Many tourists are used to paying fixed prices for goods at home, and they’re unprepared and out of their element when they visit a country where haggling is commonplace. Internationally, bargaining for the prices of goods and services is popular, so if you’re going overseas, it’s best to brush up on your negotiation skills. Here are some tips on bargaining abroad.
Don’t Be Afraid
If you try to negotiate with a seller, the worst they can say is, “No,” so don’t be afraid to try. You can often haggle for everything from the price of your hotel room to a souvenir postcard. Don’t worry that you’ll be cheating the merchant by getting an unfairly good deal; locals are experienced with bargaining, and they won’t agree to something if it doesn’t give them a profit.
Shop Around and Observe
When you’re at an outdoor market especially, carefully shop around before you make any purchases. Compare merchandise and prices to be sure you’re starting off with the best chance of a good deal. Also, try to observe what the locals are paying for the same items. You’ll have a better idea of what a reasonable price is; just remember you’ll probably still have to pay more.
Think It Over
Before beginning to bargain, think about how much you really need or want the item in question. Impulse purchases can turn out to be a bad idea, even if the deal was amazing Otota. The cost can rise dramatically if you have to ship the item home, for example. A simple travel tip would be to come up with a limit for yourself by determining the highest amount you’d be comfortable spending on the item.
Have the Right Attitude
You should be friendly and positive while bargaining, but firm. You don’t want to show a lot of enthusiasm, or the merchant will see how much you want the item and will stick to a higher price. Point out a potential flaw or express doubt about the item, but don’t be mean, critical, or aggressive. You don’t want the merchant to dislike you, or you won’t get your way.
Don’t Make the First Offer
No matter what you’re bargaining for or where, never make the first offer. Always have the seller quote a price first. Afterward, suggest a much lower price. Wait for them to make another offer, but do not lower your offer until they quote another price. You want them to be bargaining them down, not let them have the upperhand by showing more willingness to come up on the price.
Seal the Deal
Once bargaining has seemingly come to an end and the merchant won’t budge any more on the price, say that you’re going to shop around and begin to leave. It’s likely that they’ll come down more rather than lose your sale. Another tactic to try is asking for an additional item to be included in the price they want. Finally, don’t feel obligated to buy, but do make a purchase if the merchant is willing to accept your lowest price.