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Buying equipment in Dubai

Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#1
Hello from Dubai! I'm prepping for my first Camino, VdlP in April/May, and I'm not finding the best selection of equipment in Dubai. Any recommendations from the wise, experienced ones? I've gone to Decathlon in Mirdiff, and the Sun and Sand Sports outlet. I'm considering Adventure HQ, but it looks like they don't have the best selection either judging from their website. My greatest concern is finding a lightweight pack. For smaller stuff (like the Merino wool t-shirts), I've ordered from Desertcart.com, but they've been having shipping issues, so would be great to have an alternative. I welcome any and all suggestions. Many thanks!
 

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RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times, but soon again I hope....
#4
Are you starting in Seville? Did you look online to see what outdoor shops they have there?
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#5
Try Amazon.

Buen camino.
Thank you for the suggestion, nycwalking. I've thought about Amazon, but I'm hoping for a local solution because shipping from abroad is very expensive. Desertcart offers a local solution for that, but there have been issues lately, unfortunately.
 

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Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#6
Try REI.com - They ship
Thanks so much for the advice, Bob. I will look into REI, though I imagine shipping will be quite expensive, which is why I'm hoping for a local solution. Also, for such a crucial piece of equipment as the pack, I would much prefer to find a place in Dubai so that I can try them on and make sure the fit / comfort is right.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#7
Are you starting in Seville? Did you look online to see what outdoor shops they have there?
Thanks, RJM. This is a good suggestion. I would prefer to not leave it until then (the last-minuteness would stretch my comfort zone, but maybe that's a good thing!), but this is definitely an option to keep in my back pocket.
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times, but soon again I hope....
#9
Thanks, RJM. This is a good suggestion. I would prefer to not leave it until then (the last-minuteness would stretch my comfort zone, but maybe that's a good thing!), but this is definitely an option to keep in my back pocket.
One thing to keep in mind is traveling as light as possible when walking the Camino is far more important than pack choice. Modern backpacks are all pretty well made these days and I've never found much difference between them, especially for the Camino which is a walk, not a technical hike. I'd have no problem popping into a shop upon arrival in Spain and grabbing one off the shelf and start walking.
Good luck.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#10
I bellieve there is a company in Spain, with retail outlets, named Decathlon.
There is, and they have a branch here, but they only have Quechua packs, and I'm not sure that's what I want to go with. And I checked REI and they don't ship to UAE. Sigh... I will figure it out. Thank you for the suggestions!
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#11
One thing to keep in mind is traveling as light as possible when walking the Camino is far more important than pack choice. Modern backpacks are all pretty well made these days and I've never found much difference between them, especially for the Camino which is a walk, not a technical hike. I'd have no problem popping into a shop upon arrival in Spain and grabbing one off the shelf and start walking.
Good luck.
Thanks, RJM. You sound much more spontaneous about these types of things than I am! Still, it's great to know I will have options. Thanks for the advice!
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times, but soon again I hope....
#12
Thanks, RJM. You sound much more spontaneous about these types of things than I am! Still, it's great to know I will have options. Thanks for the advice!
You will see a lot of Quechua equipment, including backpacks worn by pilgrims on the Camino. It seems to be pretty popular and I had a couple of tech shirts made by them. Good stuff. I don't think you would make a bad choice with their equipment if that's all that's available in the UAE. Definitely better than arriving without equipment and wondering if you will find what you need within your budget, not to mention time spent looking for it, which could be time spent walking the Camino.
good luck
 
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago to Finisterre to Muxia 2013
Camino Frances May 2015
Camino Frances July 2017
#13
Hi Mel,

Just a quick word of warning about Quechua backpacks. Purely anecdotal but two of the ladies I walked with last year complained about rubbing from hip belts by their lower back. I'm afraid I don't know which models they had but I'd suggest if you were considering getting one that make sure this isn't an issue.

Good luck,

Rob.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#14
Hi Mel,

Just a quick word of warning about Quechua backpacks. Purely anecdotal but two of the ladies I walked with last year complained about rubbing from hip belts by their lower back. I'm afraid I don't know which models they had but I'd suggest if you were considering getting one that make sure this isn't an issue.

