How to Survive in Primark

Primark is a wonderful Irish invention; a shop that sells very very cheap clothes for those who have no sweat-shop related social conscience. You can buy t-shirts for 4 euros, jeans for 8 and a dress for that party you wanted to go to for less than 20. It was my savior at uni – I could be dressed fashionably AND have enough money to buy ridic expensive Japanese textbooks!

Then I came to Frankfurt. Frankfurt has CRAP shopping. Seriously, if you are visiting here and want to spend the day shopping, save your time and money and just don’t. There is a Primark up in a shopping centre in the north and it was nice to make a day trip there once every few months and just buy EVERYTHING – because it was the closest thing to home fashion as I could get. But now there is a new Primark that opened on Frankfurt high street and so you can’t shop there anymore because every spotty teenager from Dornbusch to Darmstadt will have the same items.

BUT since I know a lot of people here are new to Primark, I will tell you as a Primark pro how to work your way around these battlefields.

Rule number 1 – Only bring with you fellow Primark warriors.

Got kids? Nope, try for Primark at 10am on a week day. Leave your boyfriend/husband/non-shopper at home because children and stragglers will only get kicked to the side when all the serious shopping starts. They will get in your way, they will get in my way. We will all be sad.

Rule number 2 – Don’t try it on.

Are you seriously going to wait in that queue for 40 minutes to try on a top that costs 12 euros? Buy it, and if it doesn’t fit, take it back. Or, go at 10am on a weekday.

Rule number 3 – Don’t make it more difficult for staff.

In terms of hardcore levels, you have your That-Guy-Who-Jumped-Out-The-Rockets, you have your Chuck Norris’. Then you have Primark staff. They cannot just throw down their baskets and say “I’m outta here” when the Primarkers get crazy – they HAVE to be there. So even though you picked that Mickey Mouse t-shirt from a mountain, don’t just throw it on the floor after you’ve opened it to see what the rest of Mickey’s face looks like – attempt to fold it and put it back where it should be.

Rule number 4 – This is a battle ground.

Your buggy is in my way. I will move it to the side politely because it’s in my way. You yourself are in my way. I will put my hand on your shoulder and ask you politely to let me past. We are all in each others’ ways. But let’s not be dicks about it, ok? We are not heathens! Let’s not ram past or send each other flying or huff and puff when you can’t get past. After all, we are all here for the love of cheap fashion. And that is a glorious love to have.

Rule number 5 – Don’t be Those Primark People.

You know Those Primark People. Usually a small group of girls or young women, they’ve filled their baskets up want to assess their purchases and maybe try a few things on. So they set up camp in the corner, building a small wall of clothes around them so that no one can get by, and they sort their clothes out, and try on anything they want to try on. Look…this is annoying. You’re blocking a load of clothes, you’re blocking the way, you’re being stupid. If you don’t like something, don’t put it into your basket. Simple as that.

So there we have it – my top Primark tips. If any fellow Primark warriors happen to be reading this and have some tips, please do let me know in the comments!


  1. This was hilarious.
    Primark is my preferred choice among all the high street shops here. I don’t see the point of buying something overpriced and badly made from Topshop or River Island when it’s just going to break or fall apart anyway. I get really annoyed in those shops because all their shirts and stuff are paper-thin and see-through. The quality is awful and they charge way too much. I prefer to spend my money on good quality bags or coats and get everything else from Primark. I think their stuff is cute, too. Well, some of it. I don’t think I could have got through uni without Primani 🙂 Do you have TX Max in Germany too? That’s another favourite of mine 🙂

  2. Love these tips! I totally agree about only going with your Primark warriors, the only people I can go with is my sisters as they are the only ones that get the ‘Primark strategy’! x

  3. You should print this out and share it with those spotty kids and upcountry-weekend-shoppers who usually block Zeil. Zeil = Hattori Hanzō zone.

  4. Haha, it really is a war out there! Honestly, I don’t really understand all this fuss about Primark. Same goes for H&M and sorts. But tastes are different. I for one am an Esprit-oholic. I seriously thought I didn’t spend that much money on clothes there last year and what did I find in my mailbox the other day: a premium loyalty card, ahem ;).

    • Oh wow! I went into Espirit for the first time the other day…I found it a tad too expensive and I didn’t really like the designs but I think that’s because it’s very “German”.

      • Yeah, it’s not cheap and some things are definitely overpriced, but it’s also quality stuff. You can wash the clothes over and over and they won’t fall apart. Haha, I was never aware there was a “German” style, but I know what you mean ;).

  5. Haha – you think Frankfurt is crap for shopping? It’s Oxford St, Camden and both Westfields rolled into one compared with Wiesbaden 😉

  6. This post was very enlightening for me… When I went to London last summer, a local friend here asked me to stop by the Primark for her to pick up some of the tights that she likes. I had never been in a Primark, and I don’t really have any clue about tights, so in I went, armed only with her little drawing of which tights to buy. The Primark clerk took pity on me and, with some amusement, helped me find the stuff I was looking for. I don’t think I’d ever want to shop there for my own clothing, though- I’m not a fan of stressful shopping situations.

  7. My only tip is to go on a weekday, and you’ll be coming home happy. Period. Don’t ever go there on Saturday because it’s a nightmare.

    Zia of Bits Of Germany

  8. Oh I thought it was only me who had serious issues with Primark, but it’s a thing! ; )
    I went to the one on Oxford Street, I literally went in through the door closest to Marble Arch and immediately left through the next. It was traumatising. There was a sea of people. And not a metaphorical sea either.
    But your post tempted me…. As so as they get my cast off…. Weekday it is. : D

  9. I loved Primark when I lived in the UK. Bought some great basics that I wore and wore.

  10. You really don’t know very much about Frankfurt, do you. You probably do your shopping on the Zeil 😉

  11. I am not a Primark fan. Had no idea about it but made the mistake of taking 3 steps into the shop on Oxford street last summer…..3 steps backward quick march. I did notice the one on the Zeil and have always walked to the other side of the street. Those 3 steps were enough trauma in my life…..not a strong shopper! Prefer on-line anytime 🙂
    Juliette recently posted…Cooking without Self-Raising FlourMy Profile


  1. […] and she is British lady living in Frankfurt – just like me! Charlotte has developed her Primark shopping skills down to perfection and her advice is great for anyone new to the overwhelming and hardcore shopping experience. […]

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge

%d bloggers like this: