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The Denver area has a wide variety of stores and shopping centers which carry almost any type of merchandise that you could be looking for. Many stores are open seven days a week including holidays and some are even open 24 hours a day.

Stores in the United States place a high value on customer satisfaction. If you have a question about an item or have a problem with a purchase, talk to one of the sales associates or request to speak with a manager.

Sales Tax

When you purchase anything other than grocery items, you will usually be charged a state and local sales tax. Unlike many countries, sales tax is not included in the prices displayed. The tax is added when you check out. Sales tax in Colorado varies between cities so that a purchase made in Denver may have a different percentage of sales tax than the same purchase in another community such as Englewood or Aurora.   Many online purchases are also subject to sales tax.

Local Shopping

Grocery Stores

There is a good selection of places to purchase grocery items around campus especially if you use public transportation or have access to a car. Grocery stores in the area include Safeway, Whole Foods, King Soopers and Sunflower Market.

For those looking for food items from their home countries, Denver has many ethnic grocery stores. This list of international grocery stores is based on their distance from the University.

Household Goods

When shopping to find items for your dorm room or apartment, large retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target or Kmart offer a large selection. Other good options include Big Lots, Bed Bath & Beyond, Sears, Best Buy or IKEA depending on the type of item you are looking for.

Used Items

One way to save money is to purchase used or 'second-hand' items instead of buying something brand-new. Stores such as Goodwill and ARC Thrift Stores sell used furniture, kitchen supplies, household goods and clothes often for a fraction of the price of a similar new item. The popular website Craigslist is another source for used goods.

Shopping Centers

Shopping malls are convenient if you desire to have access to many different stores in one location, are looking for name-brand clothes and accessories or if you just like to 'window shop.' Popular malls include Cherry Creek Shopping Center, 16th Street Mall, Park Meadows, or Colorado Mills.

Dining Out


When eating out, it is good to be aware of when to tip and how much the tip should be for. In the United States, tips or gratuities are not added into the bill. Based on the level of service by the server(s), a tip of 15-20% of the bill (not including tax) is recommended. However, some restaurants will include the tip (often 18%) in the bills of large groups, typically 8 or more diners. Most restaurants will disclose this practice in their menu.

Tips are not expected at fast food restaurants or cafeterias where food is ordered at the counter instead of a server taking your order at the table.

If you order food to be delivered to your residence, a tip is normally expected by the driver.

The purpose of this web page is to provide a broad overview of the subject. It should not be considered an authoritative resource. No company listed above is affiliated with or endorsed by the University of Denver.