The evaluation of how to rank is based on five categories including shops, affordable price, convenience, hotel and public transport, culture and climate. Overall, Ho Chi Minh (other name Saigon) City is ranked 19th in the global shopping index, just stand behind Osaka City – Japan some points and stand ahead Busan City of Korea. Hong Kong is topped the list and is considered as the most attractive city for home and outside tourists lovers of shopping in the Asia-Pacific region.
Are you an “addiction” shopping believer but extremely abashed when getting the first tour of Saigon? Don’t you know what you should buy and where you should go to shopping in Saigon to have the unique items with the cheapest price? Below are the shopping points as well as products you shouldn’t miss when traveling HCM City. The shopping believers will be “bumper” due to the diversity of goods from affordable to the most luxurious things.
Saigon shopping – What had better you purchase?
• The clothes shopping
The garment and fashion industry in HCM City is developed very much so it is very easy for you to choose the clothes of the trend with prices ranging from affordable to high-end. Saigoneses usually buy clothes in shops along Nguyen Trai Street and Saigon Square. However, you ought to pay attention that Saigon Square has 2 different locations, namely Saigon Square 1 and Saigon Square 2. All clothes products in these places are similar but Saigon Square 2 is more spacious and airy.
• The shoes shopping
The HCM City seems to have specific streets to sell only kind of product (shoes are not an exception). In fact, this city has 2 ways just for kinds of shoes. When buying shoes, you should pay attention their quality to avoid choosing the poor-quality products. The Ly Chinh Thang Street is filled by the fashionable shoes shops with many styles and sizes.
Another shoes street is the Luu Van Lang, is located in the side of the Ben Thanh Market. The shops on this street have a lot of types of sport shoes and sandals while the Ly Chinh Thang Street specializes in the fashionable shoes.
• The bag and suitcase shopping
If you need purchase a suitcase to contain your new goods, let you visit the Le Lai Street located between the New World Saigon Hotel and the Ben Thanh Market. At this place, you will be seen the whole street full different suitcase kinds of the famous brands: North Face, Samsonite and many other brands. Besides, the Saigon Square and the Binh Tay Market are also the attractive suggestions. In case you are planning to use a bag when walking on the street, keep in mind to always wear a waist pack to avoid becoming a victim of robbery.
• The watch shopping
If you want to find the best fake watch, let you say the name of the brand and you will find it in HCM City. Obviously, you can easily buy it in the Ben Thanh Market but a fairly expensive price is a must. If you have time to explore, you should visit stalls at the Binh Tay Market or shops around where you can buy the good watches with a very cheap price. The Binh Tay Market is to specialize wholesale so it provides a variety of products for both the HCM city and several neighboring provinces. Moreover, you can also go up to the top floor of the Saigon Tax Trade Center where has many kinds of jewellery and watch items.
• The handicraft shopping
The handicrafts sold in the HCM City are very unique and rich especially the lacquer products and cooking utensils made from coconut. These products are very suitable to make gifts and ornaments for your home. You can find the silk clothes embroidered by hands with a lot of exotic textures. If you prefer craft items made of wood, you can choose the handcrafted wooden boats and statues (very beautiful).
The An Dong Plaza is the best place to find out many kinds of lacquer items with the best price, is located at the Chinatown in District 5. The Saigon Tax Trade Center is also an appropriate place to look for the lacquer products with a reasonable price, if you don’t want to move too far from the city center. The Ben Thanh Market is the best place to opt for the best pieces of clothes and the best handicraft wooden boats.
Read more: “Vietnam handicrafts: what to buy for souvenirs?”
• The antiques shopping
If you are interest in antiques, let you go to the Le Cong Kieu where is located just outside the Ben Thanh Market. This place sells a lot of goods such as coins, stamps, the antiques of the war period, the statues made of ivory and bone…
• Buying the impressive paintings
The HCM City owns many art galleries. The majority of these art gallery owners are the very talented and well-known artists. Here, it is very easy for you to find out the copies of the famous paintings or paintings of little-known artists. Unlike other items like shoes, you can’t look for streets crowded galleries. With Saigoneses, if they would like to purchase for themselves paintings as gifts or as ornaments for their living room, they will come to art galleries in the Tran Phu Street, District 5 or the Bui Vien Street, District 1.
• The cloth shopping
The HCM City is a great place to choose freely the pieces of cloth with a variety of materials and colors. You will buy some with an “attractive” price at the street specializing cloth where is located opposite to the Tan Binh Market, District 1. You can also visit the Soai Kim Lam Cloth Market in the Saigon’s Chinatown (Cholon), this is a specialized wholesale market so the price is quite cheap even there are more choices.
The specific information of where you can shopping in Saigon
• The Ben Thanh Market
Serves mainly for tourists, the Ben Thanh Market sells a lot of products such as handicraft items, clothing, pieces of cloth, shoes… Except the selling area of Saigon Co.op with the listed prices, remember to consider price careful before buying.
At night, around the Ben Thanh Market forms a bustling night market area with a variety of goods and foods. However, don’t forget that the night market is famous for price out of the market and overcharging. Therefore, if you are intending go to shopping here, you should master the prices of products as well as how to tell their quality. The principle of bargain at the Ben Thanh Market is to lower 1/3 even 1/5 of the original price.
Address: The South Gate (between the Phan Boi Chau Street – Phan Chu Trinh Street – Le Thanh Ton Street – Quanh Thi Trang Square) – The Ben Thanh Ward – District 1.
• The Saigon Square
This is the most preferred shopping address of many female Saigoneses. With the advantage of common to intermediate clothes, shoes, bags, Saigon Square is regular crowed by customers especially at the weekends. Here, you can find out the most fashionable items or clothing for 4 seasons (spring, summer, fall, winter). Shopping here, you ought to bargain careful as there are some places overcharging (double).
• The Binh Tay Market
This is a wholesale market so commodity here will be very cheap, if you buy in bulk. However, buying retail, price is not cheaper than too much even sellers are less enthusiastic. A lot of shops at the Binh Tay Market have listed prices available or don’t overcharge too much (10 – 20%).
Address: The Binh Tay Market, 57A Thap Muoi, Ward 2, District 6, the HCM City.
• The shopping centers: Diamond Plaza, Parkson, Vincom, Saigon Center
These are the high-end commercial centers in the HCM City. Besides the high-end shops, after going to shopping, you can call a halt at the cuisine areas or get entertainment right in the building.
Address: Diamond Plaza 34 Le Duan, District 1; Parkson, 35 Bis – 45, Le Thanh Ton, District 1; Vincom, 45A Ly Tu Trong, District 1; Saigon Centre, 65 Le Loi, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1..
• The fashion streets: Nguyen Trai, Hai Ba Trung, Le Van Sy
It can say that this is 3 quarters concentrated the most fashion shops in Saigon. Each street concentrates a wide range of large and small shops with high-end to common brands. With just a stroll around the fashion street, you will bring many items for sure.
The majority of stores in Nguyen Trai and Hai Ba Trung have quite famous brands even is listed prices clearly. That’s why it’s rare to be discounted. However, these shops will have the promotions on the major holidays or in the end of the year… In particular, most of goods in the Le Van Sy Street are more affordable a little that means its shops can reduce from 10-30% of the initial price.
What is more, there are other shopping addresses such as the An Dong Market, the Tan Binh cloth Market, the Tan Dinh Market, the Ba Chieu Market, The Cresent Mall Trade Center…