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Monday, May 04, 2009

Day 18: Seoul (Dongdaemun)

The long weekend was over, he had already gone back to work so I continued my shopping at Dongdaemun.

So far, I think Dongdaemun is the biggest shopping area in Seoul. Besides Migliore and Doota Tower that I visited a few days ago, there are another two buildings with the same concept. One of them is Hello aPM.

Hello aPM

After shopping for almost two weeks, I would like to share a few survival tips on shopping in Seoul. :D

1. Take note of the kiosk number.
If you like an item but not thinking of buying it yet, take note of the kiosk number. It is simply impossible to go back there based on your memory. Every floor is like a maze and the kiosks all look alike. Without the kiosk number, you could go round and round without knowing that you have passed it a few times. I experienced it myself, it took me 6 rounds wasting half a day to find that same kiosk again. :P

2. Know your risk level.
Since most sellers don't allow trying out their clothes, you should know how much risk that you could afford before buying it. If the price is very much higher than your risk level, it is advisable not to get it unless you are pretty sure that it will suit you perfectly.

If you are not sure whether this kind of style will suit you, it's better to try it out in the department store first. By the way, there is no harm to beg the sellers to let you try it on. Some sellers might just let you do it if they are desperate for sales.

3. Make use of the changing room.
Some buildings like Hello aPM and Migliore provide changing room on each floor. So, after you make your payment, take note of the kiosk number and its surroundings carefully and then dash to the changing room. You could quickly try it out and go back to the kiosk again for the exchange.

But exchange is not the solution for everything, the seller usually only let you exchange once and sometimes you might not be able to find other items that you like, so you are still stuck with it.

It is also not a guarantee that all sellers are willing to do exchange, so before buying things on impulse, make sure that you really like the clothes and comfortable in taking the risk. For sale items, exchange is definitely not allowed.

After browsing half a day at Hello aPM, I went up to the food court on the highest floor for my lunch. I just couldn't believe that this place could be so touristy. Once I arrived on that floor, all the touts rushed and shoved their menus to me and followed me everywhere. This had happened in Migliore too, which made me left and had my lunch from the street vendor. But this time, I really wanted to eat proper food, so I ignored them and slowly made my rounds.

Apart from the touts, daejuk bibimbap was yummy.

Dongdaemun Shoes Market
I wasn't interested in shoes at all, both the design and quality were pretty bad. And when I looked at the sole, they were not locally made, but imported from the world's largest factory.

Dongdaemun Shoes Market

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