So you are planning a trip to Bangkok. You have heard of how cheap and good the shopping in Bangkok is. And you have seen all those Instagram photos of your friends’ Bangkok shopping loots – rows upon rows of neatly-arranged clothes and footwear covering an entire double bed. So, all stoked up and excited, you Google: “where to shop in Bangkok”.
Every travel blog you visit gives you the same list over and over again: Platinum Fashion Mall, Pratunam Market, Siam Square, Chatuchak Market…
But let me make this bold statement once and for all – forget all those places. UNION MALL is Bangkok’s best-kept secret for crazy-cheap shopping.
The last time I was in Bangkok, my travel partner and I spent a day going around Siam Square and Platinum Mall, getting sorely disappointed at the quality and prices of the goods on sale. They were all just average, and not as cheap as we expected them to be. Platinum Mall was also super big, with two different compounds and six levels each, and after a while all the stuff on sale started to look all the same – a common plague in large shopping centers.
Fortunately, a local friend tipped us about Union Mall, a shopping center catering to the young-adults crowd. It is the place she goes to all the time to shop, and she promised the goods on sale would be all unique and different. So the next day we made our way there, and true enough, it was shopping heaven.
Union Mall has 8 levels in total, complete with supermarkets and a foodcourt, but the levels we cared about were the three housing (most of) the clothes, footwear and accessories shops. Every shop did sell different things, and we seldom saw two places selling the same item. Well, it did seem that high-waisted trousers were all the rage in Bangkok at the time, and a number of shops were selling those. But other than that, we were spoiled by the abundance of unique choices.
Prices stayed in the THB100-250 (~SGD4-10) range, and we always haggled. The general rule of thumb we adhered to was to ask for THB100 cheaper for items quoted at THB300 and above, and to take it from there. Sellers were generally far friendlier than those we encountered at Platinum Fashion Mall as well, so there was no need to worry about getting shouted at for haggling too much.
All in all if you’re looking for cheap and really good shopping in Bangkok, Union Mall is the place to go. And did I mention, all the other shoppers were locals and we were the only tourists around? 😀 Happy shopping!
UNION MALL Ladprao Soi 1, Bangkok, Thailand 10900 Getting there: Phahon Yothin MRT Station Exit 5. Opening hours: 1100am to 1000pm daily.
TIP: We went at 11 am and all the shops were still closed. We waited around 30 minutes for the sellers to set up shop, so come earliest at 1130 or 12 noon!
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