20th February 2018

Your Guide to Duty-Free Shopping

The difference between travelling alone and with someone, perhaps a significant other, becomes most pronounced when you have to consider all the other aspects which come into play, such as the type of accommodation you’ll be willing to settle for in some cases, and where and what you eat. Basically it becomes more expensive when you’re no longer travelling alone and you have someone else to consider as part of your travel plans. Yes, I’m talking about travelling with a lady.

As much as the ladies who are also eleutheromaniacs themselves at first will claim to be okay with some of the “make-do” elements of budget travel, when it comes down to it the budget travel issues become a bit of a problem.

That’s all part of a discussion for another day I guess, otherwise that leads me to one of the most popular travel pastimes of women – a pastime which transcends travelling though, which is that of shopping. I mean absolutely no offence to anyone (I love all my female readers just as much, if not more), but for some reason women seem to have it in their heads that no trip is complete without a bit of shopping, or ideally a lot of shopping!

It would otherwise be unsustainable to particularly buy what they like to refer to as souvenirs if those and many other items weren’t bought at the duty-free malls you find at just about all airports, so it’s worth discussing a few pointers about duty-free shopping to help you get the most out of it.

It’s for personal shopping

By this I really mean duty free shopping is not meant for commercial shopping. You won’t really be able to buy the items which are made available to you duty-free at commercial quantities as there are restrictions put in place at the port of entry back in your home country. As to whether those restrictions are enforced or not and just how strictly they’re enforced is perhaps subjective, but in most cases duty-free items are meant for personal use or perhaps to be bought as gifts for one or two other people who are close to you in that way.

You won’t be able to stock up on twenty crates of a specific popular fragrance for example and then cross the border with them to sell. That’s pretty much what neutralises the duty-free shopping advantage, at least in my book since I don’t quite care for many of the items typically sold duty-free.

Make sure to get the full value-saving advantage

At the end of a duty-free shopping experience if you haven’t taken full advantage of the intended concept of duty-free shopping you may end up walking away having actually spent more. To prevent this from happening you have to watch the quantities you buy (you’ll end up having to pay import duties on any excess beyond your personal duty-free allowance), something which often befalls travellers.

Additionally, make sure not to go over your baggage limit with all the extra weight you’ll inevitably have to carry as a result of your duty-free shopping spree. Excess baggage charges are not a clever way to have to spend more money you could have otherwise used for your trip.