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Cebu has plenty of shopping facilities and you can buy almost anything you want here. There are two major shopping malls in Cebu City, Ayala and SM. Both are on a par to those found in the UK and offer a good place to get out of the heat and mingle with the locals.

As with all malls there is a multitude of eateries offering various types of cuisine and all at a very reasonable price. Additionally both malls Save More Supermarket image
have supermarkets in the basement that are not unlike the Tescos, Morrisons etc found in the UK. Sorry they are a little different, given the staff here seem to want to help you without being asked. All your shopping is packed for you and they will even take it out to your car or the taxi rank. Tesco Please Take Note!.

The malls can get very crowded at the weekend and in my opinion are best avoided at these times. The Filipinos know how to make a noise and you will often be deafened buy various singing competitions or shows that are being performed there. The sound systems utilized would probably do any major concert hall proud.

The moment you walk in the the mall you will know if there is some sort of show, by the deep thudding base and ear piercing vocals of some young hopeful. You do get used to it but often the sound level is just over the top as is the obsession with thudding base.

The selection of shops is very much the same as any UK mall with various clothing retailers selling both local and branded imported products. There are several shops that cater to Home Cinema and audio and the products on offer are very high quality and up to the minuet technology.

There are hardware stores where you can buy a good selection of hand and power tools, along with screws, nails and most things you might think of. Should you require building materials we have a few large builders merchants not unlike a scaled down B&Q in the UK.

You can get all types of domestic appliances from kettles to hoovers, ceramic hobs to american style fridge freezers. A wide selection of television sets from 21inch up to 60inch rear projection. The price of these products is very comparable to those in the UK, so it might be worth bearing this in mind should you come here to live. Cebu is third world but the products to be found here are up to the minute and readily available.

English is spoken here to some degree by almost everybody, however it does not mean there are no communication problems. It is very common to ask a shop assistant a question only to find that you have been completely misunderstood. You might be given the answer as yes when they mean no. Perhaps they will tell you they don't have a product purely because the did not understand the question.

You have to persevere at times and bear in mind that the average Filipino's grasp of English is likely to be better than your grasp of Tagalog will ever be. Everybody in the shops are friendly and only to pleased to try and help you out. The UK shop assistants could learn a thing or two in this area.

Example of market stall selling fruitIn addition to the malls you have a number of markets dotted around the city. The most notable would be the market at Colon. This is without a doubt the largest market in Cebu City and is famous because Colon Street is the oldest street in the Philippines. If you visit this market I would advise you to hide your valuables and be on your guard as pick pockets and street thieves are an all to common part of the City.

So get out there spend your cash and enjoy the Cebu shopping experience.

Last Updated: February 13, 2009 15:39


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