For Elysabeth Hampton*, 24, a Canadian student of fashion and design living in New York, travel is an opportunity to explore her passion for clothing and style.
“I like to see the kinds of clothes people wear in different countries, and where the cool places are to go shopping, and where independent designers unique to that country have boutiques,” she says.
“A lot of people possibly focus on other things, such as a country’s history or culture – but I see clothing as an extension of art. What’s always been of interest to me is the fashion culture.”
With a wide interest in world fashion, Ms. Hampton can redeem reward points to visit places she has never been to, and observe the local trends. Using the Scotiabank American Express Card, she can collect points faster, giving her more options for travel and exploration.
For Ms. Hampton, who is originally from Toronto, Japan stands out as a fashion leader. “It’s very different than European or American fashion. It’s got an emphasis on fashion as art. They’re not so much concerned with convention. It’s more like whatever you can create is okay; it becomes a new version of normal. The brands that come out of Japan are so unique.”
A recommendation on a blog sent her on a particular memorable shopping journey while she was in Japan. “It was in the basement of a juice shop in Omotesando, a neighbourhood in Tokyo. No tourist would find it. It was hidden. It’s almost like it was only supposed to be found by those truly committed to finding it. That’s the kind of air it gave off. It was one of the most interesting retail experiences I’ve ever had. It was a subterranean museum-looking type of store that sold really high-end women’s fashion from around the world, but mostly from Japanese designers. That was a cool fashion experience.”
Redeeming points saved up on the card can keep Ms. Hampton’s dreams of exploring global fashion alive. A trip to London was also memorable for the styles and fashions she observed. “London is in my mind like Japan because it’s so fashion-forward, and so popular for its fashion choices,” she says.
“Walking around the streets you can see some pretty unusual characters, people who are on the cutting edge of design. There are amazing stores like Liberty of London. They sell everything from celebrated British brands to unknowns – but they’re all great.”
New York is also an exciting destination for anyone interested in fashion, she says. “I can’t think of a single place in North America that can top New York City in variety. If you want a little taste of the fashion of England or Japan or anywhere, you’re probably going to find it here.”
Those interested in the “best of the best” in fashion can find it at department stores such as Barneys, Saks Fifth Avenue or Bergdorf Goodman, she says. But she prefers what she calls “the downtown scene.” On the Lower East Side, “every time I go down there I go into some store I’ve never seen before. The Bowery has amazing shops. So does the East Village, right into Soho. You have to know your way around. All the cool stuff is downtown, if you’re a young person.”
With average monthly spending of $1,575 on a Scotiabank American Express Card, Ms. Hampton can take a round-trip back home to Toronto to visit family and friends. And reward points will help Ms. Hampton reach new destinations. “I’ve always wanted to go to Morocco. I have friends who have gone and had an interesting time going through the markets, buying leather from the tanneries and jewellery.
“Travelling is a wonderful experience for me, and being able to shop in new cities is always one of my favourite things to do.”
* Real name is not being used.
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® American Express is a registered service mark of American Express. This credit card program is issued and administered by The Bank of Nova Scotia under license from American Express
¹ You will earn 2 points per $1 on the first $50,000 in purchases made annually at American Express merchants classified in the American Express network as: Gas Service Stations and Automated Fuel Dispensers; Grocery Stores and Supermarkets; Eating Places and Restaurants, Drinking Places, Fast Food Restaurants; and Entertainment including Motion Picture Theaters, Theatrical Producers, Ticket Agencies, Bands, Orchestras and Miscellaneous Entertainers. Some merchants may sell these products/services or are separate merchants who are located on the premises of these merchants, but are classified by American Express in another manner, in which case this added benefit would not apply. You will earn 1 point per $1 on purchases made after you have reached the 2 points per $1 $50,000 annual spend maximum and on all other purchases made with the card. Points are not awarded for cash advances, Scotia®* Credit Card Cheques, Scotia Rewards Dollars, returns, payments, casinos and gambling, annual membership or card fees, interest charges or service transaction charges. Scotia Rewards points must be redeemed within 60 days of account closure or they will be deleted permanently. If your account is not in good standing, the accumulated Scotia Rewards points are not eligible for redemption.