Shopping on a Tight Budget:Tips

Shopping in Kenya?Not sure of what and where to shop?Find tips…

Shopping in Kenya:Is it Necessary

Kenya is a great country.Its only through shopping for some items that can remind  one of the different places visited.

Shopping on a tight budget

Many people  long to have trendy clothes at minimal cost. This is best demonstrated by the number of persons that walk in the streets of Nairobi with clothes that are linked with  particular celebrities.

To care for this need among its populace, the cooperative movement in Kenya has gone an extra mile by allowing SACCOs (Investment societies set up in accordance with the Cooperative Act of Kenya) to offer their members development loan. Some of the Sacco chairmen that I interacted with mentioned that some of their members are taking up these loans  to indulge in some shopping craze.

This is a very gloom picture for the country especially in a scenario where the public is diverting funds they could use for investment into shopping for clothing. It similar to what the Bible says of the man who ate the seed that he was meant to sow.

Wherever I see such scenarios I never fail to ask myself, “what is the motivation behind spending a lot of money on their shopping?”, “Is it for status quo?”

So far I haven’t gotten the answer to this, may be you the reader can help me and others like me to understand this trend.

In the meantime, I feel that there is still a way someone can “dress to kill” on a minimum budget.


In Kenya, there are various places one can go for shopping and still be able to save some cash.

How to shop on a tight budget

Below are tips that you the reader can employ while shopping on a tight budget:

  • Shopping in supermarkets.

ShoppingThere are various such stores spread all over major towns. They include Nakumatt, Uchumi, Tuskys, Ukwala, Woolmatt,and  Naivas supermarkets. These outlets usually vary in their pricing.

It is therefore advisable for one to visit these shops to determine one that has a better deal

Over holidays, most of these stores always give their customers the opportunity to buy certain clothing especially t-shirts, blouses and trousers at a cheaper/discounted rate.

  • Shopping in exhibition halls

Majority of these are located within the central business districts in many towns. The prices of  items on display are not affordable to all. It is therefore essential for one intending to shop from these places to prepare themselves to get a serious bargain.

Another strategy one can use is to go to those malls that are slightly away from the central business district.

Also avoid shopping for  clothing gear that is considered to be the “in-thing” as you will have to cough a lot of money.

  • Shopping in second hand markets

There are several of these in all towns. Here one has the opportunity of getting the latest fashion design at minimal cost.

It is also worth noting that some exhibition hall traders also buy stuff from these markets, have them dry cleaned before selling them at a higher price in their exhibition halls.

When planning to shop from second hand markets:

1.       Don’t buy something just because it’s cheap and cute.

2.       Stick to clothing that looks as new as possible by avoiding faded items

3.       Check out for stains

4.       Bargain.

5.       Avoid buying clothes that require re-sizing as this means an extra expense on you

One also needs to dress down a bit when visiting these markets to avoid being charged exorbitant rates. There are traders who will inflate the prices if they see you as someone who has money to spend.

If  not familiar with Kiswahili, it is advisable for one to have a friend who Is fluent in this language accompany him/her  for shopping.

Avoid carrying huge sums of money, so as o avoid giving in to impulse buying. Some of these markets are also not safe due to the presence of pick “pocketers”.

  • Shopping in Eastleigh  malls

There are many shops in Eastleigh, Nairobi that sell new clothes at lower prices. Some of these stores also sell designer wear at lower prices compared to exhibition halls.

When visiting these shops avoid those that have fixed prices. Also ensure that you bargain for whatever item you intend to buy. One can even slash the price given into two as part of the bargaining process.

However, one needs to look out for the following:

  1. Items that are found in each and every store. You might end up buying a uniform of sorts. It is not a good feeling when one buys a certain item only to find 3 or more people I town adorned win the same gear. This is a feeling you want to avoid at all cost.
  2. AVOID visiting these malls over holidays, as the Somali’s are known to inflate the prices of these goods over holidays. For example, you might consider shopping for Christmas wear in October and not December.

Shopping on a tight budget need  weigh you down.

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