Shopping in Europe (4.5% VAT)
Andorra shopping prices: supermarkets and stores, alcohol, cigarettes, clothes, sports goods, ski equipment, photo, electronics, perfumery, jewelry, bicycles…
The capital of Andorra — Andorra la Vella, that is located in a cozy chine of the Pyrenees, from recent time can offer maximum opportunities from the point of view of European shopping.
Due to the fact that the VAT rate in Andorra is one of the lowest (IGI) 4.5%, shopping in Andorra is one of the most advantageous within the bounds of EU for some products.
Secondly, shopping in Andorra la Vella presupposes maximum concentration of boutiques, stores and shopping centers per square meters. There are more than 500 stores in Andorra. For instance, being in Avenue Carlemany you are within walking distance from monobrand boutiques with clothes or jewelries, sporting malls and supermarkets that sell alimentary products and alcohol.
Thirdly, a top-notch shopping is combined with inseparable landscapes, skiing, thermal springs and developed touristic infrastructure. Shopping in Andorra is one of the major reasons of the fact that the Principality with 70 000 of citizens is annually visited by 8 mln of tourists.
Shopping prices. What is cheaper, or the myths travel agencies say about cheap prices in Andorra?
Food prices. The price of the consumer’s supermarket basket in Andorra is 15-20% and 20-30% higher than in neighboring Spain and France, respectively. Therefore, many Andorrans prefer to spend their time and money on gasoline to go to the Mercadona supermarkets at the weekend (Mercadona is the largest supermarket chain in Spain). The closest of which is just 7km in La Seu d’Urgell in Spain. In the case of needing to purchase products from a delicatessen (cheeses, pâtés) or French production (much higher quality), Andorrans prefer to travel 70km to the nearest Lidl supermarket (Lidl is a German chain of discount supermarkets) in Foix (France).
Prices for clothing, sports and skiing goods. The prices for clothes in Andorra are 15-30% higher than those in neighboring Barcelona or Toulouse.
At the same time, the choice of clothes in Andorra is very small compared to the above cities. With a seemingly large number of stores, in reality, in Andorra, there are no more than three large retail chains (Viladomat, Pyrenees and Via Moda) which own these stores. Therefore, purchasing of new fashion items is carried out by no more than three buyers, making the choice of clothes limited.
In addition, many large stores sell unsold clothes and shoes in outlet stores at discounted prices; however, if the goods have not been sold for a long time, they can be returned to the main store by the next season as a new collection and at the original price.
It is difficult to find any leading luxury brands in Andorra.
Prices for electronics. In recent years, in Europe, the main turnover and cheapest prices for electronics have been found in online stores. There is no online trading in Andorra. Paypal and similar payment systems do not work with Andorran banks.
Most of the small private shops located on the Avenue Carlemany and Meritxell which sell both clothes and electronics are not subject to global laws on retail trade and consumer protection (Andorra is not included in the European Union). You can easily be denied a refund for a defective item and are likely to only be offered the option of replacing it with something else as a solution. The rules concerning this are often written in very small print in places where customers usually do not look.
The most expensive prices in Andorra, both for food and household goods and clothing, were recorded in major shopping centers located in Andorra la Vella and Escaldes-Engordany.
Andorra only offers competitive prices on tobacco and alcohol products, as well as cosmetics and perfumes, due to the fact that these products in other European countries are subject to high excise taxes and fees. At the same time, only one litre of strong alcohol and one block of cigarettes can be taken out of Andorra, which also makes shopping for alcohol and tobacco non-competitive.
The stores in Andorra have only 4 days-off in a year:
– January, 1
– March, 14 (The Day of Constitution)
– September, 8 (National holiday of Andorra—The Day of Our Lady of Meritxell);
– December, 25 (Christmas)
Working hours of supermarkets and big shopping malls are from 10.00 to 21.00 every day without breaks.
Working hours of other stores are from 10.00 to 21.00 Monday-Saturday, Sunday is a day-off, lunch-break is from 14.00 to 16.00.
The article “Custom limits of export” can be found here
Molls and commercial centres
Avda. Meritxell, 92, AD500, Andorra la Vella
+376 870 310
Roca & Ribes
Av.Meritxell, 118, Andorra La Vella, AD500
Av.Meritxell, 5, Andorra La Vella, AD500
+ 376 81 30 34
ctra. D`Espanya, s n, Sant Julia de Loria, AD600
+ 376 76 50 00
Av. Meritxell, 11, Andorra La Vella, AD500
+ 376 88 00 00
Av. Carlemany, 70, Escaldes-Engordany, AD700
+ 376 89 20 00
Avd. Tarragona, 26, AD 500, Andorra la Vella
+ 376 88 04 00
Av. Meritxell, 93, AD500, Andorrа la Vella
+376 82 23 77
Commercial centres on a map: