There are countless of places to shop in Bangkok. Bangkok, and the rest of Thailand for that matter, is a shopping haven. Thailand is a growing manufacturing country and it shouldn’t have surprised me to learn that many things in this country are cheap, even compared to other Southeast Asian countries, like the Philippines. Here is my guide to budget shopping in Bangkok. Read on especially if you love vintage clothes like me.
Chatuchak Weekend Market
What I loved to buy here: Cute phone cases (100baht near the entrance), home decor, house wares, glass jars, canvass bags, fast fashion, and (the reason why Chatuchak is my first stop in Bangkok) vintage jewelry at Apisitique Vintage. I also loved McDonald’s Iced Ovaltine and the buttery waffles my sister bought at the train station. If you’re looking for ukay-ukay style of shopping in Chatuchak, the nearest thing I saw were two shops selling reworked vintage clothes. The clothes were priced at 200THB each.
How to get there: From Sala Daeng train station, we rode to and changed trains at Siam station, then got off at Mo Chit station. From Mo Chit, we walked to the right and followed most people to Chatuchak. From Sala Daeng, it’s 48baht one-way to Mo Chit.
Patpong Day Market
What I loved to buy here: Ready-to-eat food! What we discovered was, the Patpong Market (selling fake bags, shirts, sunglasses, wooden penises, and pingpong shows), convert to a food market in the early morning. Many kinds of food were sold here, not just Thai, to cater to workers who use the Sala Daeng and Silom stations to get to where. (Patpong is near both stations).
How to get there: The Patpong Market is underneath the Sala Daeng train station. The food market is open from about 7AM to 9AM because that’s the time most people go to work. In the evening, the market converts to the red light district it is more famous for.
What I loved to buy here: fast fashion. While there are many more selection of trendy clothes in Chatuchak, what I loved about the Bangrak Bazaar is its limited selection, which makes buying easier. There is a stall for almost all fashion-related need — white tops, little black dresses, formal wear, trendy tops, shirts, cute glasses, underwear, and footwear. There were also a couple of stalls selling accessories. I bought 2 pairs of boxers with cute prints for my teenager nephew here for 100 baht.
How to get there: Ride the train to Saphan Thaksin station. Get down the Shangri-la Hotel exit and walk towards the Shangri-la Hotel. The bazaar is a great place to complete your Chao Phraya river cruise experience.
Yaowarat Road, Chinatown
What I loved to buy here: all sorts of things. But truly, you can buy dried fruits and nuts in cheaper prices here. I also saw many fabrics (one store selling only lace fabric), wedding invitations, and wedding souvenirs. Before Yaowarat Rd ends, we found someone on the street selling sex toys (vibrator for girls is 500baht) and another one selling vintage and used cameras. Also, if you’re interested in Bangkok gold, you can choose from the many shops along Yaowarat.
How to get there: From the Hua Lumphong train station, walk the whole of Yaowarat. It is heavy traffic in Chinatown especially during 5PM-7PM, and we found it difficult to hail Grab.
Old Siam Complex
What I loved to buy here: Vintage clothes! It was totally unexpected to find vintage clothes in this complex, but I loved it. The vintage clothes were priced at 200baht per dress. I was hoping to find ukay-ukay style shopping in this part of Bangkok but I didn’t. The vintage clothes stall came near though. You can also find jewelry and formal and modest clothes here. At one side of the complex is a food bazaar, and I almost fell because I was not minding the floor while photographing the cute desserts. There was also a Watsons and a school supplies store inside the complex.
How to get there: Walk from Yaowarat Rd. or take a taxi. This complex is far and is visited mostly by locals. From the complex to our hostel near Hua Lumphong station, we paid 55baht for Grab.