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Shopping in London

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011, 6:08 am

London is the Mecca of shopping enthusiasts. Thousands of people come to London to buy the things they have been longing for. As a wealthy, metropolitan city, it offers plenty to all shopping types: luxurious to budget, antique to modern, clothes to electronics. This blog post summarizes the things you need to know about shopping in London.

Shopping Areas

Covent Garden, Oxford Street and Bond Street

THERE ARE MANY great places to shop in London, with some areas specializing in particular things.

Covent Garden

Here you can buy the most up-to-the-minute clothes, shoes, jewelry and gifts.

This site collects all the shops Covent Garden offers.

Download this map of Covent Garden shops.

Getting there:
There is a tube station called Covent Garden on Piccadilly Line. There are two other stations you can use: Leicester Square (on Northern Line and Piccadilly Line) or Charing Cross (on Bakerloo or Northern Line)


Oxford Street

Not far from Covent Garden you find Oxford Street, a 1,5 km long street touted as Europe’s busiest shopping street. It is best known for Selfridges and the other big department stores that are all located between Oxford Circus and Marble Arch.

You mostly find here the mid-range brands such as Nike, Foot Locker, H&M, Gap, Mango, Esprit etc.

On this site you can check out all the shops along Oxford Street and also use it as a map on your shopping trip.

Getting there:
You can use 4 metro stops to get to Oxford Street:

  • Tottenham Court Road (Central and Northern Line)
  • Oxford Circus (Bakerloo, Central and Victoria Line)
  • Bond Street (Central, Jubilee Line) and
  • Marble Arch (Central Line)

It is best, however, to use the Oxford Circus or Marble Arch stations.


Bond Street and Knightsbridge

Bond Street and Knightsbridge are for luxurious shopping. All the most expensive big name designer labels and goods have a store on Bond Street. Knightsbridge gives home to the famous Harrods where you can buy the crème de la crème of all products.

Check out the shops on Bond Street’s official website

Getting there:
Three metro stations provide convenient access to Bond Street. It does not make much difference which one you use. The stations are:

  • Bond Street (Central and Jubilee Line)
  • Oxford Circus (Bakerloo, Central, Victoria Line) and
  • Green Park (Jubilee and Piccadilly Line)

Harrods is a short walk from Knightsbridge Station (Piccadilly Line).



LARGE STORES AND many fashion outlets usually have end-of season sales in January and July. In that period you can save enormously on a wide range of items.

London sales calendar


ALMOST ALL SHOPS accept major credit cards. Some also accept personal checks endorsed with guarantee cards. VAT (Value Added Tax) is a considerable amount as it stands at 17.5%. It is always included in the price you see on products. Look for the tax-free shopping signs. These shops will provide you (only non-EU residents) with a Global Refund form for customs. Before you leave any EU country don’t forget to have the form validated.

Consumer Rights

IF THE PRODUCT you buy is faulty or damaged you have the right to have it replaced or repaid. Don’t forget to always keep the receipts so you can return any unsatisfactory items.


London, one of the world’s music capitals, has a few large music stores such as HMV on Piccadilly Circus. These stores offer a huge selection of CDs and DVDs from all over the world. Many specialist, second-hand and collectors’ shops remain quite popular that still sell vinyls.

If you are interested in electronics you should visit Tottenham Court Road.

Art and Antiques

You can find inexpensive art and craft throughout London. Good places to sought out all kinds of antiques are Camden Passage (Islington), Portobello Road, Kensington Church Street and King’s Road (Chelsea).

The major galleries are located around Bond Street and Cork Street. Sotheby’s and Bonhams auction houses are here too.

Shopping Malls

If you are looking for shopping malls instead of the shopping streets in the city center, London offers three huge shopping malls:

Shops close around 8pm. Restaurants and other entertainments stay open later.


Which is your favorite shopping area in London? Tell us in the comments

Photo credits (in order of appearance): andrewarchy (featured photo)

About 8 years ago John

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