Shopping around the world doesn’t have to revolve around grabbing the latest Gucci handbag or finding an appealing Zara top. Sometimes, global shopping is best when you’re searching for a deal! Countries like Thailand, India, and China have amazing markets where you can find the most unique items. While the shopkeeper may give you a price, many of them are willing to give away their products for cheaper than they list them. Either they are selling fake merchandise, listing them higher than what they are worth, or manufacturing them cheaply. Regardless, haggling your way down to an affordable price will ensure you get the most bang for your buck when traveling the world.
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So, let’s take a look at some of the best bargaining strategies for when you’re traveling the world.
Be Ready to Buy
You don’t want to waste your or the shopkeepers’ time. Therefore, if you are wanting to bargain the price down, then be willing to purchase it. If you merely want to know the price of an item then ask without showing an eager intent on buying. Once you start showing an interest in an item it’s likely they will push for a sell. If you have no intention of grabbing it then don’t entertain the bargain.
Scout Before You Commit
In the same breath, be sure to scan the markets before committing to a purchase. Don’t begin the bargaining process before you’ve looked at every possible option. Either you will find something you want more somewhere down the line or you’ll find the exact same piece for half the price. Take in as much as possible before beginning your haggle.
Meet Them Halfway
It’s unlikely that the vendor is going to part with the item for less than half of what they list it. Therefore, your starting point should always be halfway. This should not be your ending point unless the item is clearly of little value. Once you begin by bidding half of what they ask, you can work towards meeting them in the middle of that. For example, if they are asking for $20 then start the bargain at $10. You should land the deal at $15. If they won’t meet you halfway, then consider taking your money elsewhere.
Be Firm But Considerate
At the end of the day, the vendor is trying to make a living. Sure, the item may not be worth the total cost but they are not trying to con you. That said, do not go into a bargain with your ego blazing and attitude. Be considerate of their time and effort, allowing them to offer counter bids. Don’t immediately dismiss them if they won’t give it to you for what you want. Be kind and leave politely. In the same breath, if you feel strongly about a figure don’t settle for less. No need to make a commotion about it, just stand by your price. If you cannot come to an agreement then part ways respectfully. This will avoid leaving any bad blood with the locals.
There you have it, a few key ways to get your haggling going the next time you visit a bargain market. If you wish to read up more on bargaining across the world then check out this essential resource. Implementing a few of these strategies will help you purchase more affordable products and save on your travels. Furthermore, this will ensure that you bargain properly and don’t offend any of the locals. Happy product hunting and safe travels!