An important part of a trip is definitely shopping. When we travel we just want to take home something that will remind us of that trip forever. When talking about Seoul, we know that a lot of people are looking for k-pop albums for a better price than what we find online or on western websites. Then Aladdin Stores (알라딘) are your place to go. Alladin stores are a branch store with franchises all over Seoul, they sell second-hand books and CDs. And I’m not talking only about k-pop albums but all kinds of CDs, DVDs, and books you might be looking for.
As said, you can find an Alladin store in pretty much every part of Seoul, including Gangnam, Hongdae, Seoul University, Jongno, and more. Just type “Aladdin” on either Naver or Kakao map – unfortunately, Google Maps is not your best option to walk around Korea. It’s better to use the apps Koreans themselves use. You will see that those apps tend to be more precise. Usually, the stores are located nearby subway stations, so you can get there very easily. Not only that but at the stores’ surroundings, you can find a lot of cafes and nice places to eat after you’re done with your shopping.
If you are going to Aladdin to buy k-pop albums but at the same time have some concerns regarding the fact that they’re second hand, worry no more! Korean k-pop fans tend to buy albums in large amounts to get tickets for the idols fansign events, but after the event, they’re stuck with a hundred or even two hundred albums, so they sell it to other fans or stores like Aladdin. There are of course albums that are of course “true” second-hand items, but there are also a lot of new pieces, ones that weren’t even opened and still in the original plastic bag. But since they were already re-sold the price goes way down. Want an example? The album “Solo Day” by B1A4 costs around ₩11,000 if you’re buying it brand new, but at Aladdin Jongno Branch it was only ₩4,500. Less than half the price!
But Alladin stores are not only for those who like k-pop. If you just enjoy reading there will be a lot of options for you! It’s a bookstore afterward. You can find all kinds of books, actually: from child stories, which are great for those who are learning Korean and want some practice in reading, to Korean fiction and local author’s books. You can also find a lot of western books translated to Korean, I even found a Brazilian author translated to Korean.
Not only books but at Aladdin, you can also find a huge variety of mangas and manhwas for a really cheap price. At the Jongno branch, they had the very first printing of the first edition of Naruto’s volume 1 for only ₩2,400 (around $2,40). There were almost all of the volumes from Naruto, Bleach, One Piece, Death Note, Soul Eater, and another super famous and popular mangas. If you’re not looking either for books, mangas, or CDs, Aladdin will offer you a bunch of stationery goods for a fair price.
It’s time for cheap shopping!
Read more: Arc N Book