With the wave of the festive season, comes the tide of travel and a change of season. And many of us in Korea want to escape the bite of the icy chill and jet off to some tropical, warm place that will take us away from the dreaded winter. Even if it’s for a few days or weeks a quick escape is a must! So with that said, in this post I want to highlight one of my favorite aspects to holiday planning (apart from the holiday itself), which is shopping till I drop at the duty free!
Seoul offers a variety of duty free shopping options; the leaders in this market though have to be the likes of Lotte and Shilla. Most of us usually don’t have enough time to shop before a flight, but this is a worry no more! As at the heart of the city lies Seoul’s “Mecca of shopping”, Myeongdong! Here, hordes of fashion labels and high end brands from local to international designers line the streets. My focus however is set on Lotte Duty Free, which is located on the 9th and 10th floors of Lotte Department Store. This is by far the biggest (and best) duty free store in Seoul. Here you can find the latest trends in jewelry, cosmetics, accessories, technology and a whole lot more!
Lotte Duty Free comprises of several high end brands such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Tiffany & Co, Salvatore Ferragamo, Gucci and so many others! Amongst these you can also find traditional Korean food items and some great choices of ginseng tea. If Korean make-up and beauty brands such as Etude House, Innis Free, Missha (etc), is what you’re after, then you’re bound to find some great deals on bulk buys!
Some brands also boast seasonal specials. I recall over the summer several watches were discounted along with some fashionable sunglasses and many other items. It’s also important to note that some deals you may find at the store might not be available online.
It’s usually a breeze shopping here; the sales assistants are friendly, proficient in English and are super helpful.
All you need to get going is your passport and plane ticket or flight number and you’re all set to spend your dough! Once your transaction is complete a sales assistant will inform you of where to pick-up your goods. Sometimes pick-up is at the airport duty free pick-up counter. Alternatively your goods may be ready and waiting for collection at your boarding gate before you hop on the plane. Either way both types of collection occur on the day of your flight.
A nice benefit and great service provided by Lotte and Angel In Us Coffee, is that they provide a free drink of your choice from a select menu. All you need is to provide them with a receipt of your purchase/s for the day. Such a sweet gesture! Literally! I must add that a delicious latte does go a long way and helps provide that much needed pit stop.
So now that you’re all set. Passport and ticket in hand make your way to Myeongdong and see what awesomeness awaits!
Directions to Lotte Duty Free (Myeongdong)
-Euljiro 1-ga (Line 2)-Exit 7 or 8.
-Lotte Department Store is connected directly to these exits.
-For the duty free proceed to floors 9 and 10.
Visit Korea powered by Korea Tourism Organisation, provides a helpful list of the duty free stores in Seoul along with directions on how to get there.