Do you take your shopping seriously while you travel?
Would you prefer to just shop one day in your whole trip and then have free time to enjoy the rest of your trip?
Do you only shop bigger brands while you travel?
Would you want to shop more effectively in big villages/outlet malls and still get everything you are looking for?
If you answer a yes for everything above, this one is for you!
Yes, I normally do my branded shopping while I travel but I love to see new places so much that usually I give myself a day or maximum 2 days to get everything in my list, so I am really planned for those 2 days then.
This is exactly how I shopped in Bicester – we were 2 girls, had 5 hours (very less – trust me) and too many brands to be true! Anyone and everyone who goes to UK and loves to shop, knows about this shopping paradise but also knows that one day here can never be enough! So here are a few tips on how to effectively shop at Bicester Village –
1. Know which brands you want to check!
Have a small list in mind of your favourite brands which you can’t miss. Most likely you will like a lot more stuff there and also be happier visiting them. If I forget to go to any of the brands I like – I always regret. So know which brands you just can’t miss and try to finish them at the earliest. Like for me Ted Baker was an absolute must go, so was Furla, Tory Burch and Michael Kors – I genuinely ended up picking most of my shopping from there only. But I also headed to these stores in the beginning.
2. Make a list of absolute necessary things you want to buy.
Yes, window shopping is fun but when you are with friends/people/better half (whoever) you can’t keep window shopping – it can test anyone’s patience plus you don’t have time for that unless that is all you intend to do while you travel. So, know what you absolutely have to get. I usually focus on accessories when I go to outlet malls. This time a wallet, a small party bag, one belt, golden stilettos & a backpack were on my list. I knew I had to pick these things up and it just made it easier to look at the specified places.
3. Have a budget in mind/per brand
Even if you don’t want to keep an overall budget, have a budget in mind per brand. What usually happens at Bicester village (or a lot of outlet malls) is that one or two particular brands might be on crazy sale. Yes, who doesn’t want a good bargain but you shouldn’t end up buying everything from the same brand as well! This I learnt by my own goof up! I went so crazy at Ted Baker that I literally came back with everything from them. Wallets, party bags, belts, backpack you name it – I got Ted Baker! So, if you have a budget per brand in mind you will have to limit your buys from one brand.
4. Try and time yourself in a shop when you enter.
Do not go overboard at one place – you will find something good at every brand! Learning from the lesson above, don’t end up spending all your time at one shop. Keep your options open. The best thing to do is to just have a quick check on your watch when you enter a place and know that you want to be here only for 30 mins. I know it is difficult but try it out – you will see, you end up covering a lot more shops and probably see more variety as well.
5. Keep time for your meals and do enjoy yourself!
Even after the points above, do remember that you are on a vacation and you are shopping for fun! So enjoy yourself, take some time out for your meals – even an ice cream as a break! They have great carts serving gelato’s and even outdoor places which serve yum Asian food. So get the feel of the place. Bicester village is a cute and pretty place as well so do keep your eyes open!
Yes, like any other girl, I love to shop – and I don’t want to spoil the experience for anyone. So don’t think I am over engineering this. It is just a way to make most of your time there. If you are the planning types, these things can be kept in mind whenever you go shop but usually on trips it is like a mission for me which I want to complete 😉
If you are going to London anytime soon, please know there are a lot of ways to get to Bicester village – it is 45 minutes by train, one hour by drive and similar by bus. There are buses which leave every hour and there are even travel companies which give a same day drop and pick up. Thus, multiple ways to get there – but just keep in mind – start early so that you get enough time and space. Bicester does tend to get crowded by afternoon and you really don’t want to get stuck in city traffic in the evening!
Looking forward to hear more tips and tricks from you guys and do tell me if these help you in anyway!