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      06-01-2005, 07:11 PM   #1
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ED: Shopping in Europe! Any Great Deals?

I plan on doing an ED at the end of July, and though I can't stay very long, I want to try to make the most of my trip. Can anyone recommend some shopping locations if I'm looking to purchase European luxury goods like clothes, shoes, and other accessories made by the likes of Prada, Gucci, Hermes, Boss, etc...? I have never been to Europe, so any info would be appreciated, especially if you have something important to tell an American shopper that might come in handy!

It would be great if someone knew of places to find great bargains of items you can buy/find at upscale stores and boutiques in the US, but are cheaper because you are in Europe. Do they have such things as outlet malls in Europe? Also, can you get sales taxes and value added taxes of goods purchased over there reimbursed to you when you get back to the US? Thanks.
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      06-01-2005, 08:44 PM   #2
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you know i think the things will be more expensive in europe cuz the exchange rate from doller to euro is more i think its $1.30 for 1 euro(any one correct me if iam wrong plz)
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      06-01-2005, 10:01 PM   #3
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The $/euro rate was at $1.2203 today - an 8 month high against the Euro. I'm picking up my 330 in July so I hope this trend continues!
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      06-01-2005, 10:25 PM   #4
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I'm sure once the European members wake up they will be able to help you out.
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      06-01-2005, 11:07 PM   #5
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Paris (Champs Elyesses sp? and area) have all those stores. The company I work for has shopping malls worldwide but from my travels malls in Europe are much different than those here in the states. They do have them but don't expect a Galleria like mall or anything like any of the Mills owned properties. Don't forgot, like mentioned above, your losing on the dollar though the Euro has been a falling a little lately. Most purchases I make overseas are wine (it helps though to be flying on a private aircraft) and usually something unique to the area that will be a nice momento of your travels. The Forum Shops at Ceasars Palace in LV has all those shops you mentioned above.

BTW, nothing is cheaper in Europe, not even McDonald's!

Last edited by jetmechG550; 06-01-2005 at 11:15 PM.
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      06-02-2005, 12:11 AM   #6
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Thanks for the post. I can imagine there are great places for shopping, especially at the famous European places and big cities. But I'm also looking for places not often mentioned and you have to be a local or very experienced to know of these gems.

For example, if a European asked me the question I originally posted on this thread and he was coming to NYC for the first time. I could easily point him to 5th Ave and SOHO, but he would probably already be aware of those places. I think if I told him of Woodbury Common Outlets, that might be of particular value to him because it's not common knowledge for foreign shoppers (I think), and he might find great value there. I'm not saying I'm looking for outlet malls per se, just reviews of places people really enjoy or something that is not well known but definitely worth visiting if you want to go shopping.

Also, does anyone know about the foreign sales tax/value added taxes being able to be reimbursed to foreign nationals. For example, when I go to Toronto and make large purchases, I usually fill out... what is it, a duties card?... or something they give me on the airplane or a duty-free shop where I can get the sales taxes I paid on merchandise purchases refunded to me by the Canadian government because I'm a US citizen. Has anyone had experience with this in Europe - Germany, Italy, France, UK, etc.?

I was afraid that the goods I'm looking for here are just as or more expensive. I was hoping that, for example, a favorite pair of Italian shoes which cost $350 at Neiman Marcus or a boutique in the US would cost less in Europe. Wouldn't this make sense since you're closer to the country of origin? I guess I should know better... probably these brands need to maintain a certain level of global "exclusitivity" by making prices consistent everywhere. Well, if anyone knows any great places that gives great value if you're looking to pick up Hermes ties or Prada shoes and the like, please give me a shout out! Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jetmechG550
Paris (Champs Elyesses sp? and area) have all those stores. The company I work for has shopping malls worldwide but from my travels malls in Europe are much different than those here in the states. They do have them but don't expect a Galleria like mall or anything like any of the Mills owned properties. Don't forgot, like mentioned above, your losing on the dollar though the Euro has been a falling a little lately. Most purchases I make overseas are wine (it helps though to be flying on a private aircraft) and usually something unique to the area that will be a nice momento of your travels. The Forum Shops at Ceasars Palace in LV has all those shops you mentioned above.

