Zero Waste Shanghai
Where to repair things in Shanghai?
Things break. Before heading out to buy a new one, why don’t you take a minute to find some ecological and economical repair alternatives? In this article, we compiled some tips on where to get some common items repaired in Shanghai.
First off, the application Dianping is super useful in helping you find businesses that offer different services. For repair, search “维修;” for patching clothes, etc. search “补衣服.”
Phones and other electronics
Cellphone shops are ubiquitous in Shanghai and most of them have repair services. The trick is to find a trustworthy shop. I’ve heard of rumors where some shops switch out the good parts in the phone for cheaper ones during repair.
Tip: don’t go to guys on the street or in the metro station that offer repair services. There is no means for recourse here if you only realize later that something went wrong. Instead, visit multiple shops and ask them to give you a quote. Stay at the shop during the repair if possible.
2. Clothing and fabrics
This is another one of those easy-breezy repair jobs that you can find a million tailor studios around the city for. The trick here is to be able to communicate what exactly you want done and how you’d like it done.
Tip: for those struggling to speak Mandarin, this is the time to bring your Chinese friends!!
3. Furniture and home appliances
As this is a more specialized category and often requires that the repair person comes to your house, you will have a hard time finding businesses offering this type of repair service on Dianping (which operates off of a physical location of the business). Instead, use 58.com. (Yes, literally 58.com, then select Shanghai as your city. Again, no English version here) Think Craigslist for China, but more organized and for profit (or the website “Angie’s List” in the US).
Tip: we already mentioned the Chinese word for repair, furniture is “家具” and appliance is “家电.”
4. Scooters and bicycles
Chances are you already know a few scooter and bike shops around your block. They are usually nice people working hard to make a living. Use common sense when negotiating and treat them nicely!
5. Shoes and small household items
Small things such as shoes, handbags, etc. can be fixed at these do-it-all repair shops. I don’t recall there being a name for these shops but here is my secret tip.
Tip: these services are oftentimes organized around the local wet market. When in need of anything, just go to any shop at the wet market and show them what you need fixed, and they should direct you to the right shop!
6. Still not satisfied?
For the creative kind and the die-hard zero wasters, we offer the ultimate solution: Xinchejian (新车间). This is a space for makers and creators to rejoice in having access to a wide range of tools and other creative minds to share project ideas with. Go find out more for yourself.
Do you have your own hacks for where and how to fix something? Have a repair service that you trust? Share in the comments below.
*all photos obtained with implicit permission from Pexels.com