Travel enthusiasts, for the most part, are willing to live out of their suitcases in their quest for adventure. One destination that is probably on most travel lists lately is Hong Kong – one of the busiest metropolitan hubs in Asia.
With its larger than life skyscrapers that encompass the city, top-notch transportation, innumerable islands, and street shopping, it’s almost impossible to turn down an opportunity to visit this delightful city.
Although traveling is perceived to be synonymous with relaxation and rejuvenation, it could prove to be stressful due to multiple factors. Especially, making sure that everything required for the trip ahead crammed into a spacious travel bag – with nothing left behind. Always remember, packing too much is a problem – but so is packing too little!
Why a travel bag is essential while traveling? While there are other means of carrying necessities along on a travel vacation such as duffel bags and backpacks, the conventional method of carrying a suitcase along is usually the most sought-after option.
This is because suitcases offer convenience, comfort, and security while providing us with ample storage space. They are easier to pack, re-pack, in most cases our clothes remain wrinkle free and they facilitate the organization of our travel commodities! With that being said, a durable suitcase with generous compartmentalization could make your travel effortless and hassle-free.
When do you require a new travel luggage?
While you do your best to ensure that you’ve packed everything you need in time for your travel, there are a few situations wherein the necessity for a brand new suitcase may arise. Few of them are listed below:
- Theft: Despite best practices to ensure the safety of your travel luggage, an unfortunate series of events might lead to the theft of your suitcase.
- Loss: Engrossed in the beauty of the exotic location around you, you might lose track of your travel suitcase and misplace it along with your journey.
- Lack of space: Souvenirs and impulsive shopping might get out of hand sometimes, creating the requirement for additional storage space.
- Wear and tear/damage/breakage: Poor quality, damage to your luggage at the airport or exhaustive usage of your suitcase could lead to the redundancy of your current suitcase.
What to look for when buying a suitcase in Hong Kong? When looking for a suitcase, there are multiple features or aspects that could be taken into consideration such as weight and material. Quality and material of a suitcase translate to its durability and overall performance. A few of the features to keep in mind while deciding upon a new travel suitcase are listed below:
Normally speaking, the weight of a standard medium sized suitcase is 12 pounds. Keep in mind the weight of your travel necessities and airport luggage limits/restrictions and ensure your suitcase doesn’t end up being bulky or difficult to carry.
The standard dimensions for a suitcase are 22″ x 14″ x 9″ (Length x Width x Height). This suitcase is the ideal size that fits into the overhead compartment on most popular airlines. If you’re looking for something bigger, it’s suggested that airline restrictions are given a thought.
If you’re looking to organize your luggage, you might want to look for a suitcase that helps you compartmentalize your commodities by providing you with ample pockets, segregation, and zips. This ensures less clutter and a hassle-free travel experience.
Double checking quality of the zips on the suitcase you’re purchasing can go a long way. Ensure the quality of the zips happens to be top notch. Broken zips while traveling could turn out to be extremely unpleasant and cumbersome. Also, the more zips and pockets, the better.
If your suitcase doesn’t come with a security system/number coded lock – it’s advisable to check and see if the suitcase is feasible / has the required facility to install an external lock/security system.
This feature is optional – yet advisable. It’s always a better idea to be prepared with waterproof luggage than spend your time in Hong Kong checking climatic reports before heading out with it.
Depending upon the weight of the products inside it, it’s a convenient option to opt for trolley suitcases which can easily be dragged from one spot to another with the use of a handle and wheels.
How to buy a travel bag in Hong Kong?
While in Hong Kong, there are a lot of factors that need to be taken into consideration to ensure you end up at the right place, at the right time to purchase a suitcase with the right quality and within the right budget. To begin with, listed below are some pointers that will guide you with getting a hang of this vast city and understanding the market of our interest:
Finding the right shop
The first step towards buying a suitcase in Hong Kong is to develop an understanding of the product that you’re looking for. In this case, a suitcase. This paves the way to finding the right shopping area in a tourist destination like Hong Kong.
With help from the internet, after keying in your requirements, you’ll learn about shopping areas such as Mong Kok, Jordan, Stanley market, Causeway Bay and Fai Yuen which will serve your purpose. The next and final step would be to identify the distance between your current location and the shortlisted shopping areas with the help of Google Maps.
For those tourists without access to the internet, local guides, natives, and Hong Kong Maps/travel guides will provide to be of quick assistance.
Understanding the currency
It is imperative to pre-determine a travel budget for your trip to Hong Kong. Preparing a budget needs to be carefully done while taking into consideration the exchange value of the currency you have at hand when converted to Hong Kong Dollars.