BTW, nothing is cheaper in Europe, not even McDonald's!
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      06-02-2005, 12:47 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedStripe
Also, does anyone know about the foreign sales tax/value added taxes being able to be reimbursed to foreign nationals. For example, when I go to Toronto and make large purchases, I usually fill out... what is it, a duties card?... or something they give me on the airplane or a duty-free shop where I can get the sales taxes I paid on merchandise purchases refunded to me by the Canadian government because I'm a US citizen. Has anyone had experience with this in Europe - Germany, Italy, France, UK, etc.?

I was afraid that the goods I'm looking for here are just as or more expensive. I was hoping that, for example, a favorite pair of Italian shoes which cost $350 at Neiman Marcus or a boutique in the US would cost less in Europe. Wouldn't this make sense since you're closer to the country of origin? I guess I should know better... probably these brands need to maintain a certain level of global "exclusitivity" by making prices consistent everywhere. Well, if anyone knows any great places that gives great value if you're looking to pick up Hermes ties or Prada shoes and the like, please give me a shout out! Thanks.
Yes, there is a VAT (Value Added Tax) form. However, I was a military dependent when I lived in Europe so I'm not sure if civilians can use the form or not. My guess would be that they could, you'd just have to find out how to get one or two of them. They're really only good for larger monetary purchases though.

If you have time, a quick jaunt to the Czech Republic and you could find good deals. Can't remember the name of the city, but we would go every so often. We'd be able to get Nikes that would originally be $90 (here in the US) for about $20. However, big namebrands like you're looking for probably won't be as cheap as you'd like them to be. Like others have said, since the Euro is higher than the dollar you'd be losing money.

Locally though, I'd suggest a trip to Heidelberg and Mannheim. I spent the best 6 years of my life there and the area is beautiful. There is a shopping mall (as close as you can get compared to a US mall) called the Rhein-Neckar Zentrum in Viernheim. Shopping in downtown Mannheim and downtown Heidelberg is especially good as well. Just use the strassenbahn; it's easy to get around.

Here is a quick site I found on the Rhein-Neckar Zentrum. Dont think it lists stores though. http://www.ece.de/de/shopping/center/rnv/rnv.jsp
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      06-02-2005, 02:55 AM   #8
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since we're on the topic of europe, how much does it cost avg to stay in a hotel for a few weeks? don't need 5 star, just something comfortable is alright
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      06-02-2005, 03:10 AM   #9
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redstripe,

unfortunately, shopping here in europe is more expensive compared to shopping back in the states. they rarely have sales and if you are looking for premium brands like boss, prada, gucci, etc. be prepare to pay full retail. here in germany, there is no such thing as knock offs. Italy however is a different story. VAT in Germany is 16%. You would pay this up front when purchasing goods and fill out a tax free form during the purchase, when you get to the border or airport, you can claim the taxes back. the exchange rate as of today is $1=.79 Euro. Even though this is a 7month low for the euro vs the $. It's still high. I was able to shop for high ticket items three years ago when the exchange rate was the other way around. With the current rate, you are better off shopping back in the states. Nothing compares to USA for shopping. It's great being able to shop online and not suffer the limited selection here abroad. example, there is only two GAP stores that i know of here in Germany. One in Stuttgart and another one way up north. Prices are much more expensive due to exchange rate and selections are limited.

Living here is a great experience but shopping is not just at the top of the list. If the exchange rate were the other way around, then that's a different story.

Oh forgot to mention, if you get a chance to go to Italy (Milan), now that is a place for clothes shopping. You can get high quality silk ties for around 15-20 euros.. I compared them back in the states and they go for around 40 on up.

p.s. there's no such thing as outlet mall here. I miss the woodbury outlet mall in NY.
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      03-17-2018, 06:59 PM   #10
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Arrow Outlet Malls...

