How To Bargain

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art of bargaining


Not everyone can afford every luxurious thing available but still everyone wants the best. Do you know how to bargain? So, the art of bargaining often helps us to attain the joy of getting the best at the best prices. I am sure my close friends and sisters would be laughing as they read this as I have been a bad bargainer forever. Now, I have been a bad bargainer only for one reason, I cannot forgo something that my eyes love. Since, I shall be talking about thrift shopping for apparels, bags, bags, footwear and accessories only, I should mention that I at mines even end up paying for something that I buy only because I like it (not because I would wear it). But as I have grown up (not that I have entered old age, I am still in my early 20’s), I have learnt the art of bargaining. I shall be sharing a few tried and tested tips here on how to bargain.

  1. Have an Idea: Whatever market you are planning to (Janpath, Sarojini in New Delhi, Fashion street or Causeway in Mumbai or any other), do some research about the place before-hand. No googling for this, ask your friends and their friends also for the quality and prices that are available there. Doing this will give you a base price that you can have at the back of your mind while you quote for anything that you pick up from the flea market.

2. Don’t Plan: Do not have your shopping list ready before you head to a street market or flea market. In fact, I shall say, never plan   before you head for shopping, it either ends up in disappointment or over buying.

3. No Male Company: The art of bargaining is something that the male specie fails to understand. Never ever take a guy shopping with you to a thrift market. Take them to malls and high end boutiques and save your credit cards and do not take them to flea markets to save your shopping. Guys get irritated of the entire bargaining and haggling business and either behave like a spoilt sport or pay more. Every Guy fails to understand that shopping is as important to us girls, as play station is to guys.

4. Go in a Group: Take your best friends/sisters along. Often when you go in a group, the shop keeper would lessen the price easily gauging that it could give him multiple customers in an instant.

5. Tie your Hair: Wondering why I am mentioning this here while writing on how to bargain? Not much of a connection it seems but it certainly has one. Most of the flea markets are open markets. It is good to tie your hair, to save you from the heat and sweating. Too much heat and sweating can make you irritated while shopping. I would say keep cool, because it would be an adventurous war ahead.

6. Wear Flats, comfortable shoes: It is a good practice to wear comfortable shoes while shopping as it helps in hopping from one shop to another.

7. Never get Stuck: If you like something very much and the shopkeeper refuses to lower down the price, do not get stuck on the thing. It’s a flea market and you will find more shopkeepers stock similar stuff.

8. Walk away: This is one of the best techniques that works with the thrift markets (have seen in Janpath and Sarojini Nagar a lot). This is in fact the first most important principle that the art of bargaining would have. Walk away, if the shopkeeper is not lowering the price of a product to your desired and quoted price, walk away! He will come back running to you, saying, “Kitne me lena hai”, now quote Rs 25 extra and grab the piece.

9. Always Quote Half the Price: I have learnt this from a friend. Whatsoever it is, shoe, bag, dress, jumper, always quote half the price or even lesser. If the shopkeeper says 800 Rs, staright away jump to Rs 350. There are bright chances that you can even get lucky at that amount (considering shopping experiences at Sarojini Nagar). Even if your price doesn’t end up in a deal, you have a good range to haggle.

10. Do not speak English: NEVER speak in English while at these thrift markets or flea shops. They will loot you or not lower down prices at the best possible extent.

11. Do not show interest: Do not act like a small girl who sees a chocolate or a doll. If the shopkeeper can gauge that you love the product like way too much, then the deal is gone from your hand and he knows that you definitely do not know how to bargain.

12. Talk to him: Do not just quote a price and move away! Tell him, “Bhaiya, humne pehle bhi yahan se khareeda hai”, “Doosri dukaan me toh 200 ruppees me mil raha hai”, “sahi daam bolo”, “Bachha samajh ke befwoof mat banao” and blah blah. These would tell him that you ain’t a novice and he would not cheat you with a big ampunt atleast.

13. Please have a look at the Market: At least true for the Delhi markets, every second shop will have the same stuff. Take two rounds of the market, before you finally decide to pay. You should know the prices at which a particular product is being offered at two thrift shops.

I laughed a lot while writing this post. In fact, I did not even stop for thinking because these are points that I have written from personal experiences of bargaining or how I have seen others bargain. Share your special bargaining tips too. I would love to read how you have been practicing the art of bargaining.

flea shops


So, this is my take on How To Bargain!



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  1. Hi there, You have done a great job. I’ll definitely digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I’m sure they will be benefited from this site.

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