If resources permit, it’s also advisable to skim through the cost of living and market prices for common commodities in Hong Kong. This activity would help facilitate a deeper understanding of the expenses you might incur on the trip and to analyze the trip budget in a more efficient manner. Gaining knowledge of the cost of living in Hong Kong will ensure that you, as a consumer are fully aware of your market and are not putting yourself at the risk of getting cheated.
There are five popular places to exchange your currency in Hong Kong:
- Airport Terminals
- Local Money Changers
To ensure you’re obtaining the best exchange rate in Hong Kong, you could compare the rates mentioned by multiple vendors before zeroing in on a particular institution to facilitate the exchange of your currency.
Some popular tips would be to indulge in haggling of the exchange rates offered, understand if you’re being charged an extra fee in the name of commission or exchange fee and to be aware of your currency’s worth in comparison to Hong Kong Dollars.
While working hours vary depending upon the shops and the shopping areas in question, the normal opening and closing time for shopping in Hong Kong is from 10:00 AM to 07:00 PM. Most shops are closed on Sundays and Public Holidays. It’s advisable to make inquiries about the working hours of specific stores prior to traveling the distance.
The official languages of Hong Kong are Chinese and English. Although, Hong Kongers specifically speak a southern dialect of Chinese called Cantonese. Cantonese is the local language which is predominantly used in Guangdong China and across multiple Chinatowns world over.
There are multiple Cantonese Phrasebooks and 101 videos over the internet which will help tourists become more familiar with imminent phrases in Cantonese.
A few pointers to remember as somebody who is familiarizing themselves with Cantonese is to:
- Focus on just speaking the language as opposed to reading and writing it Asa tourist, verbal communication with localities is what will help you get around the place
- Experiment with the words and phrases you hear around you You don’t always need to get the words right – native speakers will be able to grasp the meaning of the message you’re trying to convey. Feel free to ask them to help you out with specific words / correct your phrases. There’s nothing to be shy about!
- Always carry a pocket dictionary/translator with you – it’s always convenient to pick up words and learn on the go. 4. Associate words and sounds from the language with something that sounds similar or is more familiar to you This way, you’re bound to remember better.
Best Brands to buy a suitcase in Hong Kong
A few popular brands for a suitcase in Hong Kong are Elle, Delsey, Samsonite, Rimowa and American Tourister. The prices for suitcases range from 500 HKD and go on up to 8000 HKD and above.
Although, various factors such as price, compartments, capacity, weight make a difference in the price of these suitcases – not to mention the brand. While a well-established brand is reassuring of quality, a lot of suitcases with local branding are offered in Hong Kong shopping areas which are deserving of consideration.
Being observant and inspecting the quality of the suitcase on the spot could prove a local brand to be worth your while. It has also been noted that some shop, particularly in elite areas and shopping malls or complexes tend to add to the price of commodities to cover their overhead costs.
It’s usually advisable to develop an understanding of the going market rate of a suitcase in Hong Kong before proceeding to seal the deal at a store.
Streets to buy a suitcase in Hong Kong
Amidst various shopping spots, certain areas stand out when you’re looking to buy a travel bag in Hong Kong. These streets include but are not limited to the following:
- Li Yuen Street East
- Li Yuen Street West
- PeiHo Street Market
- Sham Shui Po
- Tai Po Markets
To ensure you’re getting the best deal, while street shopping, it’s okay to haggle with the vendors in an attempt to receive a lower offer price. Inspect the suitcase to ensure that you’re receiving one of fair quality – one that’s in mint condition.
Compare price quotations that you’ve received from other vendors and pay attention to the prices that are being offered to other consumers in the market. This will help ascertain a certain base price for most models. Go with your instinct and attempt to haggle with the vendors to obtain the best offer price for a suitcase in Hong Kong.
While traveling in Hong Kong, if the need to purchase a new suitcase arises – there are multiple things to keep in mind before sealing the deal at a local luggage store in Hong Kong.
First, the budget for the suitcase in question is to be assigned. Post which, shopping areas such as Mong Kok, Jordan, Stanley market, Causeway Bay and Fai Yuen can be identified with the help of a local tourist guide, a tourist handbook, Hong Kong natives or the internet.
A few popular luggage brands in Hong Kong are Elle, Delsey luggage, Rimowa, Samsonite outlet, Sogo luggage and American Tourister. The prices for suitcases range from 500 HKD and go on up to 8000 HKD.
While heading out shopping for a suitcase in Hong Kong, another thing to keep in mind is the normal opening and closing time for stores in Hong Kong. Stores usually run from 10:00 AM to 07:00 PM. Note that most shops are closed on Sundays and Public Holidays.
It’s usually advisable to develop an understanding of the going market rate of a suitcase in Hong Kong before proceeding to seal the deal at a store to avoid overhead costs and any additional taxes/fees.
Buying a suitcase in Hong Kong could prove to be either trivial or effortless, depending upon the amount of preparedness on behalf of the tourist.