Quote:
Originally Posted by A61 View Post
redstripe,

p.s. there's no such thing as outlet mall here. I miss the woodbury outlet mall in NY.
RedStripe

There are MANY outlet shops in Germany. But they mostly have last year's fashsions at good prices. Disney owns these outlet shops bellow. I have only been to Wertheim... to be honest I'd rather spend my money on tools in Obi or Hornbach(German hardware stores) than on clothes. lol But these places might be of interest to others on ED or who live over here in DE.

Most Germans travel to the states to find good deals!


There is Wertheim Village near Wurzburg off the A3 Autobahn...
www.wertheimvillage.com/en/home


Ingolstadt Village - off the A9 near Ingolstadt... (just North of Munich)
www.ingolstadtvillage.com/en/home/

Maasmechelen Village - near Brussels/Köln/Antwerpen
www.maasmechelenvillage.com/en/home

LA VALLÉE VILLAGE near Paris...
www.lavalleevillage.com/en/home/

Fidenza Village - near Milan/Bologna...
www.fidenzavillage.com/en/


Notable mentions...

Also... try going to Google Maps... select the area of Germany you will visit.... then search for: "outlets". You are bound to find a few places.


South of Stuttgart...

OUTLETCITY METZINGEN...
www.outletcity.com/en/metzingen



@A61 I'll take a guess and say you are stationed in Spangdahlem AFB ? You might try visiting these places...

City Outlet Bad Münstereifel
www.cityoutletbadmuenstereifel.com


Centre Commercial Langwies 1 et 2 - Luxembourg
www.langwies.lu/de

McArthurGlen Luxembourg...
www.mcarthurglen.com/be





I have been to this mall: CentrO in Oberhausen... and its very much like a US style mall. A few hundred stores over two levels with four big anchor dept stores. I would recommend spending an afternoon here. There is also a Disney theater near by and the Gas-O-Meter thing next door. Lots of French and Dutch come here bc it's just over the border for them. Christmas time here is CRAZY!!

CentrO - shopping mall in Oberhausen
Centroallee 1000, 46047 Oberhausen
www.centro.de



One mall that I really, really like is in Modena, Italy. It's called: Grandemilia. Just take the Modena North exit on the A22/E45 (Brenner Autostrada). Inside Grandemilia is about 50 stores like Timberland and Disney and Prada... but its also has THE largest grocery store you have ever seen! Ninety eight checkout lanes, so much fresh Fish, Sushi, Wurst, cooked foods, plus everything for the house and family. It's kind of the Italian version of Walmart. It's called: Coop or Iper COOP. I think it means super CO'OP. Anyways... the store is HUGE and they have an awesome selections of delicious foods. IF you are in the area... I highly recommend a visit!

COOP there also runs a gas station which has really quite decent fuel prices - very unItalianlike. I was there last week... here in Germany SuperPlus(Premium) runs about 1,47 per liter. While in Italy most places had only Super(mid grade) for 1,80 per liter. COOP had SuperPlus for 1.45 a liter. I thought that was fairly cheap bc in the summer months... I am sure Italian fuel will be close to 2,00's per liter!


Grandemilia
Via Emilia Ovest, 1480
41123 Modena MO, Italy
www.grandemilia.it




Here are some pictures from Grandemilia inside the Iper COOP, that I took earlier this week...
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IF you travel to Millan you MUST visit Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. It's downtown near the huge cathedral.


Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
Piazza del Duomo
20123 Milano MI, Italy
www.visitamilano.it



Since you will be in Munich for your ED... everyone should pop into Galeria Kaufhof, in the downtown area. It is a large, typical dept store with lots of goodies for man or woman. It's located on one end of the Marienplatz, Glockenspiel. Downstairs they have a decent selection of German tourist goodies.

