So you’ve picked up some great street market bargaining tips and are ready to hit the late night stalls and haggle your way to some great buys. Everybody knows that sellers will inevitably set their prices high enough in anticipation of haggling tourists. While it can be a fun experience and you can walk away with some great deals, it’s easy to fall into the common bargaining traps. Here are some tips to help you avoid making these mistakes.


Don’t be rude. Always greet the seller. In some countries it’s considered rude to not say hello upon entry of a stall so don’t ignore the sellers until it’s time to haggle.

Don’t butt in. If the seller is busy with someone else, still try to politely nod or wave from the background as you browse around.


Don’t bargain on every item you pick up. Be sure you really want to buy the item before you start bargaining. Nothing is more annoying that some asking “Can you take x for this?” every two minutes.

Don’t only buy one item. For the best deals, haggle your way and buy a few of the same items. If there are a few things you want, then offer a collective price for all of them together.


Don’t re-bargain after the seller agrees on your asking price and don’t change your mind at the last minute either.

Don’t insult the goods. It’s okay to politely point out floors in merchandise but don’t consistently bad mouth the goods. This will frustrate the seller and nearby sellers could hear and not want to sell you anything too.


Don’t butt in on another buyers deal. Nothing is more annoying to both shoppers and sellers than someone offering to buy something that someone else wants.

Don’t make an offer before you know the selling price. Some street market vendors deliberately remove the price tags and let unsuspecting shoppers make an offer first. If you don’t know what the merchandise usually sells for, you might give an initial price that is a lot higher.


Always start bargaining by asking for at least 50 % of the asking price. Then haggle from there.

Say thank you and goodbye. Always leave on a good note regardless of whether you bought something.

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I'm Shalinee - a Geminian scientist who loves to travel, write, draw and eat chocolate. I've visited over twenty countries, published a Environmental Science encyclopaedia and somewhere along the way started a science communication company to help students and corporates translate that hard-to-read data generated in a lab. Other than that, I'm just searching for the magic still hidden in the world.

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