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Ranking The Best Shopping Cities In The World

Ranking The Best Shopping Cities In The World

With a new year comes a new start, as well as the opportunity to refresh that wardrobe and invigorate your home with exciting new purchases.

However, if the January blues are getting you down, and your local shopping center feels like an uninspiring prospect, why not book an escape to one of the world’s finest shopping destinations? Whatever your budget or taste, there’s a city out there for you, packed with the designer names you love and the hidden gems you’ve yet to fall for.

Travel experts Expedia know better than most what the world’s best cities have to offer keen shoppers. They’ve put together their top 25 ultimate destinations. This rundown of the finest shopping capitals to visit in 2016 includes top tips from local experts. It’s the ultimate resource for bargain-hunting globetrotters.

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Expedia have developed their ranking based on three key factors: value for money, friendliness, and each city’s comparative popularity. Whilst these are unquestionably vital, there are many other important elements to consider when choosing the right city for your shopping adventure.

So, what are some of the most important components of a world-class shopping city? Let’s take a look at some choice examples.

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Getting About

How you get about within a city is important. In well-connected centers, public transport means you can see the sights while not missing out on the best deals. Old cities like London can seem complicated to navigate, but the comprehensiveness of the Underground network means that it’s easy to skip between the best shopping districts – as long as you know where you’re going.

Smaller, characterful cities like Singapore offer a more concise, but equally eclectic experience. In this busy Thailand city, neighborhoods often mix modern shopping malls with quaint traditional markets. Meanwhile, modern metropolises like Hong Kong pride themselves on the efficient simplicity of their public transport network.

Escaping the Crowds

Whilst global stars like New York and London draw millions of shoppers every year, there are many other wonderful shopping cities to discover. There are thriving boutiques and high street cultures just waiting for you to discover. These underrated locales are ideal for avoiding the crowds and grabbing a bargain.

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For example, Melbourne is ranked a modest 21st in Expedia’s ranking; however, it’s one of the friendliest cities on Earth. It combines a wonderfully warm welcome with a quirky and progressive fashion scene that combines the best of the high street with vintage treasures and innovative local designers.

Many popular European capitals are also emerging as quietly unique shopping destinations. The imperial grandeur of Vienna is increasingly complemented by the very finest of international fashion. Meanwhile, Amsterdam offers a stellar combination of cosy bookshops, diverse department stores, and lovingly curated vintage emporiums. So there’s no need to fixate on New York and the like. Walk the road less traveled to find your own shopping paradise.

Discovering Something New

Shopping in another country can be daunting. Persuading a market trader to part with their goods for a great price can be hard enough (let alone whilst speaking another language entirely), but a hesitant approach won’t help you find the treasures and make the memories that will leave you smiling all the way home. Cities that offer the opportunity of the unknown – that give you the chance to find something unique to that location – are wonderful places to choose for a shopping trip.

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Destinations like the marvels of Marrakech thrive on their street market culture. Around each corner is a unique expression of the character and color of these vibrant cities. In the city’s wonderful Souks, haggling is almost expected. Don’t be afraid to dive right in and see how much money you can save on a variety of handmade wonders!

Let us know what your favorite shopping city is in the comments section below. What are your priorities when choosing a shopping destination?

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Last Updated on April 8, 2019

22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

Unless you’re infinitely rich or prepared to rack up major debt, you need to budget your income. Setting limits on how much you are willing to spend helps control expenses. But what about your time? Do you budget your time or spend it carelessly?

Deadlines are the chronological equivalent of a budget. By setting aside a portion of time to complete a task, goal or project in advance you avoid over-spending. Deadlines can be helpful but they can also be a source of frustration if set improperly. Here are some tips for making deadlines work:

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  1. Use Parkinson’s Law – Parkinson’s Law states that tasks expand to fill the time given to them. By setting a strict deadline in advance you can cut off this expansion and focus on what is most important.
  2. Timebox – Set small deadlines of 60-90 minutes to work on a specific task. After the time is up you finish. This cuts procrastinating and forces you to use your time wisely.
  3. 80/20 – The Pareto Principle suggests that 80% of the value is contained in 20% of the input. Apply this rule to projects to focus on that critical 20% first and fill out the other 80% if you still have time.
  4. Project VS Deadline – The more flexible your project, the stricter your deadline. If a task has relatively little flexibility in completion a softer deadline will keep you sane. If the task can grow easily, keep a tight deadline to prevent waste.
  5. Break it Down – Any deadline over one day should be broken down into smaller units. Long deadlines fail to motivate if they aren’t applied to manageable units.
  6. Hofstadter’s Law – Basically this law states that it always takes longer than you think. A rule I’ve heard in software development is to double the time you think you need. Then add six months. Be patient and give yourself ample time for complex projects.
  7. Backwards Planning – Set the deadline first and then decide how you will achieve it. This approach is great when choices are abundant and projects could go on indefinitely.
  8. Prototype – If you are attempting something new, test out smaller versions of a project to help you decide on a final deadline. Write a 10 page e-book before your 300 page novel or try to increase your income by 10% before aiming to double it.
  9. Find the Weak Link – Figure out what could ruin your plans and accomplish it first. Knowing the unknown can help you format your deadlines.
  10. No Robot Deadlines – Robots can work without sleep, relaxation or distractions. You aren’t a robot. Don’t schedule your deadline with the expectation you can work sixteen hour days to complete it. Deathmarches aren’t healthy.
  11. Get Feedback – Get a realistic picture from people working with you. Giving impossible deadlines to contractors or employees will only build resentment.
  12. Continuous Planning – If you use a backwards planning model, you need to constantly be updating plans to fit your deadline. This means making cuts, additions or refinements so the project will fit into the expected timeframe.
  13. Mark Excess Baggage – Identify areas of a task or project that will be ignored if time grows short. What e-mails will you have to delete if it takes too long to empty your inbox? What features will your product lack if you need a rapid finish?
  14. Review – For deadlines over a month long take a weekly review to track your progress. This will help you identify methods you can use to speed up work and help you plan more efficiently for the future.
  15. Find Shortcuts – Almost any task or project has shortcuts you can use to save time. Is there a premade library you can use instead of building your own functions? An autoresponder to answer similar e-mails? An expert you can call to help solve a problem?
  16. Churn then Polish – Set a strict deadline for basic completion and then set a more comfortable deadline to enhance and polish afterwards. Often churning out the basics of a task quickly will require no more polishing afterwards than doing it slowly.
  17. Reminders – Post reminders of your deadlines everywhere. Creating a sense of urgency with your deadlines is necessary to keep them from getting pushed aside by distractions.
  18. Forward Planning – Not mutually exclusive with backwards planning, this involves planning the details of a project out before setting a deadline. Great for achieving clarity about what you are trying to accomplish before making arbitrary time limits.
  19. Set a Timer – Get one that beeps. Somehow the countdown of a timer appears more realistic for a ninety minute timebox than just glancing at your clock.
  20. Write them Down – Any deadline over a few hours needs to be written down. Otherwise it is an inclination not a goal. Having written deadlines makes them more tangible than internal decisions alone.
  21. Cheap/Fast/Good – Ben Casnocha in My Start Up Life mentions that you can have only have two of the three. Pick two of the cheap/fast/good dimensions before starting a project to help you prioritize.
  22. Be Patient – Using a deadline may seem to be the complete opposite of patience. But being patient with inflexible tasks is necessary to focus on their completion. The paradox is that the more patient you are, the more you can focus. The more you can focus the quicker the results will come!

Featured photo credit: Estée Janssens via unsplash.com

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