If you are like me, every vacation includes shopping. After being back and forth to Spain and living in Madrid for a while now, I know exactly on what to splurge and how to save money while shopping in Madrid. These tips will also work in other cities since most of the stores mentioned are available nationwide. But deets about locations will only cover the Comunidad de Madrid area. Follow this 5 Shopping tips to splurge and save money in Madrid or anywhere else in Spain.
1. Fast Fashion
Fast fashion equals INDITEX and INDITEX’s home country is Spain. Which means that if you are into low priced trendy clothes, Spain could be your favorite destination to do some shopping. And guess what, the biggest Zara of the world is located in Madrid! Zara’s Spanish flagship store is located in Paseo de la Castellana 79, and it’s their biggest retail space so far.
Spain is the home country of Zara’s, Bershka, Mango, Stradivarius, Massimo Dutti, Pull & Bear and many more retail clothing stores. Also, you can find H&Ms, OVS, Primark, Forever 21, and other fast fashion stores.
Madrid’s Gran Via street is populated with multiple flagships stores like Adidas, H&M, and Primark. The most popular being the Primark, which is located in an emblematic cultural building.
Mostly every shopping area has the same clothing stores over and over. My favorite streets to go shopping in Madrid are Orense and Fuencarral. Gran Via can get too crowded and stressful for my taste. And I believe that shopping should be a relaxing/therapeutic experience. Also, they are two cool shopping malls that you can visit from Madrid’s city center by only using the metro: Principe Pío and La Vaguada. Bigger shopping malls can be accessed by bus, my favorites are Gran Plaza 2 and Xanadú. It would take you 45 minutes to an hour to get to them from Madrid city center. It depends on traffic.
2. High-end Makeup and Skincare
One of my all time favorite make up products is the Lancome Teint Idolé Ultra foundation. You can find this foundation for as low as 35 euros in Spain vs. 50 dollars in the US. If you have light skin, then you are very much in luck since you will have many shades to choose the perfect one for your skin tone. If you are tan like me, then I’m sorry, but you will have to miss out on this one.
You would think that since Madrid is the capital of Spain, you will have a full assortment of products. Well, that’s not exactly true. I have medium-olive color skin, and I still have to buy my foundation in the United States and bring it back with me. Just for you to have an idea, Sephora in Madrid only carries 16 Fenty Beauty foundation shades out of the 40 available.
If your skin color shade is not available in Spain, you can still save some money in your beauty routine. High-end brands like for example Lancome, Elizabeth Arden, Clarins, and Estee Lauder makeup and skincare products are less expensive in Spain than in the States.
Regular prices are lower than in the States, imagine how low they can get during Black Friday or rebajas season. Keep an eye on this, and you could save even more money. Just for you to get an idea of how prices can change during sales, during last year Black Friday sales I bought Beauty Blenders as low as 6 euros each.
My favorite store to buy makeup and skincare products online and offline is Druni.
3. Spanish Brands & Products
Ok, this one might be obvious for some of you. But if you are a fan of any Spanish brand buying Spain local products and brands while visiting can save you money. You will be shocked at how cheap some wine bottles could be. You can buy them at local supermarkets or Vinotecas and take them in your checked bags or buy them at the airport and take them to the cabin with you. The only issue you can encounter at the airport is that you don’t find the specific product you were looking for.
For popular brands like Desigual, Tous, Adolfo Dominguez, Bimba y Lola you can find a bigger assortment and significant low prices in Spain. Most of these brands can be found in El Corte Inglés or in their own retail stores.
4. Outlet Stores and Malls
Madrid has some outlet stores located in the city center and outlet shopping malls on the outskirts of the city.
The most popular outlet mall and, in my opinion, the most worthy to visit is Las Rozas Village. This outdoor outlet is located about 45 minutes from the city center and to be honest; it can be a little tricky to get to without a car. You can get there by bus from Moncloa, or combining a Cercanias Train to Las Rozas and then take a taxi to the outlet. The simplest way to get there is to book their shuttle that departs from Plaza de Oriente. It will cost you around 20 euros round trip per person. A taxi from the city center will cost you about 35 euros each way.
The mall itself is unique, is beautifully decorated all year round and it has a terrace with some cool views, perfect for watching the sunset. Some of the most popular stores in this outlet are Bimba y Lola, Pandora, L’Occitane, Polo Ralph Lauren and Carolina Herrera.
In the Madrid city center, you can find random brand’s outlets stores. For example, in Callao Square, there is a huge Desigual store which it’s 5th store is an outlet. You can find past seasons item marked down up to 40%. Also, in Fuencarral 70 there is a Mango which underground floor is an outlet.
5. Non-EU Residents Tax Return
If you live in a country out of the European Union, it’s essential for you to always ask for the tax return receipt. It’s an additional process that needs to be started in the store to be able to claim a tax return in the airport. It takes less than 5 minutes, and you can save up to 15.7% from your purchases. There is a minimum amount that you need to spend in a store to qualify; it’s usually around 91 euros. You don’t need to spend that amount of money at once. You can add up receipts from different dates from the same store to make the minimum amount to qualify for the tax return.
At the store, you will only need to provide personal information like date of birth and passport number. On the day of your departure, you will need to show the receipts and fill out more paperwork. They can also ask you to show random items you bought, just to confirm that you are taking back with you the items purchased.
Have fun shopping!