7 best places to get a good shopping deal

I am shopoholic! Shopping is therapeutic for me, and the best part is that after a shopping binge I dont regret my actions since I know that I have got the best deal I am Mumbaikar and hence I know were I can get what at the lowest possible rates. Like me every Mumbaikar loves to shop; kids, couple, college going teenagers, office goers every one like to keep updated with the latest fashion and trends. So it is not a surprise that we Mumbaikars are willing to go to the end of the world to purchase things at the most reasonable price one can ever find. Mumbaikars are bargain savvy and are always looking for the best deals they can lay hands on. Hence it is natural that Mumbai has hundreds of bazaars that cater to the Paisa vasool mentality of the population. I have lived in at least 5 cities in the 24 yrs of my life and Mumbai bazaars are the most unique and fascinating places I have come across. One of the reasons being that each bazaar has a history of its own and each specializes in selling particular goods. So Mumbaikars are well aware precisely which market they can get what. Before I go with the 7 best places to get a good shopping deal here are a few rules you must follow while shopping anywhere in Mumbai

Things to keep in mind while shopping Make sure you demand for a bill after every purchase (Not applicable when it comes to street side shopping)
Always bargain. You will almost never be told a reasonable price at the first go
Do not buy from the very first shop you enter/vendor. Visit as many shops/vendor as possible and buy where you get the best bargain
Try and be a regular customer for one or two shops, so that the shopkeepers know you and you get better discounts than others

Heera Panna Shopping Centre
The Heera Panna Shopping Centre, located at Haji Ali, is one of the oldest shopping centers in Mumbai. It came into existence much before the mall culture hit the city and even after that, the shopping centre consisting of 144 shops, is still thriving. Heera Panna is a blissful place for all shopping freaks. Clothes, foot wear, accessories, music, jewellery, you name it, they have it and at great prices. This electronic haven is something you can’t get enough of, you will find the latest phone or gadget at unimaginably low prices.
It is not only a haven for small retail shops but also big brands, such as Titan, that have been in existence ever since the shopping centre first started. On the other hand, brands like Pepe, Spykar and Nokia have recently entered the place. The latest ones being Nike and Reebok.

Chor Bazaar
This is Mumbai’s famous Thieves Market where bargain-hungry tourists rummage for Ming vases and Muranos at throwaway prices. The main avenue is Mutton Street, flanked by rows of little antique shops that look like musty attics and sell just about anything from old ship parts, grandfather clocks and gramophones, to crystal chandeliers and old English tea sets. Others offer authentic Victorian furniture, wonderful for browsers, antiquarians and restorers. You will find each and every type of article, such as antiques, hardware, tools, wooden carvings, statues, figures, silver coins, engines, you name it and they’ll probably have it and sell it a reasonable price. P Because it is centrally located you can easily spend hours here. Some vendors are also accepting credit cards (but then you need more bargaining skills). Maybe you will find an old piece of antique belonging to the Maharaja’s or a reproduction of it. Check it out for yourself!
Although bargains are sometimes staggering, most of the shop owners are pretty street smart, and could easily take a self – styled aesthete for a ride, so brush up on your art before you go. This is the place where you get everything you would need — car horns, old paintings and even antique furniture. Today, you get valid bills with almost every purchase.
Most of the items on sale are purchased in auctions, through collectors or through people who want to sell off their old possessions. These things are bought after a thorough check.
Most, if not all, of the items available here are antique replicas and not authentic antiques.
On Fridays, all the shops in Chor Bazaar are shut and other vendors sell their wares on the street. In this Friday market, your bargaining skills will be tested. You can get an article quoted at Rs200, for as less as Rs20 if you know how to bargain shamelessly. The Friday market is a tradition more than 100 years old.
It is unlikely that shops in Chor Bazaar will compromise much on their initial quoted rate. At the most, they will reduce 15 to 20 per cent.

Kalbadevi Market
No visit to Mumbai is complete without a foray into the bazaars of Kalbadevi, north of Crawford Market. This is the heart of ethnic Mumbai, known as The Native Town in British times. The narrow lanes of this predominantly Muslim area, hemmed in by laundry-draped chawls, are a seething mass of people who bring the local traffic to a standstill. It is here that you can buy anything from jewellery (Zaveri Bazaar), material (Mangaldas Market), household goods (Bhuleshwar Road), stationery (Abdul Rehman Street) or electrical items (Lohar Chawl).