Galeria Kaufhof München Marienplatz
Kaufingerstraße 1-5,
80331 München

www.galeria-kaufhof.de

Downstairs in the lower floor U2 I think? They have a really nice deli/bakery. International foods and really nice foods are found here. Worth a visit!



Some other really nice shops for special clothes or one off things would be...


LUDWIG BECK - Kaufhaus der Sinne
Marienplatz 11,
80331 München

www.ludwigbeck.de


Hirmer GROSSE GRÖSSEN München
Kaufingerstraße 28
80331 München

www.hirmer.de


Restaurant Dallmayr the famous coffee house. Also next door they have a fantastic delicatessen(don't think cold cuts but rather the finer things in Life) with cigars and chocolates and everything fine. The prices are also out of this world! $$$ But its fascinating to go inside and look around and maybe indulge in something.

Restaurant Dallmayr (I'd say this place is a MUST see place when in Munich!!)
Dienerstraße 14-15,
80331 München

www.dallmayr.com


Walking down the street.... there is the Manufactum Warenhaus. Think of one part bakery, one part cheese shop, one part sharper image and one part Neiman Marcus. This place is really cool. Also a must visit shop I think.

Manufactum Warenhaus
Dienerstraße 12
80331 München

www.manufactum.de


I'd say walk this route behind the Marienplatz. Then go for a nice dinner at the Hofbrau Hof or any other nice beer garden in the downtown area. Andechs(Andechser am Dom) or Zum Augustiner(Neuhauserstr. 27, 80331 München) with their famous "muscle sea shell room" or the Brenner Operngrill - any of those places would be quite memorable!


Dackel's shopping walking tour of downtown Munich...
https://www.google.de/maps/dir/Porsc...4249!3e2?hl=en



A61 is correct about getting your VAT refunded. Just pack your purchases as carry one... when your at the airport to leave... show the ZOLL(German customs) your purchases and receipts. They will stamp your VAT REFUND form... then you get the VAT back a few weeks later after you are back in the states. German VAT is 19% now. About ten years ago it was only 16%. There is one politician who wears "22" pins and wants to raise the VAT to 22%. ugggh!


Living and experiencing Europe has more to do with living than shopping. In Germany the prices for goods seem to be "set" or regulated. There are only two times per year when stores can offer "sales" for one week in February and one week in July. Winterschlussverkauf and Sommerschlussverkauf. This practice dates back to Adolf's time in power. Kind of like how the shops had to close by a certain time(6pm or 8pm and at noon on Saturdays). Fortunately, this law was abolished ten years ago in Bayern. In Bayern(Bavaria) all stores are closed on Sundays. And most museums are closed on Mondays, including the BMW Museum.

If you have any other Q's... just ask away.

Dackel
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      03-18-2018, 04:12 PM   #11
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European here: I never shop in Europe, unless it's a brand you cannot get in the USA. Just not worth it.
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      03-19-2018, 11:58 AM   #12
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I get emails all the time to fix ED. No need to fly anywhere . . .
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      03-20-2018, 05:24 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P1et View Post
European here: I never shop in Europe, unless it's a brand you cannot get in the USA. Just not worth it.
+1

Im keeping my shopping list for my trip into the US at summer already still in my pocket...wifey too
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      03-20-2018, 06:58 AM   #14
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      03-21-2018, 03:10 PM   #15
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Cool US guy stuck in formerly great Britannia

As mentioned, most people leave here to go shopping. (The UK isn't sure if it's in Euroland though... depends on who you ask. lol)

If your wife likes Chanel, take her to Coco's original boutique/apartment on Rue Cambon in Paris. After you buy her a £xx,000 purse, you can pose on Coco's mirrored stairwell and have your picture taken. Hell, you might even whimsically buy yourself a £700 necktie because, "F*&% it.. we're doing stupid shit with money today! Yay!" haha

You will be able to leverage this to your benefit for a long time. (You will also drink a lot right after as you consider how much you spent... lol)
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