Second hand clothes, used bags, vintage jewellery and bric-a-brac, clothing, retro shoes – thrift shopping as such is very popular among locals in Budapest.
But where can you strike an amazing bargain, and find something special, a real hidden gem to take away from Hungary as a little unique gift? Our series of Budapest on a budget is rolling on.
Unfortunately, unlike in England, charity shops in Budapest are not widespread. In fact, the first charity thrift shop opened in 2012 in Budapest. So if you are looking for some kind of shop like the Cancer Research shop, the Red cross shop, Sally Ann’s or the Mind shop, you will need to look for places that are non-charity based second hand stores. They are called in many names in Hungarian: turkalo (turkáló – rummage sale), használt cikk bolt (used item shop), etc.
Here are some of the best thrift shopping places, used item sellers and shops in Budapest:
There are three sorts of second hand shops in Budapest, the general thrifts shops, and two extremes, one of which is selling more elegant clothes, the other selling more rock – punk – leather stuffs.
Regarding the best thrift shops, there are so many second hand shops in Budapest, and their quality is so fluctuating that it is hard to recommend one or two solid places. That said, we would recommend the following.
The Elegant Feminine style for Vintage Thrift shoppers
Vintage Shop, Budapest: the elegant recycling shop sells all sorts of vintage products, mostly dresses, skirts, blouses, jackets, coats, etc. The shop is at 9 Prater Street, District VIII of Budapest (close to the metro station called Corvin setany, about 10 min from Deak Square by the M3 blue metro line) The Vintage Shop facebook page is: here where you can see some photos of the second hand items they have on display. No two items are alike, as you can expect.
Omama Antique (Ómama Antik) is another elegant vintage shop. The shop is a nice walk from Margaret Bridge, in Frankel Leo Street, at number 7, in District II of Budapest (Buda side). Note: the prices are not the cheapest as it is reselling high brands, Gucci, Dior, etc.
General Second Hand shops in Budapest
In the standard second hand clothes shop in Budapest, you can find all sorts of clothes for women and men, but mostly for the female buyers. Clothes are from the last 2-3 decades of all varieties, shapes, colours and qualities. There are usually special sale boxes too where the least wanted items end up. Besides clothes, you can often get shoes, belts, rugs, tablecloths, linens, bed sheets, towels, faux jewels, vintage items. Once in a while you can get something truly lovely that will make you feel rich instantly. Some of the best shops in this category are as follows:
Szputnyik Shop may have exciting unpredictable items. Two shops in Budapest:
- Szputnyik D20 at 20 Dohany Street in District VI
- Szputnyik Bazaar, at 8 Bakats square, District IX
Popec is selling mostly Italian clothes, and is located at 39 Erzsebet korut street.
Renoválás second hand shop by Blaha Square is a hit and miss place. There are many regulars, and its location is close to the city center.
Hada is quite popular, it is a chain thrift shop selling mostly British 2nd hand items:
some of its downtown shops
e.g. HADA in 45 Bajcsy Zsilinszky way
68 Rakoczy Way, VII. district
9 Thokoly Way, District VII
Humana shops are also abundant and popular
40 Erzsebet korut street
24 Rakoczy Way
63 Rakoczy Way
9 Szent Istvan korut street
(korut means ring road and each of its section has a different name)
at 24 Karinthy Frigyes Street, District XI Budapest
The Rock Punk style Used item Shops in Budapest
in Anker Alley (Anker köz), close to the city center, Deak Square
Jajcica in Dohany Street Budapest (close to the synagogue)
some photos of the shop here:
Alterego is a mix of old and new stuff, but the audience is the young ‘kickass’ hipster style
Budapest District VII, 4 Erzsebet korut street
Those who are staying here as expats and enjoy biking, may wish to visit the second hand bike fairs held every month at Szimpla kert ruin bar in District VII.