Electronics, Hong Kong
Another popular question in the forum: Prices of Digital Camera. Is it cheaper to buy in Hong Kong? Well, generally speaking, Hong Kong impose lower import tax, so most imported goods are cheaper than in mainland China and some other Asia countries. While most electronic prices are far cheaper than in Europe, you may found cheaper computer & camera stuff in USA, especially new models.
What to pay: Here are the websites of 2 established Hong Kong electronics shops, where you can check prices:
Many people asked this question in the forum, where to buy computer stuff in Hong Kong. Here you go...
1. Golden Computer Shopping Center. MTR Shamshuipo Station D2 Exit.
2. Wanchai Computer City. MTR Wanchai Station A4 Exit, just above McDonalds.
3. Mongkok Computer Center. MTR Mongkok Station E2 Exit.
4. 298 Computer Mall, 298 Hennessy Road. 10 mins walk from either Wanchai or Causeway Bay MTR Station.
5. 10-12/F, Windsor House, MTR Causeway Bay Station E Exit. (take the office lift to go up)
This shop is dedicated pretty much to photography. I did a lot of research on the internet before I went to Hong Kong, and it comes highly recommended by everyone who's been there, both locals and tourists. I was very impressed and had good service from 'Simon Tang', although I'm sure the other staff are just as good.
Everything in the shop has prices on (and are good value too), with no haggling - I did try! The number of locals you see buying stuff in the shop is also a very good sign.
What to buy: Cameras, Lenses, Memory Cards and almost anything photographic.
What to pay: Considerably less than in the UK. But do your research. Note down local prices before you go.
Sai Yee Street, Fa Yuen Street and Sai Yeung Choi Street, is where you will find nothing but audio/visual equipment stores. The choices are wide and the prices are better, however be mindful of scams.
Getting there :
Take the MTR to MongKok Station and head for the Bank Centre exit to get to Sai Yeung Choi Street or Take the MTR to Prince Edward Station and head for the MongKok Police Station exit or exit B1 or B2 to get to Yuen Po Street.
As a film maker and photographer I work with cameras. I had decided to look into picking up some L series pro lenses for my Canon Digital SLR and a broadcast quality Canon XL1s mini dv camera for documentary making. I had other things to do in Hong Kong so I left my shopping to the very last day of my trip. Armed with the knowledge that the electronics dealers on Nathan Road are plentiful but reputed to sting tourists when they get the chance, I wandered around everywhere but Nathan Road. In the parallel streets and off-streets of that general area there are many electronics shops with prices varying wildly for the same items. In one place I couldn't pass on the offer of a Sony MiniDisc Recorder for the equivalent of €80. I'd bought an identical one just the previous month in Ireland for over €200.
As far as the lenses were concerned, I found prices which were cheaper than Ireland - but not that much cheaper for the professional items. As the evening drew in I decided not to waste further time on the lenses and to go flat out to find the video camera instead. In all the places I searched the didn't have it. Disappointed I set off for the hotel. My course led me down Nathan Road. As I passed the shopfronts of the many electronics stores there I stopped dead in my tracks. Staring out the window at me was the very camera.
What to buy: Camera equipment. The Canon XL1s was retailing in Ireland for €5,000. There, on Nathan Road, I bought the exact same camera for about €2,300. I was petrified in case I would hand over money only to find that it didn't work later. My fears were unfounded. That was over a year ago and the camera has more than paid for itself in that time and continues to function as well as ever. I did have to buy the shoulder rest separately only to find out in reading the packaging list later, that it was meant to be included but, at the end of the day, it was an extra €60 which, on the scale of things, was negligible.
One word of advise - make sure that any video camera you buy is the correct standard for the country you are living in. Hong Kong sells both PAL and NTSC. In Europe we use PAL.
What to buy:
Okay I hate the Coporate world but at the same time i hate being ripped off by people.
NEVER EVER buy electroncis from the small shops in Tsim Shai Tsai . Go into Harbour city and buy them from Fortress or any other large store. It'll be much cheaper and your not hassled the second you walk in!!!
