When going for a shopping trip in markets (not in shopping malls or regular stores) in Beijing remember these principles and phrases


  1. Expect and be prepaed for a lot of bargaining. Don't feel shy or ackward ; this is the norm here. Else you would throw away your money.
  2. Ni hao ( Hello) to start the conversation and "Tai gui le" ( Too expensive) are two useful terms you need to use again and again. 
  3. Do NOT start buying for the first shop you visit. Have a look around, ask prices and then decide. 
  4. When given a price , divide it by ten and tell her ( Yes almost all of the shopkeepers in these malls are ladies)  your price. Do not feel offended if she says " are you crazy" or " Gestures angrily"." I lose money" and "Impossible". Start walking away and when she calls start bargaining. You will get the item at 20-40% of the originally quoted price
  5. Most markets are at  a walking distance from the subway station ( 2 Yuan Ticket)




You will find what you are looking for on Wangfujing. Besides the international labels, you will also find some of the greatest Chinese brands including LI-NING Sportswear. They have 2 flagship stores on Wangfujing. Great stores. Some call it the Chinese Nike, the quality is the same but the great thing is their sports wear contains many oriental spirit in its designs. When in Wanfuging DO NOT miss the food street which has scorpions, sea horses, rays, cocoons and star fishes being served as delicacies. If you are lucky you might see a curious ( and courageous) foreigner trying these delicacies in front of you. Understand that the Wangfujing street area is mostly visited by tourists (rarely locals are seen there) including Chinese tourists and full of scammers.

Department Stores and Malls

Beijing is the kingdom of malls and department stores.

Malls at Oriental Plaza,  1 Dongchang'an Jie

Oriental Plaza is a huge complex. It's got the Grand Hyatt Hotel, plenty of offices and of course the big mall. At the mall you've got everything from an American-like-food store, food court, apple retailer, record shop with lots of extra-cheap records, Starbucks, Nautica, Levi's, Swarovski, Paul Smith, Valentino and many other luxury boutiques.

Sun Dong An Plaza, 138 Wanfujing Daije

Here you've got Western labels for everyone to share. Reebok, Nike, Däagen Haz, FCUK; it's all here. 

Pearl Market (Hongqiao Market), 16 Hongqiao Lu

Don't be fooled by the name. While the Pearl Market does sell its name-sake, it also sells just about everything else. If you want to bone up on your bargaining skills, check this place out. Just remember, a lot of it is knockoff, so be wary if you plan on buying pearls (better to bring along a guide, if possible). 

Panjiayuan (Dirt Market),

This market is only on weekend and it is recommended that you get there very early as most of the stalls are set up by dawn. You will find an array of goods for sale here and it's the best place to shop for arts and crafts, antiques, souvenirs. It is an outdoor market and it can get extremely crowded so do make sure you keep a good eye on your valuables.

 Silk Market, Jianguomenwai Dajie

 Located on the northern side of Jianguomenwai Daijie you will find a range of fake clothing, jackets, bags, purses, shoes, souvenirs, paintings and jewelry. All indoors there are many floors of this market to explore. This is a hot spot of tourist and so often the prices will be high even after bargaining. Be careful against pickpockets as this market does get busy and crowded. 

Yashou Clothing Market, 58 Gongrentiyuchang Beilu

Similar to the Silk Market and Pearl Market you will find fake clothing, souvenirs, bags, and fake ski jackets here. There a tailors on the third floor who can make custom made clothing for you within 24 hours. The market is approximately a 20CNY taxi ride from the centre of town and is further out than the Silk Market however you will find that there aren't as many tourist and you will be able to get a better price there than the Silk Market. As with all the markets you need to bargain hard, most of the starting prices will be outrageous and often you will end up paying 10% - 30% of this price. This market closes at 8h30pm.  Don't listen to what the sales people are telling you. "You are killing me " " I lose money" and "Impossible" ...  T-shirts: 20-25RMB Running Shoes: 50-80 RMB Dress Shoes: 80-100 RMB "timberland" boots: 120RMB Belts: 20 RMB Ties: 10 RMB Custom Shirts: 80 RMB Custom Suits: 600-800 RMB Jeans: 80 RMB Jackets: 100-150 RMB Baby clothes: 20-40 RMB 


Reference: A map and detailed information for shopping in Beijing