When you think about finding a good bargain, the last place you would think of is the land of spam musubi. Honolulu is considered by many to be a tourist trap. The place is swarming with people all around the world. Helk, there’s more tourist than there are locals! So why are luxury goods a better bargain in Hawaii than on the mainland?
For starters, Hawaii has a much lower luxury tax than many states. The tax is about 4.5% which is half of what I pay in San Francisco and New York! This means that if I buy a $3000 bag, the tax is only $135 compared to $255 in New York with a 8.5% tax. With that saving, you can buy yourself a nice pair of shoes!
Another reason why it’s cheaper to buy luxury goods in Hawaii is that the brands lower their prices. I recently bought a Grand Tote from Chanel which was around $2900 before tax. I asked for the same bag in the Alo Moana shopping mall and found that it was $2600 before tax! That’s over 10% of savings solely based on the retail price of the bag! The reason why they tune down the prices is because the stores and the island wants to use this as a selling point to attract more tourist. Well, I’m sold!
Apart from all the money you will save buying LV and Chanel (never thought save money and LV or Chanel would form a sentence), there’s also a lot of stock. Chanel classic bags in white and red sitting on the shelf, LV Speedy in all sizes and patterns, exotic snack and crocodile skin bags were ready for the grabs! The only disappointing store in the mall was Hermes! I was set on getting the H belt and maybe coming across a Birkin or a Kelly but there was NOTHING in the store. Don’t think about any leather goods because all you will find is a skinny belt or a small card holder if you are super lucky.
So if you find time away from the beach, hit up the Waikiki Luxury Row or the Alo Moana mall or some luxury shopping. I’m sure whatever you are looking for, it will be cheaper than home!