Crumpler Bags in Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi Crumpler Bags

Crumpler Bags in Hanoi, Vietnam are found along Dinh Tien Hoang Street or Cao Go Road which is facing the Hoan Kiem Lake in town center.

As many would claim these are fakes, rest assured most of them are either over-run or excess stock where the factory making Crumpler Bags are located in Vietnam but there have been cases where knock offs are also found here.

I was told by a camera buddy to check out these cool camera bags while visiting Hanoi so on my last traveling day, I paid a visit to this area. 

Another popular landmark for this is the Water Puppet Show in Hanoi. The street selling these bags is just about a hundred meters from this attraction.

Walking along the busy street here, I must have seen at least 10 shops selling all kinds of bags. Note that not all the shops sell Crumpler Bags here, only about three to four shops would carry them in multiple sizes.

Most of the others just have one or two designs and I would avoid these shops and go for the full range ones. You will also see brands like North Face, LeSportsac (Le Sports Sac), Adidas, Nike and many other popular brands along this street.

Hanoi Crumpler Bags
Crumpler Bags in Hanoi

Bargaining while buying your bags here is possible as some of them are pretty acceptable while do not be turned off if you find some other places not budging on their prices.

Trust me, I tried going to one shop and the lady gave me a price, so I knocked it down by 5% to counter offer but she declined and said it was the price she opened at. So I gave her the old 'thank-you-and-walk-away' move but she couldn't be bothered. So much for my bargaining skills.

Eventually I went back to one of the first few shops as they carried an impressive range of bags here. Available were Crumpler Knapsacks to all sorts of sling type bags in various sizes.

The polite Vietnamese lady manning the shop which doubled as a home in the back was clearly helpful in assisting me while I must have spent a good hour choosing my bag there.

Hanoi Crumpler Bag Shop
Crumpler Bag Shop in Hanoi City

Hanoi Crumpler Bags
Tons of bags
I was skeptical at first due to the uncertainty of the bags - were they fake knock offs or were they the real thing.

Research on the Internet showed that most of those who posted information claimed that all the bags here were knock offs so I casually asked this lady about the authenticity of the bags sold.

Her reply - No, they were not fakes but were in fact over-runs or smuggled excess stock made for the local sellers.

Yes, the Crumpler Factory is in Vietnam too. Not that she wanted to reveal her little secret on how they obtain stock, but she was convincing enough. 

Close inspection on the bags showed no flaws or errors on any of them. She assured me that if I took this to a Crumpler Store anywhere in the world, you would see that these were the real deal.

Eventually after carefully choosing a medium sized sling type design, I settled for a dark khaki coloured bag.

The price? I managed to bring it down from VND 600,000 (US$30) to VND 530,000 (US$27) considering I bought only one bag here.

But I told her I would let all my friends know about her shop when they visited Hanoi. By the way, her shop is the first one selling bags as you walk from City View or City Bank in town center.

Mind you this was in April 2010 and so far in the last 7 months, the bag has served me well. No broken zippers or tears as the bag has been well traveled through sun, rain, and sea.

I now regret that I should have bought the Crumpler Knapsack as well. Prices in Malaysia or Singapore are almost three to four times more for these trendy camera bags.

Hanoi LeSportsac Bags
LeSportsac Bags in Hanoi

If you are looking for a camera bag and visiting Vietnam, Hanoi or HCMC is the place to source for them. Rest assured you will be spoilt for choices here but please take note that other types of duffel bags, suitcases and knapsacks sold here are mostly knock offs.

Meaning the top brand bags like Adidas, Jack Wolfskin, Nike and a few others. As for The North Face Bags sold here, I am quite unsure about them as I never did inquire though I saw a number of places selling them by the Hoan Kiem Lake.

How do you spot a fake Crumpler Bag?

Well firstly, the logo will be a little out of shape and the stitching would be in poor quality. Next, there is no name tag inside, then the inner colour is different from the original bags.

For example - The original 6 Million Dollar Home Bag in blue and black is lime green on the inside while the fake one comes in other colours. This applies to the hard core bag lovers.

Where to find Crumpler Bags in Hanoi?

Try visiting Shops Number 31-45 along Dinh Tien Hoang Street for the best selection of bags. When I walked around the Old Quarter in Hanoi, I never did see anyone selling these bags so up to date, they are only found around the lake.

Brands include Crumpler, North Face, LeSportsac, Kipling, Lowepro, Nike, Adidas and more. Quality ranges from medium to excellent so you hardly see any poor and cheap quality here. Prices are around the US$8 to $50+. Bargaining is encouraged here.

For your added info, there is also a couple of shops opposite the Bo Ho Bus Stop with genuine Crumpler Bags available in various sizes too.

For those who want to transfer digital images from your camera to DVD, you can try the camera shop next to the KFC in the center of town where City View is. They are fast and professional.

You can also read my other articles about the world renown Ipa Nima Bags in Hanoi which are a hit among the women and ladies. 

For the coffee lovers, I tried the famous Weasel Coffee in Hanoi which is a must-try here for anyone who loves coffee and the incredible Vietnamese coffee culture.

For photographers, I also managed to do some night exploration to get some Hanoi Old Quarter at Night Pictures and also pictures of the Hanoi Street Life Picture

My conclusion to buying these bags - If you are on a budget, wanting to try it out or suddenly in need of one urgently, this would be your optimum choice. For a good price, you can find some really good camera Crumpler Bags in Hanoi.