Canal Street in New York's Chinatown is the place in New York City to buy fake handbags, wallets, perfumes and watches. If the latest IT-bag goes beyond your budget than this is where you'll able to find an ok fake one. You just need to know how. There is a difference between "counterfeit" and "knockoff" bags. Counterfeit bags are the same model, same color, same logo as the original. Knockoffs are imitation bags, you could say that these models are inspired by the original model.
The streetvendors usually display their stuff on foldable tables, in boxes and large plastic bags that they open and close every now and then. Or you'll see them walking around with arms full of watches or 30 hats on their head. Generally speaking these are low quality goods. In the many bagshops that Canal Street has, the quality is a little bit better. You can see its not the real deal, but they can have pretty good items. And should you be in need of a new suitcase then this is the place to be. Supposedly.
The "high quality fakes" require more "work". Walking on Canal you'll be whispered at "Gucci, Prada or Chanel? Louis Vuitton, Coach"? If you nodd the whisperer will ask you to follow him or her to a place where its not so crowded and out of sight from the police. There you'll be shown a brochure out of which you can take your pick. A runner then goes out to get it. Or you'll be asked to follow and you'll be taken to a secret store. Which is sort of scary and exciting. A back alley, or a dark stairway that leads to some basement. As soon as you step in the door is closed behind you. No one is to know about it.
There are also cars with blinded windows. Scariest of all if you ask me. You get in, the doors lock, sometimes the car will start to drive slowly and from under a blanket the best bags are brought up. All fake ofcourse. If you're not that adventurous (and we don't blame you) then your best bet is to just go into one of the shops on Canal Street and selfconfidently, as if you're a regular, ask for the "backroom". Most shops have a semi secret shop in the back, usually very small and packed. You'll be hurried in and also here the doors will be locked behind you. Only to be opened after the special knockcode. The atmosphere will be somewhat tense and the sellers are constantly on the phone with a person on the lookout. Always on guard for a raid by the police. Which is not for nothing ofcourse.
It's not illegal in New York to buy fake stuff, but it's against the law to sell it. The sellers risk a huge penalty and all their goods will be taken in posession. That's why every now and then you'll see streetvendors grabbing their stuff and running away. It's a constant cat and mouse play between the sellers and the police.
If a new fake handbag makes you happy you should really go check it out. Check the quality of the bag your aiming for, the linings and logo. Isn't the plastic to stiff? And, does it feel right to carry a fake bag around. Knowing that they're often made in unsafe circumstances in countries where childlabour is still an issue. The famous brands are damaged by the fake goods. And the state New York claims it's missing out on taxes they'd otherwise have earned. Which I think is a questionable since a lot of people simply cannot afford the "real deal".
Last but not least; always negotiate about the price. A good fake can never cost you more than 85 dollars. You pay with cash.