How to Shop Efficiently in Florence – The Essential Guide

Florence is the part of Italy, which shouldn’t be missed. The name of this city means “blooming”, which follows that spring never leaves this cozy and beautiful place.

Florence may boast a great number of sights to explore, but in addition to the variety of city tours you may also enjoy a great shopping there. A huge number of shops, malls, outlets and boutiques will offer you the variety of goods you might only dream of. So, if you are going to include shopping into your entertainment program in Florence, use the tips below to make it really efficient!

SALES IN FLORENCE
– Summer sales start in the beginning of July
– Winter sales start in the beginning of January

These sales are regulated, and therefore they always start on time and last until the determined period.
In the season of discounts the prices for such “luxury” brands as, for example, Armani or Prada are reduced by 30-70%. Discounts are applied to all kinds of shops in Italy: on shopping streets, in the outlets and shopping malls.

SHOPS’ OPENING HOURS

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- Most shops and shopping centers in Florence are open between 08:00 and 19:30, with a lunch time from 13:00 till 15:00.
– Many shops are operating in 2 shifts: in the morning from 9:00 till 13:00; in the evening from 16:00 till 20:00.
– On Sunday morning many shops are closed or get opened during the second shift.
– On Mondays many shops in Florence are open only during the second shift.
– Outlets are usually open from 10:00 till 20:00.

FLORENCE SHOPPING PECULIARITIES
– In Florence, according to the Italian laws, you may get a VAT refunded – usually up to 12-15%. To be eligible for the refund you need to make at least €150-€160-worth purchase at a store.

Along with that you need to have a passport or at least a copy of the first page of the passport with you. A shop assistant will complete the Tax Free form, which should be provided along with the receipt and the purchase itself at the customs office. The shops that provide Tax Free purchase system inform about it on the shop windows.

– Due to the rush of customers during the weekends new clothes are delivered to most of the outlets on Fridays.  Respectively, on Wednesday and Thursday there’s the smallest range of goods.

THE MAJOR SHOPPING STREETS

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At Via dei Tornabuoni Street Italian glamor is presented by such names as Gucci, Versace, Salvatore Ferragamo, Armani, Roberto Cavalli, Prada and Bulgary. Along with that you will find there such stores as Cartier, Damiani, Tiffany & Co and Rolex.
At Via della Vigna Nuova Street the stores of Valentino, Lacoste, Pucci, Versus, Chopard, La Perla and Iceberg are located. Also there are many antique shops and furniture showrooms.
At Via Cerretani Street there are lots of souvenir shops.
At Via del Corso fashionists should pay a visit to Quintessence. Those who are looking for a new pair of jeans may check out the stores of Patrizia Pepe, DKNY, Diesel and others. The fans of knitwear and those who need practical basics won’t be disappointed with a collection of Sarah store.
At Via Roma Street there are shops of youth brands.

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One of the most alluring places in Florence among the lovers of jewelry is a shopping mall, located on the Ponte Vecchio Bridge. The Goldsmiths settled on the bridge back in the XVI century: they opened their workshops there and sell their produce.

OUTLETS
Basically all the outlets are located in the suburbs of Florence, so the best option for getting there would be car rental. Besides, you may get a cheap rental car right in the city and it will be much more cost-effective than taking a taxi ride.

Barberino Designer is located 30 km away from Florence, in the town of Barberino. You may buy there electronics and appliances, clothes and shoes, various accessories and jewelry, perfumery and cosmetics.
Designer clothes of the most famous brands are represented in Sotto outlet.

The Mall is a huge outlet of luxury brands located within one-hour drive from Florence, in the town of Leccio. It is perfectly suitable for those who are looking for luxury shops of the leading brands like Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Fendi, Emanuele Ungaro, Dior, Bottega Veneta, Gucci, Ermenegilgo Zegna, Stella McCartney, Giorgio Armani, La Perla, Valentino, Sergio Rossi, Salvatore Ferragamo and Hogan. At the mall you can buy high-quality fashionable clothing, shoes, jewelry, accessories, perfumes and household supplies.

At Valdichiana Outlet you may also purchase brand clothing.

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If you are interested in purchasing Prada goods, then visit Prada Outlet, which is located 60-80 km to the south-east of Florence.

MARKETS
In the markets of Florence you can easily find unusual souvenirs, interesting gifts for relatives and friends, as well as various goodies.
Next to the Basilica of San Lorenzo there is a large market with clothing, footwear and leather goods. It is closed on Sundays and Mondays.

Another large and favored city market is located near dei Ciompi square. You may find everything there: paintings, old coins, jewelry, furniture, statuettes, etc.
The market near delle Cascine Park is open only on Tuesdays, and you may find there leather goods, garments and provisions.

Shopping in Florence is an incredibly exciting activity and it is impossible to leave the city without purchases. And no matter what kind of things you’ll buy – any way, they will keep a piece of Italian sun and will always remind you of the unforgettable journey!

Author Bio: Lily Berns likes to provide readers with useful info regarding their travels. She tries to give useful tips based on personal experience of visiting the cities, for the readers to choose the best of them. For the very best deals on renting a car for your trip she recommends rentalcars24h.com