Visitors to Guangzhou who are traveling outside the fair period will probably first choose to visit the Friendship Store set aside for for eign visitors. It is located in the four-story building to the left of the Bai Yun Hotel. There you may purchase a wide range of goods; foodstuffs, wines, teas, candy, dried fruits, knitted goods, silks, cottons, brocades, handkerchiefs, scarves, umbrellas. You can also buy suitcases and other luggage, items at the store-a useful thing to keep in mind, since you are liable to purchase many items during your travels in China and will probably need additional tote bags. Also on display are shirts, blouses, pajamas, and toys.
You may purchase scrolls, lacquer ware, cloisonne ware, pottery, and porcelain, and you will find a fine range of jewelry. These items are most suitable as gifts; they vary from inexpensive to high-priced, but their main convenience stems from their lightness in weight and small size, always an important consideration for the traveler. One section of the store sells a range of imported cosmatics, wines, spirits, cigarettes, and groceries. There is even a supermarket which stocks imported coffee, powdered milk, insecticides, sanitary napkins, shampoos, deodorants, and many other foreign-brand products. Prices are high.
You may also wish to visit the People’s Departments Store, or Nan Fang Dasha, where you will find hats, shoes, clothing, textiles, sporting goods, bicycles, spare parts, radio, TV sets, towels and linens, to name just a few items. It is well worth going into this store and browsing around, particularly to watch the Chinese shopping. As a visitor you may purchase any of the items on display in the shop, even cotton goods( which are rationed throughout China) without handing over the ration coupons. There is an excellent and inexpensive optical service: imported frames are available at low prices but prescribed lenses take about a week. A branch of the Friendship Store is also located within the People’s Department Store.