|Bangkok is probably thebest place for shopping in Asia and travellers
will be spoiled for choice with a wide variety of shopping
centres, department stores, retail outlets, stalls and markets. Bangkok is a bargain
hunter’s paradise, and to haggle with street sellers
is expected and all part of the fun enjoyed by both buyer and seller.
One of the major shopping
districts is the Silom Road area where visitors can find many shops which include a number of specialist shops, and many department
stores include Robinson's, shopping
plazas and a wide selection of silk and antique shops,
as well as tailors.
Next to the Royal
Orchid Sheraton Hotel, the River City Shopping Complex boasts four floors selling antique products.
Most department stores sell fixed price products but usually offer
discounts to interested shoppers.
Emporium on Sukhumvit Road features brand-name
clothing, accessories, cinemas, restaurants and supermarkets, making it an ideal place for shopping.
A number of street vendors are widely found in the Sukhumvit Road area which are open during the day but are busiest at night. There are hundreds of stalls
selling clothes, bags, silk items and gifts. Aside from the colourful
and wild nightlife in Patpong, there is a lively night market where souvenirs and clothes are at good prices.
"Chatuchak", the weekend market located at Chatuchak Park, on Phaholyothin
Road, has everything that Thailand produces or grows, which include
furniture, carpets, ceramics, watches, clothes, food, pets and
Chinatown is loaded with gold shops, and the adjacent cloth
market at Phahurat sells a wide variety of great fabrics.
Woeng Nakhon Kasem, known as the ‘Thieves’
Market’, is situated between New and Yaowarat Roads, where you can find antique porcelain, copperware and furniture. Ideal purchases that are available in Bangkok include silk items, silver and gold,
gems (rubies and sapphires are indigenous to Thailand), pearls,
painted umbrellas and fans, wickerwork, ceramics, woodcarvings and
leather items. This is also a good place to have clothes made with high standards.
Many shops and stores are open 12 hours a day and 7 days a week, and the street
markets are open even longer, even though some are busier in the mornings
and others at night.
Other places for shopping are the Pratunaam Market,
Siam Square, and last but not the least is the
MBK centre (Maboonkrong),
one of the most famous shopping centres in Bangkok.
A Duty-Free Shop of Thailand is in the World
Central Plaza on Ratchadamri Road. Tourists can pay for
their items here and collect them at the airport prior to departure
from Thailand. The 7% Value Added Tax will be be refunded on items
purchased in shops labelled ‘VAT refund for tourists’,
where there is a minimum transaction of B2,000.
Tourists are necessary to complete the VAT Refund Application forms at the time
of purchase and passports must be shown. Cash refunds
(minimum B5,000) can be collected in the airport departure hall and
the bought items must also be shown.