Outlet stores have gotten a bad rap in the past. Outlet stores used to sell clothes with flaws like uneven hems, funky colors and sale rack castoffs. Nowadays brands stock their outlet stores with specially designed merchandise, providing a quality product at a lower price. If you’re looking for designer duds but aren’t willing to pay the department store prices, outlets are your answer. Here are five good sized outlet malls, all within an hour’s drive of Washington.
Queenstown Premium Outlets
441 Outlet Center Drive
Queenstown, MD 21658
(410) 827-8699

Queenstown is the ideal shopping detour on for your next trip to Ocean City. Located about an hour and half from D.C., the mall has over 75 stores including brands like Tommy Bahama, J. Crew, Polo Ralph Lauren and St.John. A trip to Queenstown is also your opportunity to cross the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, one of the scariest and longest over water bridges in world. Don’t worry, if you’re too scared you can pay someone to drive you and your car across. 

Arundel Mills Outlet Mall
7000 Arundel Mills Circle 
Hanover, MD 21076
(410) 540-5110

Arundel Mills is a modern shopping center that mixes outlet shopping with value stores and entertainment. In addition to your standard outlet stores like Neiman Marcus Last Call and Michael Kors Outlet, the Arundel Mills Mall also has standard mall stores like Bass Pro Shops, Skechers and Pink. Family members who don’t like shopping can see a movie, play games at Dave & Busters or try lady luck at the Maryland Live! Casino. The mall also has a large variety of quick-serve and sit-down restaurants.

Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets
241 Fort Evans Road N.E.
Leesburg, VA 20176
(703) 737-3071

The Leesburg Outlets are located about 45 minutes outside of D.C., near the Dulles Airport. This mall has more than 110 designer stores including Polo Ralph Lauren, Ann Taylor and Under Armour, plus luxury brands like Burberry, Movado and Kate Spade New York. The newest additions include Australian sheepskin boot retailer UGG and Calvin Klein Accessories. The Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets have a small food court, or you can venture off site for more dining options.

Related: Best Boutique Decor Shops In Washington, D.C.

Potomac Mills Outlet Mall
2700 Potomac Mills Circle 
Woodbridge, VA 22192
(703) 496-9330

Shopping at outlet malls is not ideal when the weather is bad. The Potomac Mills Outlet Mall is enclosed, making shopping at the 200 plus stores a breeze. Nordstrom Rack, Saks Fifth Avenue OFF FIFTH and Victoria’s Secret are just a few of the stores you’ll encounter. Potomac Mills also has a movie theater and over 25 restaurants including Cheesecake Factory, Bobby’s Burger Palace and Bahama Breeze.

The Outlet Shoppes At Gettysburg
1863 Gettysburg Village Drive
Gettysburg, PA 17325
(800) 868-7553

Gettysburg is known for its Civil War battlefields, but it also has some great shopping. Take a break from sightseeing with a visit to The Outlet Shoppes at Gettysburg. This classic outdoor outlet mall has a lineup of outlet favorites like GAP, Harry & David, Stride Rite, Jones New York, Pepperidge Farm and many more. Find unique and seasonal items at The Civil War Store, Christmas Tree Hill and Dollie & Me. The Shoppes at Gettysburg also have quick-serve food options like Subway, Fruziyo and Auntie Anne’s.

Related: Best Kids Clothing Stores In Washington, D.C.

Christa Emmer is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in broadcast journalism. She has experience as a news writer, editor and producer in television news. Follow her on twitter @ChristaEmmer. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.