This is a very good tip. TRUST me.
If you're new to the skill of haggling, then see what you can learn on the internet, as it would require a thesis to explain. This is probably THE place where you can fine tune your haggling skills. If you don't speak Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese), then don't worry. You might see a calculator being passed back and forth, as the universal language is going to be either the Hong Kong dollar or the RMB (mainland China).
Another tip: Provided you walked away from one vendor and you still want that knock-off or whatever it is, then here's what you can do. Say for example that in your last haggling, the lowest the guy would go is 35, and 30 was your 'target price'. Before you go to the next vendor, put exactly 30 in one pocket all by itself. This way, when you're saying 25-28, and the vendor is down to 35, pull out the 30 (rolled up so you can't tell it's 30 when you pull it out) as if to empty that pocket. It would even help if you pretended to search the other pocket and found nothing in it, too! It's a trick to show you're willing to pay more, but that's your "obvious" limit because that's all you've got. Just make sure you don't have money sticking out of other pockets! Now go out there and have fun!!
What to buy: Prices for fake rolexes may start at 90 $US and since I bought 2, I got him down to 20 $US. If you offer to buy multiples, you should be able to get a better deal, too! Just as in car dealerships, walk away and you'll easily find yourself another person selling the same thing. Practice makes perfect.
At night, maybe starting around 9pm, you'll see tables set up on some streets adjacent to the Sheraton Hotel. You can haggle if you buy multiple fake (copy) Polo shirts, fake Oakleys, and so on.
At 12 midnight, the tables are all folded up as if it's against the law to be on the street past that time, so watch the time closely. Spend the time to watch what others pay and you might be able to 'jump in' and pay the same price on someone else's haggle!
What to pay: It's about $3 US for a copy Polo shirt, maybe ~$7 for fake Oakleys.
What to buy:
Apliu street must be the most concentrated cell phone shops street in HK.
Actually, it is an open air market selling all sorts of stuff, especially second hand cell phones or cell phones accessories. The streets along the market are full of cell phones shops.
What to pay: Usually, you would find 2 prices for the same model of cell phone. One would be the standard price of a cell phone, sold through the wholesaler of a brand and thus comes with an international guaranty, making the price higher than the other kind.
The other price is cheaper because cell phones are bought in from other countries and has only guaranty from the shop where you bought it.
When buying computers in Hong Kong there is only really one place that has it all.
The Golden Compute Centre in Sham Shui Po.
Use exit D2 of the Sham Shui Po MTR station and walk forward about 50m. The 1st floor is the main area and there is a narrow staircase up to this level. The ground floor and basesment have software and consumable shops but you need to go upstairs for the hardware.
There are number of other computer centres in Hong Kong such as those in Wan Chai or Star house or you have the Fortress and PCCW stores however when you ask for anything specific they will always refer you to Sham Shui Po.
What to pay: Less than normal.
Stanley Street is one of many places to go for electronics in Hong Kong, or more importantly, a new camera. The street is packed with electronc store, after electonic store, advertising the big names like Kodak, Nikon, Fuji, and Sony. It is possible to find a bargain, but dont expect many of them to be advertised. Like most places in Asia, you have to ask about the price of something first, and the price they give you is ussually higher then what they will sell it for.
When is comes to electronics, make sure you have an idea of what the average going price is on something before trying to shop for it in Hong Kong. Most of the time you can get them cheaper here, but only if you know how much something should be.
i have been to most of the south east asia and china. Due to the peers, i had a myth too that singapore market is cheap. but coming over to HK, i realized, so long i had been sleeping.
i bought canon EOS350D for 7800HKD from broadway, timesquare in causeway bay area. Advantage i got purchasing from broadway was 1 kit bag, 1 gig SD Card, tripod stand and a extra battery along with international warranty of 1 year and 2 years local warranty if within HK. i mean this was worth a deal against SGP market or in Shenzhen market. In shenzhen, wherein i live at presently, i was getting only lens and the body for 6330 Yuan. but the warranty was only for China mainland. i mean at any time 7800 HKD deal was much better. in Sgp Sim Lim plaza i was getting whole kit for around 2700 SGP dollar...i mean thats a fortune when i compare to the deal i got in HK.