Crawford Market
Among the most vibrant markets in the city that jostles with life and enthusiasm, is Crawford market situated on the North of Victoria terminus in South Mumbai. Crawford market is famous for its wholesale fruits, fresh vegetables and poultry market.
Built in 1871, Crawford market is also known as Jyotiba Phule Market and more than just a wholesale market dealing with food items. You can marvel the grand architecture of this covered market that has a striking colonial imprint to it. The market is nestled between the British fort and the local town. Depicting a fusion of both Flemish and Norman architecture, Crawford market has a bas relief portraying Indian peasants in wheat field just above the main entrance.
With an aura of Victorian London, Crawford market owes its name to Arthur Crawford, Bombay’s first Municipal Commissioner. The market exhibits mountains of fruit and fresh vegetables that are sold here at wholesale rates; you can also get fresh meat at the poultry section nearing to the Crawford market. There are certain stalls that sell smuggled cheese and chocolate. The market is in the center of a whole network of lanes where you can pick up almost anything.

Linking & Hill Road, Bandra
Many people come from all over Mumbai and outside to shop on Linking Road. One can find everything from international brands to clever fakes to cheap Chinese goods here. There is a mix of departmental stores, brand outlets, street side carts and regular shops that sell mainly clothes and accessories. One can also find many restaurants and cafes dotted along the miles long stretch of this road.
Though it’s official name has been Vitthalbhai Patel Marg for a very long time, everyone in Mumbai still prefers to call it Linking Road.
Hill Road is also famous for a variety of shops. Vendors sell unusual and quirky designs in footwear, 70s and 80s fashion (mostly western wear) bags, belts and so on at a very reasonable side. Once you have done shopping you can cool down with a chilled beer at Temptations opposite Globus.

Colaba Causeway
Undoubtedly one of the most charming places in Mumbai, Colaba Causeway could proudly be termed the `Culture Square’ of Mumbai. The look and mood are reflective of its cosmopolitan feel; a classic example of the clich├ęd `East meets West’ — or rather Mumbai-meets-Bombay. Shopping or simply browsing through the Causeway in the evening is a pleasure since the area is a delightful mosaic of colors at play under bright yellow lights. An assorted mix of people throngs the Causeway footpaths, exploring the possibility of a good deal. The pavements are lined with stalls that display the trendiest of trinkets and fashion accessories at good prices. Scarves and stoles are strewn resplendently all over and are available in a variety of fabrics and styles. The chic look can cost as less as Rs 50 (one-third of the shop prices). Another favorite among the young crowd are the shops that sell semi-precious stones along with wooden, glass and porcelain beads. The variety of shapes sizes and designs is mind-blowing. What makes it better is that you can combine them the way you want and get accessories personalized on the spot, thus making it popular among people who want to make their own fashion statement. A visit to Colaba would be incomplete without a quick deal at the bag stalls. Scattered all over, they are available in rare ethnic patterns and styles. Some of them are overwhelmingly intricate with sequins and mirror work. You can also find an unusual collection of purses made of jute, cane and even wood here. A great piece of work would cost you anywhere between Rs 60 and Rs 100 here. One cannot afford to neglect the vibrant mojri stalls round the corner. You can buy the most delicate and fine handwork for your footwear for a steal! These can be made to order too and would not cost more than Rs 300. It is also one of the few places in Mumbai to offer Kolhapuri chappals in varied hues and shades.

Dadar Flower Market
The Dadar flower market also known as phool galli contains hundreds of flower shops, with bargain prices compared to the retail market. For instance, a decorative rose that retails for $0.18 to $0.23 is available here for $0.45 per dozen–less than $0.04 per flower. In addition to the crowds of merchants picking up goods for their retail outlets for resale purposes, many women come here to take advantage of the wonderful prices. So next time you want to send your better half a bouquet of red roses you know were to go.

1 Comment so far

  1. Raj (unregistered) on August 22nd, 2007 @ 10:41 pm

    Great Share thanx!

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