to you at all.
Come back for more. If you know what you want, and you've gotten a certain price from that stand before, sometimes you can save time by just assertively saying that price from the get-go. They see that you know, and they want to save their time too. You can also get a better deal when you buy multiple things from the same seller.
You should check the import restrictions in your home
country as some items may attract tax on arrival in your home country,
especially if it is mailed or shipped separately.
Q: Am I allowed to bring back purchased electronics to the USA in my luggage?
A: There is no problem in taking
electronics back to the USA. Consider excess baggage
(if you intend to take a lot) and duty, which would be collected by US
Customs on entry. Check your duty free limit, and ensure
the electronics are packed well to prevent breakage. See our Customs Regulations page for more information.
In addition, when you make the decision, you need to double check the
electronics you buy can also work in the USA (voltage, etc.). See China Power Supply and Adapters for more information.
It is my understanding that Michael Kors handbags are made in China. Can you tell me how much discount I an get if I wait to purchase handbags in China instead of local stores, i.e. Macys.
I am sorry I am not familiar with these handbags and I can't give any details about it.
If you are interested in traveling to China, I am glad to arrange a tour for you. Lussie Lu replied on 2014-06-09
Paul Duah-Boateng 2014-05-27
Want to know the best electronic shop where I can buy quality laptop.
Zhongguancun High-Tech Center is known as "China's Silicon Valley" and is Beijing's high-tech center because of its many universities and IT-based companies. You could go there for shopping. Its address is 18 Zhongguancun Street, Handian District (海淀区中关村大街18号). Lussie Lu replied on 2014-05-28
nana Nkambule 2014-03-19
I want to go shopping in China, so how do I go and which places have nice things? I want to buy in bulk like shoes and handbags ets.
Hi Nana, for shoes, I suggest that you go to Wenzhou. For handbags, I recommend Guangzhou to you. Whitney Liao replied on 2014-03-20
where do I get cheap cellphones but I want originals guest replied on 2014-04-14
Dear Nana, sorry, we are a travel agency. We don't have those information. If you need any tour service, please feel free to contact me. Whitney Liao replied on 2014-04-14
Piyush saini 2014-03-18
Hi I m going china for some footwear import . Please tell me the place from where I can meet the manufactures .
you can try http://www.generalshoppingshop.com guest replied on 2014-08-10
I often buy from http://www.generalshoppingshop.com
You can get more business from there . trust me! tinapan replied on 2014-08-10
Hi Piyush, you can go to the Global International shoes Trade Centre 国际鞋城步云天地
Global International shoes trade centre is also known as Bu Yun Tian Di Shoes World. It is one of Guangzhou main shoes wholesale centers.
Address :Zhan Xi Road 26# ,Near Guangzhou Railway Station