Monday, August 15, 2016

Frustrations of shopping in a foreign country

This is Mike...
We had to do some back to school shopping and a Price Smart (Costco) food run. We decided to combine all the major shopping in one outing as we had to rent a car to drive into Managua. Some of the problems new arrivals have in buying items is what is a good price and who has what you are looking for? For us, we have heard so many positive things about the shopping spots in Managua that we could hardly wait to go shopping. Early on, in our shopping excursion, reality set in that the selection was just OK and the prices were more expensive than back in the U.S. Elise kept saying, "It is difficult to shop when you aren't sure where to go."
   We started out at Sinsa hardware store for some household and school supplies but realized they didn't have everything we needed on our back to school supply list. We then headed to Galerias Santo Domingo Mall to buy the girls school clothes only to realize it was an exclusive mall with prices to match. It  was frustrating seeing kid's shirts selling for $20 that cost $6 back in the U.S. Don't get me wrong, I know it's a different country and their tariffs are different, but we felt the prices were still too expensive. Still we had to buy clothes and after jumping through the hoops of not having our sizes or styles we managed to walk away with some of the items on our list.  Funny enough, we ran into a mom from the girl's school at the mall and she recommended going to Metro Centro Mall for better prices and selection. We drove to the Metro Centro Mall and quickly realized it was only marginally better than what we already saw.

   Learning where to shop and what is a fair price is an important task to learn anywhere. We know the oriental market would have been good as well, but were unsure about driving in that area of town without the knowledge of a local on our first run. One day we will get the shopping down, until then we have to settle with higher prices and making due with what we can find.
Clean modern mall

We were uncrowded at the Galeria Mall.

Looks like this mall could be anywhere in the world.

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