Practical information : Treat yourself (& others) Cape Verde
Most stores are open Monday to Friday from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm and from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm and on Saturday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. This is especially true for large stores or stores in the city or in the shopping malls. In the tourist areas, on islands such as Sal or Boa Vista, near the resorts, the opening hours of the stores are much wider and more flexible, and the shops sometimes stay open all day non-stop, in order to meet the needs of the holidaymakers.
Budget & Tips
Shopping is usually easy, convenient and well-practiced. What's more, the vendors speak to visitors in several languages. However, it is important to take into consideration that there are a lot of small stores, stalls or street vendors, which can offer tempting merchandise, but which do not accept credit cards. It is therefore wise to carry small bills in local currency to be able to meet your purchasing needs. Otherwise, you should know that almost all stores accept the euro, but payment in foreign currency will have an extra charge of about 10% (stores as well as restaurants), as shopkeepers tend to round the exchange rate in their favor. (1 € to 100 CVE).
Another tip is to shop around to compare prices and compete, especially for handicrafts from mainland Africa. Depending on the vendor or store, you may be able to get a discount or even a small souvenir gift.
What's very local
Some markets are real souks, like those of Sucupira and Assomada in Santiago. Besides the stroll for the picturesque aspect of the places, it is also the occasion to make some shopping. For some years now, the country has been invaded by the handicrafts of neighboring countries such as Senegal, Guinea and Guinea-Bissau, because Cape Verdeans produce much less than before, when there was a real wealth of crafts. Nevertheless, there is a noticeable awakening of the artisans. Whether in the famous markets or in small shops, you will find basketry, pottery, hats, shells, ceramics, wood, and carved coconuts or African musical instruments. The women also produce beautiful doilies and embroidered bedspreads, all made by hand, during long hours of work. This is why, although negotiating prices is common in the markets, and knowing that the local population is relatively poor, one is not necessarily obliged to play the game. Shopping and haggling, of course, but as you wish!