Good luck,

Rob.
Thank you, Rob. Very helpful indeed! I will pay particular attention to that.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#15
You will see a lot of Quechua equipment, including backpacks worn by pilgrims on the Camino. It seems to be pretty popular and I had a couple of tech shirts made by them. Good stuff. I don't think you would make a bad choice with their equipment if that's all that's available in the UAE. Definitely better than arriving without equipment and wondering if you will find what you need within your budget, not to mention time spent looking for it, which could be time spent walking the Camino.
good luck
Thank you, RLM. I will keep all this in mind.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) portugues(2013)San Salvador (2017)
#16
hi. What about shoes? they are really important. they ought to be comfortable on your feet before you start walking a camino. Many opinions on these. If you have no outstanding issues, trail shoes will be fine. I use walking shoes, Meindl, as they suit my broad foot. Actually, broad feet! Other stuff, well, your stated concern is backpack. I can't recommend for you, but can say that my woman specific Lowe Alpine (33/40) is good enough, and fits the size decreed by cheap airlines as carry on luggage. I would also agree with some posters, that when you arrive in Spain, presuming you will arrive in a large city, you will have access to outdoor shops apart from Decathlon, and you just need one visit to find your backpack. Tis will be alright! Buen camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#17
hi. What about shoes? they are really important. they ought to be comfortable on your feet before you start walking a camino. Many opinions on these. If you have no outstanding issues, trail shoes will be fine. I use walking shoes, Meindl, as they suit my broad foot. Actually, broad feet! Other stuff, well, your stated concern is backpack. I can't recommend for you, but can say that my woman specific Lowe Alpine (33/40) is good enough, and fits the size decreed by cheap airlines as carry on luggage. I would also agree with some posters, that when you arrive in Spain, presuming you will arrive in a large city, you will have access to outdoor shops apart from Decathlon, and you just need one visit to find your backpack. Tis will be alright! Buen camino.
Thanks, Kirkie. I already have my shoes (Salomon boots because I need the ankle support) - bought them when I was in Denmark over Christmas :) I've been steadily breaking them in since.

As for the rest, that all sounds very encouraging!
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
#18
Nothing wrong with Quechua for a hike like the caminos. I wouldn't take one of their packs up the Matterhorn but then I don't go up the Matterhorn anymore. Just make sure it fits your body. A hip belt shouldn't rub because a hip belt shouldn't move contrary to your body movement.

Pack it with the weight you'll be carrying plus a bit, leave your credit card in the shop & go for a walk around the block or up a few flights of stairs.

Happy shopping
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#19
Nothing wrong with Quechua for a hike like the caminos. I wouldn't take one of their packs up the Matterhorn but then I don't go up the Matterhorn anymore. Just make sure it fits your body. A hip belt shouldn't rub because a hip belt shouldn't move contrary to your body movement.

Pack it with the weight you'll be carrying plus a bit, leave your credit card in the shop & go for a walk around the block or up a few flights of stairs.

Happy shopping
Thanks, Tincatinker. I appreciate the input. It sounds like my best bet is to give the Quechua packs a shot (along with a very thorough vetting), and if they don't work, then I can explore other packs once I reach Spain.
 

KRA2018

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances- 2017
Santiago- Finisterre (2018)
#20
I am in Abu Dhabi and bought my equipment last year via a mix of Adventure HQ and Sun, Sand and Sports online and outlet store. For socks I had a friend in Australia pick up an order and bring them back
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#21
I am in Abu Dhabi and bought my equipment last year via a mix of Adventure HQ and Sun, Sand and Sports online and outlet store. For socks I had a friend in Australia pick up an order and bring them back
Thank you for sharing, KRA2018. I will PM you - would love a couple more details, including where you bought your pack.
 
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
#22
Nothing wrong with Quechua for a hike like the caminos. I wouldn't take one of their packs up the Matterhorn but then I don't go up the Matterhorn anymore. Just make sure it fits your body. A hip belt shouldn't rub because a hip belt shouldn't move contrary to your body movement.

Pack it with the weight you'll be carrying plus a bit, leave your credit card in the shop & go for a walk around the block or up a few flights of stairs.

Happy shopping
If Quechua is good for almost every French and Spanish pilgrim I met then the brand must be half decent ;)
Funny btw to notice how some nationalities stick to certain brands...Jack Wolfskin and Deuter comes to mind;)
Seriously, Decathlon is in their pricerange very good.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#23
If Quechua is good for almost every French and Spanish pilgrim I met then the brand must be half decent ;)
Funny btw to notice how some nationalities stick to certain brands...Jack Wolfskin and Deuter comes to mind;)
Seriously, Decathlon is in their pricerange very good.
Thank you for the insight, Sabine. I guess people like to stick with what they're familiar with :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April/May 2017
#24
Hi Mel, good luck sourcing your kit. I used to live in Bahrain and the Sun, Sand and Sports outlet had some half decent North Face gear. I think there were a couple of similar shops in the Dubai Malls last time i visited. I am starting out from Seville on 9th April, maybe see you along the way. If you get really stuck I could deliver stuff to Triana Backpackers Hostel to await your arrival. Buen Camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP April/May 2018
#25
Hi Mel, good luck sourcing your kit. I used to live in Bahrain and the Sun, Sand and Sports outlet had some half decent North Face gear. I think there were a couple of similar shops in the Dubai Malls last time i visited. I am starting out from Seville on 9th April, maybe see you along the way. If you get really stuck I could deliver stuff to Triana Backpackers Hostel to await your arrival. Buen Camino.
Hi Clive, that's a mighty generous offer. Thank you so much. I think I have my strategy worked out, but if I get into a bind, I will keep that in mind. I hope we do cross paths. Buen Camino.
 

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