Prices go crazy as we get closer to Christmas yet our Christmas budget doesn’t seem to get bigger, right? That’s why despite the traffic, the crowd, and the chaos, smart moms still find it wise to skip the malls and flock to Divisoria to shop for presents during this much anticipated season of the year.
If you haven’t committed to becoming a Divisoria diva yet, now’s definitely the time to seriously consider being one. The district’s multiple malls and street side shops abound with sensible choices for presents at such affordable prices, especially when you intend to buy items in bulk. All you have to do is put on some comfortable shoes, pull out a stroller bag, prepare yourself to squeeze your way into packed aisles and busy streets, start scouring for great finds, and have fun haggling.
Here are some ridiculously great bargains we’ve spotted a few days ago that will make awesome gifts without making a big dent on your budget. (Got some Divi shopping tips? Send us a message via our Facebook!)
For your inaanaks, your officemates’ kids, your child’s classmates – any kid below the age of 7 Every kid we know wants a toy for Christmas, so if your gift list is largely dominated by tots (your own and godkids alike), you should definitely check out 999 and 168 malls for their toy selections (yes, to the uninitiated, those are the mall names). You can find large plushies selling at prices as low as P200 and wooden educational toys for less than P100. Magic Boards and white boards also make great bargains at P60 to P80.
For siblings of your inaanak to your friend’s kids who are in the tween or teen stage The main aisles of 999 and 168 malls are lined with shops selling ready-to-wear clothing that are perfect for the fashion-conscious. Sort through a selection of both classic and trendy apparels, and you’ll find dresses for as low as P300 and board shorts at P150.
For the boys in the family Juan Luna Street is Divisoria’s main hub for shirts. You can get big discounts if you buy wholesale at a minimum of six pieces per size and color, but prices remain significantly low even if you buy per piece. Made-inthe-United-States premium cotton T-shirts are sold at P115, polo shirts are at P165, and drift jerseys are at P95. Good quality sweatshirts are also a steal at P265 to P280. Hooded pullovers are available for as low as P340, and full-zip hoodies make great gifts at P355 to P375.
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For the girls in the family Flats for as low as P150 a pair? Definitely a shoo in (pun intended). Many of these are displayed ukay-style on tiny stalls outside the big malls so always get your shopping radar on check. Sneakers in different colors are also sold for as low as P100 at Tutuban Mall, along with pretty flip flops at P60 a pair. You may also check out 999 mall for embroidered caps at P100 and fisherman’s hat for as low as P50.
For your girlfriends Looking for awesome presents for your besties? Check out 999 Mall for cool gadget accessories. Here, selfie sticks in different colors sell at P100, mini tripods are available for as low as P200, and cellphone rings are a steal at P35.
For families who just moved into a new home (or for your own home) Along Sta. Elena Street, just outside 168 Mall, you’ll find a shop that sells a great selection of wall clocks and photo frames at bargain prices. Wall clocks range from P55 to P150, while large photo frames are sold for as low as P200. You can also get selected assorted designs if you buy in bulk to take advantage of lower wholesale prices. You can also find curtains for as low as P100 along Ylaya Street.
For the family or friend who is into DIY Divisoria is a wonderland for DIY lovers. So why don’t you make a special do-it-yourself kit for your crafty friends this Christmas? Different fabrics for clothes, curtains and other purposes are sold almost everywhere you go in Divisoria , but more affordable selections are particularly plentiful in shops along the streets of Ylaya and Sto. Cristo. You may also get them the sewing tools and DIY accessories they need at Plaza Amigo in Tutuban or the shops along Tabora street.
Cristina Gomez-Verano grew up tagging along with her mom on her regular Divisoria trips to shop for materials for the family's dress shop. She now finds herself frequenting the place with her own 7-year old son when she started her personalized printing business, JCB Print Shop. Cristina is also a copywriter for The Filipino Channel and a lifestyle contributor for different publications.