Are camera prices much lower in hong kong compared to North America? If so what are some reputable stores?
I don't know the price of camera in North America, I bought three years ago my Canon and Nikon while in HK is certainly cheaper than in Belgium and I still both using it now, I travel 5 times a year and is my second life when traveling :-)....I bought it at "Tin Cheun Camera Shop" in Stanley....visit the shop if you will be in HK there are plenty of camera shops in HK....before my trip I'm searching of reputable shops for camera and I came to the website I mentioned above
Be wary! Unless you have vast knowledge and experience with these cameras you may not be given the genuine product.
In Hong Kong you will get budget friendly prices to purchase camera. There are many reputable shops, but be careful of the clone machines they sell.
For an American there is no advantage to buying elsewhere. The retail prices in the US are among the cheapest in the world, and very importantly there will be be no issues with the warranty, let alone buying a fake or refurbished unit being sold as new.
I have never bought a DSLR in Hong Kong, but did so for a mid-range camera. In terms of prices, you save the 13% HST as there is no tax in Hong Kong, comparing to buying in Canada.
There are lots of dodgy shops, especially along Nathan Road. My suggestion is to buy from large chains such as Broadway (store locations: [original link]), Fotress [original link], and Manshing / Wingshing in Mongkok [original link]
You should check the warranty first to see if the warranty will be honoured in Canada. Otherwise, you'll have to go back to HK if there is any problem.
I see you are from Canada too.
Buy locally (Aden camera in Toronto - they have a good web store if you don't want to drive their yourself), is likely your least expensive bet. They tend to be a bit less expensive than either Henry's or Vistek (who also have good on-line stores)
Canadian distributors will not fix your camera if you bought it abroad, both in and out of warranty. I think Canon may have a North America wide warranty, but they are the only one. Nikon Canada has a nice sign on their counter in Mississauga, stating exactly that. Unfortunately, there really are no independent repair shops anymore - you are stuck with getting your gear fixed by these companies.
Canadian prices for cameras and lenses are in line with US prices (if you factor in the exchange rate), but the accessories (batteries, memory cards, etc) tend to be less expensive from B&W and Adorama (both bricks and mortar camera stores, out of New York City with good web stores). I have had good experience in the stores and web site sales from all five of these companies.
You can try Amazon.ca as well and if you are a Costco member, they can be a bit less expensive (but have a very limited selection).
Cameras and lenses - I would definitely not recommend buying overseas unless you have no other choice.
As a photographer, I've yet to encounter a better price in Hong Kong or Thailand when looking for lenses and cameras - either Nikon or Canon.
Best prices i've seen world wide is at B&H Photo in NYC.
I've shopped all over Hong Kong in the Tsim Sha Tsui district and in the camera stores as well as Thailand, Beijing and Shen Zhen. There is simply no comparison.
Additionally, warranties and the such will not be covered once you return to USofA
When ordering on line here in the US, B&H and Amazon do not charge sales tax and it is free delivery.
I also like the (on top of Nikon's warranty) the B&H warranty.
We're both saying the same thing I think - it is not cheaper to shop in HK
Shipping to Canada is a different story. There will be taxes added if it is an expensive item. There are companies that have mailbox service at border towns in the US for a fee. Again, the buyer is subject to paying taxes depending on how long they've been away in Canada and how much the item costs. The US-Canada exchange rate isn't helpful to Canadians these days. There maybe a warranty issue if buying in the US. It's worthwhile to look into it first.
desormej lists Wasaga Beach as home, and that is just over an hour north of Toronto, Canada, hence the references to how things work in Canada.
The complication is Canada and the Canadian distributors. If you don't buy it locally, they won't service it (even out of warranty). The only exception seems to be Canon, who have a North American warranty.
When buying from abroad; taxes and duties are assessed on items coming in by customs, so one pays those on the declared retail value of the products. If you are shipping it., then depending on the carrier, there can be brokerage fees as well. The same goes for items brought back from abroad. If you have been away from more than a week, you can bring $CAD 800 back duty free, but once you exceed that limit, taxes and duites apply.
I'm a Hong Kong citizen. It is no doubt that you can get probably the best price of a DSLR in HK comparing to any other countries. For a newly released Japanese model, you can have the cheapest in Japan, but short after then, price in HK can be even a bit more cheaper. Try price.com.hk, it's trustworthy in a certain extend.
Actually there is lots of doubt, especially when comparing to North American prices like the OPer is doing.
Martian24: there is no such thing as North American prices. OP lives in Canada, and as mentioned a few posts earlier, you have to factor in additional costs such as the availability of international warranty, the exchange rate (US$1= CAD$1.3), shipping, duties and taxes for Canadians making purchases in the US. Buying in the US for Canadians isn't always the best deal.
Of course there's North American prices. Canadians purchase from Canada, Americans purchase from the US, Mexicans purchase from Mexico. Canadians do not have to purchase from the US.
My one and only point is that it's extremely unlikely that HK can beat by an appreciable amount the prices that the OPer can find in Canada.
Throw in the issues with warrenty and refurbished cameras then in my opinion it's a no brainer.
That said, opinions are meaningless. Numbers never lie. All the OPer has to do is some basic research regarding the DSLR they're interested in, and simply compare the HK prices in your links to the prices available in Canada, while not forgetting the warrenty issues.
No big deal.
GrumpyDiver is correct (and others) about the Canon camera warranty good in ANY North American country IF bought in one of those countries. I recently replaced an (intermittant and unpredictable blank shot failures) 9 year old Canon Powershot A-720 DSLR (about 27,000+ photos taken) with a new Canon Rebel SL1 EOS 100D and also purchased an extended 3 year warranty from the Canon dealer in Calfornia. A Hong Kong purchase of a Canon DSLR would not offer you ANY warranty protection in Canada should you have a failure of the camera. A Professional Photographer friend of mine stated his camera factory repairs (when still supportable) have sometimes equalled the camera initial purchase cost (when out of warranty) so having a valid warrranty with a purchased camera is important. Don't believe a Hong Kong camera clerk about warranties-read the fine print, if any, and walk away.