Shopping in China: Baopals shopping is easy to do

You wouldn’t know it if you looked at the current state of my apartment, but things are actually coming together. Yes, there are boxes and bits of styrofoam everywhere – but it is slowly becoming a home. Baopals and I have become best pals. I’ve hated going shopping my whole life – but doing it in the comfort of my home and then waiting for a package to arrive is really something else. I can’t even begin to describe the childlike glee that washes over me when I take a pair of scissors to undo the scotch tape that’s holding the box together.

Baopals is the English version of Taobao – a Chinese online shopping website headquartered in Hangzhou (my home city) and owned by Alibaba. It is the world’s biggest e-commerce website. I’ve bought all kinds of random bits on pieces on Baopal – from chopping board sets, to bins, to whole cartons of milk (and beer lol), plates, cutlery, honey – you name it and Baopal’s got a range for you to choose from. Depending on where in China the package is coming from – it can arrive at your doorstep in anything between 2 days to a week. 

Click click click and then scan the QR code to pay by WeChat. This whole paying by WeChat business makes paying by credit cards seem like something crazy old fashioned and from a long gone era. No joke… 

Apart from the lousy, poorly-made toy-like vacuum cleaner, I’d say I’ve been happy with most of my purchases. Clothing’s also been a bit of a miss for me. It’s not so much the quality of the clothes themselves – but the cutting doesn’t quite suit non East Asian women.

I’m so so so relieved that this service is available as I really don’t have the time or energy to go shopping right now. I work from 8am to 8pm everyday; so the added responsibility of the household is not something that I can actually handle. I’m really thankful to have a super spacious apartment – but the truth is, I don’t even have the time to decorate it or take care of it at this present moment. 

Nevertheless… the best thing that happened to me on Baopals is… the electric blanket. Oh my goodness, I can’t believe I didn’t discover this sooner. It is the most awesome winter-time invention ever. No more waking up or going to bed shivering. 

I’ve pretty much stocked the house – now all that’s left is shopping for groceries. I got a contact card from a fellow colleague and I’ll hopefully be stocking the house with Indian spices pretty soon.

Till next time – pleasure doing business with you. 


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