Thursday, July 9, 2009

London's umbrellas ain't cheap! Where to get cheap umbrellas in London

London's weather has been fickle of late. I was just commenting about the heat wave that hit London a week back and just a few days later grey clouds, which Londoners are more familiar with, dominate the skies with occasional light showers. That's when you leave your sunglasses at home and pack an umbrella in your briefcase.

One of the first thing that struck me when I arrived in London was how expensive London's umbrellas were. Borders and Boots are selling the foldable varieties for at least £5 - £8 whilst those with fancier designs are going for more than £20 at Selfridges.

I would have thought that for £8, it would have gotten me a sturdy umbrella but one that I got Borders failed on me during a rare heavy morning shower and it had to be when I was already running late for a meeting. The mechanism gave up on me and I had to force it open and holding it open with my bag under my arms and braved the torrential shower. Not a pretty sight.

NTUC+umbrella+in+LondonRidiculous as it might sound, but I was determined to stock up on affordable and durable umbrellas on my recent trip back home. Came back with a couple of NTUC umbrellas. For the uninitiated, NTUC is the 'conglomerate' in Singapore; they have a hand in every business, from insurance to groceries to plumbing services. The S$7.50 umbrella is still holding on well after three months. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

For those who are on the lookout for cheap umbrellas in London, you will be surprised that the cheapest umbrellas can be found along Oxford Street. They are currently selling for £2.99 each at any one of those tacky tourist shops liberally sprinkled along the street. These umbrellas do their job but don't expect too much from them.

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2 comments:

SheR. said...

Yes I totally agree with you on that one CK!

At Harrod's those brollies are going for 30 quid at least! Weather-proof!

C K said...

@SheR,
Hah, you must be one of those sporting Horrods' green brollies... my NTUC FairPrice's is till holding on.