Buying a camera in Hong Kong is probably one of the city’s most popular tourist past times. Unfortunately, while the city still talks a good game when it comes to cheap shopping in reality low prices have, for the most part disappeared.
Is it still possible to get a bargain in Hong Kong?
Absolutely, but the bargains aren’t as deep or as easy to find as they once were.
Whether buying a camera in Hong Kong is cheaper will depend on two things; what sort of camera you want to buy and where you’ve come from.
If you’re coming from the US, you’re going to struggle to find great value in Hong Kong, and while prices are competitive against your local main street store they generally can’t beat online retailer prices – especially deals. Travelling from Europe you’ll find better news with cameras noticeably, although not substantially cheaper than high street and online retailers.
Much will also depend on the type of camera you want to buy. Those looking to buy a typical cheapish digital camera are likely to find prices very similar to at home. There is very little room to discount on these products.
Hong Kong does have some very cheap, knock off digital cameras that you’ll pay no more than a handful of dollars for – think Nicon and Pentaz. The catch is they’re unlikely to last more than a few months.
The best value is in truly top end cameras. There is a thriving market for these pricey cameras, lenses and other accessories and the competition keeps prices keen and there are significant savings to be made.
Where to buy cheap cameras?
Seasoned bargain hunters will always recommend Hong Kong’s independent camera stores. Some have been trading for decades and are complete experts in high end photography and the gadgetry that goes along with it.
However, unless you are a camera expert, there are some caveats. Scams and cons while not widespread in Hong Kong do happen and they happen more frequently with camera purchases.
Hong Kong’s independent camera shops are not, as a rule, a good place to seek advice on purchases as you’re likely to have the stock the seller wants to shift recommend rather than the camera you want.
To get a good deal you need to have done your research and know what you want. Make sure you find out which camera you want and research the price both in your home country and in reputable chain stores in Hong Kong like Broadway and Fortress. This will put you in a good place to negotiate a sensible price.
Stanley Street on Hong Kong Island has a number of well regarded independent, camera shops while Tung Cheung Camera ( Shop 301, 3/F, 18 Hanoi Road, Tsim Sha Tsui) is regularly lauded for its selection and service.Tips on buying a cheap camera in Hong Kong – warranties and T&Cs The top tip is as above; do your research thoroughly, especially on price. This is the only way to secure a bargain price.
Remember, if you’re buying an electronic product in Hong Kong it’s unlikely that the manufactures warranty will be valid in your home country. If you have a problem or a fault, you’ll likely be on your own.
Some products won’t even have a warranty in Hong Kong. Many of the products sold in Hong Kong are not direct stocked from the manufacturer. Known as parallel or grey imports these products don’t have any warranty or manufacturer support.