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Notes on tech

Notes on technology, business, enterpreneurship, economy, markets along with interesting general tidbits.


Silk Market, Beijing

12/19/2005 07:56:00 AM, posted by anand

Over the weekend, I went to check out Beijing's famous silk market. The place was about 10 minutes of walking distance from my hotel in the Guo Mao district. Time for some Indo-Chinese commerce. Yeaah!

The silk market originally was a roadside alley lined with shops selling their wares. Now they have shutdown the roadside shops and replaced it with a fancy mall like building with all the shops relocated inside.

There were 4 levels in the market, jampacked with people. The silk market had a variety of clothes, shoes, leather goods, accessories, nicknacks etc. Almost all of the clothes and shoes being sold were imitations of the real brands. For example all GAP T-shirts, had a "Made in USA" label. Now as any GAP shopper would know that GAP gets most of its clothes manufactured outside of the US. Even the logo was a bit distorted, so you could tell that it was a fake. Other logos were better done.

There were fake shoes - Addidas, Nike, Puma, Diesel, Timberland etc. Fake clothing brands, fake watches, fake everything.

I bought a pair of shoes for my self. Not the fake garish looking sneakers, but a some local brand of casual brown shoes. They quoted me a price of RMB 920, and I bargained like a champ to finally pay RMB 110 for the pair. Yes, thats right almost 8 times less than the quoted price. The bargaining went over for 45 mins. Now that requires some serious mental stamina.

If you plan on being here, just remember: dont fear to bargain and haggle. Heck, while you are at it.... just enjoy the process. Keep smiling. For my shoes when they quoted me price of RMB 920, I just told them that the max I can pay for the shoes is RMB 50 (trying to keep a straight face). Both, the sale guy and I were trying to set new records for ridiculous prices on opposite ends of the price spectrum. I even bought 4 Mont blanc pens. Hehe.

All in all a good experience. It felt nice to know that I hadnt lost my bargaining skills.
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