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June 4, 2010

My week in Prague is almost over.  Hard to believe that three weeks has flown by and my summer class is almost over. I realized before coming that Prague was more “old school” if you will, than London, but I didn’t realize how different these city centre’s really are.

In earlier posts I talked about Londoners shopping habits.  Specifically many of them  have disposable income and having the ability to find something in a store and buy it without looking at the price tag.  For Czech’s this is unheard of…unless you’re on Parizsha Street which is the worst representation of an average Czech shopper.

The biggest distinction between these two cultures is the way they value price and the product they are purchasing.  I went to the Palladium the other day, which is a very large mall that I would call a mini Mall of America.  It had four floors and just about every store you could think of, but still smaller in size than MOA.  As I followed shoppers around in the most sneaky way i could I tried to understand their connection to the products as they browsed, who they were shopping with, and how they shopped.  I wanted to understand Czech shoppers.

From my observations I found that younger people did not like to shop alone, but women that look like they are of the age to have a family in kids loved shopping alone.  It was a social experience for younger people and for the moms it was a day out on the town by themselves.

Another thing I noticed was people took a longer amount of time than Londoners when looking at a piece.  Say for instance a woman was looking at a dress.  She would touch it, take it off the rack, hold it up, and look at the price.  Price was the biggest thing I noticed because everyone looked at it.  This was not the case in London at all.

The average Czech persons annual salary is $12-15,000 which makes sense as to why these shoppers take note in how much the product is that they are purchasing.   They make choices based on price, while still making sure it is a functional part of their existing wardrobe.

Some may say the Palladium is full of tourists and that they are not Czech people, but from our agency visits this week I gathered that coming to Prague is a big shopping trip for a lot of Czech people that live outside the city centre.  I’m sure I observed some tourists, but there were many differences in my findings from London.

Goodbye Prague 😦 you have been lovely.  Next blog will conclude our group’s culture code of Czech shoppers.

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