The Longchamp boutique on Rue Saint Honoré in Paris was one of my stops during my very short Paris layover. Despite the weak dollar, Longchamp is still cheaper in Europe, even without the value-added tax refund of ~12% for when you spend over 175 euros (20% – the Global Blue processing fee). Here are some examples, pre-VAT refund, with currency exchange rates (updated March 2, 2016):
- Le Pliage Travel Expandable Travel Tote $255 vs. 130 euros ($141) = 45% off
- Le Pliage Large Duffel $135 vs. 70 euros ($76) = 44% off
- Le Pliage XL Duffel $155 vs. 80 euros ($87) = 44% off
- Le Pliage Large Shoulder Bag $145 vs. 80 euros ($87) = 40% off
- Le Pliage Small Shoulder Bag $125 vs. 70 euros ($76) = 40% off
- Le Pliage Neo Small Crossbody $225 vs. 120 euros ($130) = 42% off
- Le Pliage Neo Medium Crossbody $245 vs. 130 euros ($141) = 42% off
Update: March 2015. These styles have been discontinued. And you can see how much stronger the dollar is against the Euro since this was first posted in 2010! The Planetes line was replaced with the Le Pliage Neo line.
Planetes Messenger Bag: $278 vs. 135 euros ($200) = 30% off
Planetes Medium Long Handled Tote: $155 vs. 69 euros ($103) = 33% off
Planetes Large Long Handled Tote: $175 vs. 85 euros ($112) = 36% off
Planetes Small Tote: $98 vs. 46 euros ($68) = 30% off
It’s even better when you find seasonal Longchamp styles on sale in France during their semi-annual soldes in January and June (+/- a few weeks). However, you don’t necessarily have to go to Paris to find current season Longchamp below retail. It seems like there are opportunities to purchase Longchamp on sale (~25% seems average) on a monthly basis stateside (edit: well, during the recession. Now it’s more like quarterly!).
In the U.S., you can find Longchamp at:
- Longchamp.com – Largest selection, but I find the website hard to navigate. Once I ordered during a sale and it took them weeks to recognize that an item was out of stock.
- Nordstrom – Free shipping and amazing customer service. Participates in seasonal sales. Good photos of bags on models.
- Bloomingdales – Free shipping typically for orders over $150. Participates in seasonal sales. Sometimes Longchamp is excluded from sitewide promotions/friends and family discounts.
- Neiman Marcus – Generally free shipping (look at the top of the page) and is included in discounts/promotions.
- Sands Point Shop – I used to shop here when they were known as Magnums. Free shipping and no tax outside of NY State.
- Bagshop – Longchamp is excluded from promotions. Free shipping over $75. Has discontinued colors/styles.