What to buy: 1. www.tincheungcamera.com.hk - is a genuine shop, pretty good infact, person knows camera stuff pretty cool and proffesionals seldom drop in here to do thier local purchases.
2. broadway - http://www.ibroadway.com.hk/ this is where i purchased my camera. as said, there are always offers going on. i mean, if you are a sensible buyer, you wont paying 100 HKD more and getting more like i got...along with camera, i got kit bag, 1 gig mem card, extra battery and a tripod stand too... you can try your luck in trying out bargaining, if salesman is really cool, you might just be lucky...so dont shy from asking for favours ;)
3. fortress - http://www.fortress.com.hk/en/home.html Similar to broadway, but its more professional shop... offers like i got in broadway are very limited in fortress. when i purchased from broadway, fortress wasnt offering any. :( hence i selected broadway
4. Wing Shing - Wing Shing Photo Supplies (MAP)
57, Sai Yeung Choi St.
Mong Kok, Hong Kong
TEL: (852) 2396-6886/6961
FAX: (852) 2856-3977
Prices here are 10 percent below market prices, if u want polite and kind salesman, ask for SImon Tang.
What to pay: so as i said, try your luck. try to bargain. if salesman is cool..u might get lowered prices.
Electronic shops in Kowloon on Nathan Rd. and other near-by streets offer a variety of products. I have been buying electronic products in Hong Kong for more than 20 years, and I suggest the following:
1. Before going to HK, check the various products/models in your country's stores, examine their manuals (even use them and return them, if posiible) and decide on at least a couple of models you like.. Also, check their prices on the Internet for these products/models that you like, and keep in mind that prices for the SAME model/product vary depending on the country in which the product was manufactured.
2. In HK, before shopping at small street shops, first check the prices of models you examined in your country at much larger stores; they are generally fixed and lower than the prices of small street shops. Never buy products if you do not know their prices in your country, unless you are willing to risk paying more.
3. If you consider buying a product/model you had not shopped for back home, keep in mind that the best source of information about a product is the product's manual (make sure it is the correct manual), not what you hear, so it is important that you spend time at the shop reading the manuals before buying and signing off any papers (agreement).
4. Make sure you buy the EXACT product you have examined or shopped with ALL its parts/accessories described in the manual, and it is compatible with your country's system (PAL, NTSC). (Friends have bought products such as cell phones that did not work in their country).
What to buy: If you happen to find a product at a lower price, ask yourself if the lower price is worth the following : (a) not being able to return or exchange it, (b) the possibility that the product will not operate properly in your country, (c) warranty might not be valid in your country, (d) repair facilities or parts might not be available, if model is not popular, (e) inability to purchase extended service warranty. I have had my camcorder that I purchased in HK repaired in Bangkok several times, where the can get parts and repair costs are cheaper.
Sun Tek has proven to be a trustworthy source of cameras, cellphones, and other electronic stuff over the years. Their salespeople speak english well and are very accommodating especially to clueless buyers like me :-0. Look for Tony Mak.
What to buy: Film, digital, movie cameras are all cheaper in Hong Kong if you know where to buy.
What to pay: anywhere from 100-2000USD depending on what kind of camera you're buying
Unlike other commercial stores, this one gives big discounts on electrical goods and lots and lots of freebies (mini carpet, key rings, spare battery&earphones for mobiles etc)
I bought my Sharp phone there and I've saved around 20-30%!
Friendly and helpful staff. If you be extra nice and charming, they may give u huge discounts!
What to buy: Top range of mobile phones, PDA, MP3, Plasma, LCD, D.camara etc
What to pay: Best to shop around first ;)
Broadway is an electronic shop chain which also sells digital camera.
I am told by friends that this shop is pretty reliable.
If I am not mistaken, there are two Broadway shops in the Time Square located at different floors. I bought my digital camera at the Broadway store in ShaTin.
What to buy: electronics, digital camera
What to pay: good price