Everyone who is going to Nepal knows that in Kathmandu you can buy equipment very cheap. But not everyone knows how much it costs. And not everyone knows that not all equipment is worth buying in Kathmandu. The answers to most questions about trekking equipment in Nepal, we will give in this article.
How much does it cost to go to Kathmandu?
All our treks in Nepal begin in the capital city of Kathmandu. And every time we and our participants buy all the equipment they need for successful trekking. So we know the prices of gear in Kathmandu very well. Prices are from spring 2018 and are current as of early 2020:
- Trekking poles: $8-35. With the cheap ones you’ll get through one trek quite well, for $15 the ones on sale are already pretty good, from $25 the good ones. 7075 aluminum, fast click locks, comfortable grips, etc.
- Nepalese warm hats with earflaps: from $ 1. Although for that price sells with tears in their eyes, and if a good bargain. Such a hat – just a must for every trekker. These two-layer hats, soft fleece inside, outside wool. And warm, and wind protection, and just decorate. You can take home for all the souvenirs 🙂
- Warm jackets with synthetic insulation: 20-50 dollars.
- Down jackets: $ 70-120. Very warm, lightweight. Nuances two: you need to understand the down, otherwise they can slip you a jacket with a feather, and it’s almost not warm. And the second: these jackets are constantly coming out of down.
- A down sleeping bag: $50-100. For 50 will be quite light, for 100 – comfort temperature 0 – minus 5. The nuances are the same as with jackets. Choosing a good sleeping bag is a real problem, we found one suitable for the whole Tamel.
- Fleece suit: fleece pants about 10 dollars, fleece jacket 10-15, the choice is normal. For 30 you can find a good and nice one.
- Trekking pants: $8-35.
- Cap, gloves: $ 5.
- Camping gas: $ 5 for a small cylinder – 250 ml, 8-10 for a large.
- Membrane pants: 20-35 dollars – you can find quite decent, but you need to understand the fabrics and membranes.
- Membrane jackets: a lot at 20-30 dollars, but the membrane does not work in them. For 50-70 you can find a real membrane.
- Microfiber towels: 5-8 dollars – large size.
- Trekking sandals made by Onepolar $30-35. Other local brands are much worse.
- Backpack 30-40 liters – there are really good ones for $20-40 dollars.
Important! Here is the actual price of our purchase, and we haggled diligently. In the beginning, the prices for gear in Tamela are quoted as much as one and a half to two times higher.
What not to buy in Kathmandu
You should understand that you can’t buy quality things for cheap – good craftsmanship and technological materials are expensive. Buying cheap equipment in Kathmandu you have to accept its mediocre quality. That is why I categorically advise against buying:
- Technological things – all sorts of membranes, thermal underwear (it is also expensive), etc. If you are not very knowledgeable in it, you can easily get a fake. Better to take home in specialty stores.
- Important equipment such as sleeping bag and boots. The temperature of a Nepalese sleeping bag is hard to guess, and the boots should always be worn at home before starting trekking.
- Backpacks may not be bad, but they cost the same as ours.
- Sunglasses, with the exception of real brand-name, which is difficult to find here.
What gear do I recommend buying in Thamel
As you might have guessed – everything is not very important and not technological. First of all I recommend hats with earflaps (fur caps) which are very nice-looking. Also in Kathmandu almost everyone buys trekking poles, shoe covers, fleece, down jackets, microfiber towels.
And if you really need it badly, then yes, you can buy everything here.
Branded gear in Kathmandu
In addition to basement gear there are stores in Kathmandu with quality branded gear. If you’d like, we’ll take you there to see. But the price tags are definitely not cheaper (or maybe even more expensive) than usual – simple membranes start at 200 bucks and up. The rest is in the same vein.
- Know the real cost of the gear. Ask your instructor and he or she will tell you roughly how much this or that thing should cost. Now you can tell the seller your price, not you.
- Haggle. Prices for tourists are called one and a half to two times higher. At least 30-50% off.
- Do not buy at the first store. Remember the price and go to the next one, maybe you will get a better offer there.
- Leave. Often it’s you after the sellers shout out the best price.
- Buy in bulk. Buying many things at once in one shop can get the best price possible.
- Take a business card of the hotel. The first few days in Tamel is very difficult to navigate, you should definitely have your hotel business card with you. When you get lost, you can get in a cab, show the business card and it will bring you home.
- Ask our teamleader. Don’t be afraid to ask the guide’s opinion on this or that gear. He will help you with both the trade and the choice.
Video overview of the range of camping equipment from Tamel stores