I absolutely love to haggle. In fact, one of my favorite memories of my European backpacking trip with my hubs (then boyfriend) was not seeing the Eiffel tower or taking in all the ruins in Rome but having a blast haggling in the markets of Florence. In Florence, they have rows and rows of little vendors selling gorgeous Italian leather bags and gloves and tons of other things. It was so much fun to go there and enjoy talking to everyone.
I know lots of people don’t like haggling, and I don’t know why I think it’s so fun but I do. There’s just something about finding something beautiful that you want and getting it for a great price. It’s not that I’m cheap; quite the contrary. It’s just that I have fun going back and forth with vendors and agreeing on a price. Because I’m not overly materialistic, I can easily walk away at any time without the item which is a great bargaining tool.
If you hate haggling or you want to learn how to get a better price for anything, here are some ways to do it politely so you don’t feel awkward going for it.
1. “Is That Your Absolute Best Price?”
When you want to get something for a lower price, asking “Is that the best you can do?” sounds a little condescending. So instead I like to ask “Is that your absolute best price?” complete with a smile. This works in the markets of Florence or when you’re trying to get a deal on your wood floors at Home Depot. You would be surprised at just how negotiable things are.
2. Take a Walk
You’ve probably heard that a great negotiating tactic is to walk away. Of course, the catch with this is that you have to actually do it. So, if you spotted that one of a kind pair of Italian leather boots and you can’t live without them, don’t walk. However, if you’re buying a car and there are several car dealerships in your area, then by all means take a hike out the door. They’ll usually come calling after you.
3. Be Reasonable
You’re not going to get a brand new car for $2,000. You’re not going to get free cable service for a year (unless the company did something really, really wrong.) So, be reasonable. Have a price in mind that you want to get but also spend some time thinking about if its really possible. Vendors aren’t just going to give away their products. They have to make some profit too. So, come up with a number that should make both of you happy.
Overall, haggling can be fun. My husband hates it and doesn’t understand why I like it so much but over the years, I’ve taught him to ask just a few simple, polite questions to get the price down on just about anything. There doesn’t have to be yelling involved or anything crazy when you try to negotiate a price. Actually, I find that the nicer you are, the more likely you’ll get what you want.
Have you ever haggled before? Do you love it or hate it?
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