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The 7 Best Dollar Stores Around the World

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The 7 Best Dollar Stores Around the World
A dollar store may not seem like a must-see on your travels, but some truly stand out. From Japan to Denmark and beyond, these shops’ affordable products are often far superior to anything you’d find at your neighborhood Dollar Tree. Plus: They’re great places to stock up on inexpensive souvenirs. Here are seven of our favorites around the globe.
By Audrey Bruno
Courtesy of Euroshop
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    1. Germany: Euroshop
    As far as dollar stores go, it doesn’t get much more organized than the Euroshop. Based in Germany, everything here is diligently sorted into bins that would make The Container Store jealous—there’s not a bottle of soap or a set of scissors out of place. They sell practically everything, including food, makeup, and electronics (headphones that actually work for a euro, folks!). While these products are nothing fancy, the quality isn’t secondhand. Of all their offerings, though, their toy section takes the cake. Even if you don’t have a kid to shop for, you’ll probably still walk away with at least one coloring book or old-school Hot Wheel.
    Courtesy of Euroshop
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    2. Japan: Daiso
    It’s hard not to spend hours in Daiso, Japan’s take on the variety store. Most locations consist of three floors with at least one devoted entirely to kawaii (that’s “cute” in Japanese) stationery and crafts, and it’s a great place to load up on beloved Japanese eats—hello, furikake and Pocky Sticks. Things are cheap, but it’s easy to go crazy. By the end of your trip, you’ll be left wondering how you managed to spend 3,000 yen (about US$30) on Gudetama stickers and Kewpie mayo. If you’re in California, Texas, or Washington, you can experience this shop stateside, too.
    Courtesy of Daiso/Facebook
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    3. Denmark: Flying Tiger
    Perhaps the hippest of the bunch, Denmark’s Flying Tiger has an amazing selection of home decor, complete with plenty of palm tree prints and millennial pink. Its collection of kitschy knickknacks has earned it the nickname “the IKEA of junk.” Although not as inexpensive as some of the others on this list, the trendy products on offer are still extremely affordable (nothing costs more than 5 euro). Plus, they’re expanding—they now have outposts in much of Europe and even in New York.
    Courtesy of Flying Tiger
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    4. China: Miniso
    A Japanese invention based in China, Miniso was created to compete with brands like Muji and Uniqlo, and it’s doing just that. Unlike the others, this shop focuses primarily on fashion and beauty products, complete with enormous nail polish displays and tote bags galore. Of course, you can still find plenty of local edible treats as well as electronics, kitchen gadgets, and more.
    Courtesy of Miniso
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    5. India: US Dollar Store
    Despite its name, you can’t find this dollar store in the United States. Rather, this India-based chain earns its title for its devotion to the red, white, and blue theme. If you’re an American abroad, you’ll feel right at home here. “True American Shoppee” signs hang from the walls, and you can buy Starbucks mugs and Tropicana fruit juice alongside Buddha statues. Their selection isn’t the most polished, but that’s part of the charm. You never know what great find you’ll manage to dig up.
    Courtesy of US Dollar Store
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    6. Netherlands: Hema
    The focus at this Dutch store is all on sustainability. Everything they offer—whether it be clothing, coffee, or cardboard—is responsibly produced and environmentally friendly. In fact, they’re so serious about it that they keep their website up to date with annual sustainability reports in both English and Dutch. The eco-friendly emphasis certainly doesn’t hurt the quality of their products, either. Pastries like stroopwafels and savory bites like rookworst (smoked sausage) are their claims to fame.
    Courtesy of Hema
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    7. Malaysia: Eco-Shop
    Originally known as RM2—the equivalent to about 50 U.S. cents in Malaysia—the selection at Eco-Shop isn’t vastly different from other dollar stores around the world. What makes this chain special is the large sense of community it fosters. Have a complaint? Shout it out on Facebook and an associate will get back to you within minutes. As far as the must-have products go, it’s all about the snacks. Bring an extra suitcase for all the smelly durian treats you’ll be bringing home.
    Courtesy of Eco-Shop
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