How To Haggle In Egypt

Monday, 16 November 2015 London, UK

Hi, I'm back again! Sorry I haven't been posting as consistent as I should be... you know life and all. Anyway, I've always wanted to do a post on haggling and thought that this would be  the perfect opportunity as my mind is still fresh from Egypt. Now, these tips can be adapted anywhere in the world however, the post is of course based on my recent.

As many of you may know I'm half Moroccan so haggling is like second nature to me. From a young age, I'd always see my aunt doing her best to bring down prices of items drastically, and then my dad in the distance with his shades and polo on looking like a total tourist in his own country of birth haha. From this, I have learnt a few tricks especially when visiting other North African countries, I know the worth of souvenirs ans other things such as home furnishings, textiles (basically I'm the best person to travel with if you want a bargain). 

So moving on, when I was in Egypt I did a lot of shopping in Naama Bay which is where a lot of tourists like to visit for shopping, well known cafes and restaurants, clubs etc. On the way to Naama Bay which was a short walk from where our hotel dropped us off, we had a guy follow us and lie basically saying that Naama is closed today for political reasons so to "come over here for shopping", as always a simple "la shukran" (no thank you) does the trick. So we journeyed on to Naama Bay to find that the place was still open, however shop owners were just tidying up from the floods I mentioned in my first post here. After 3 visits to Naama I most definitely would say I was a pro at haggling, often the guys giving in quoting they're haggling with me instead of the other way round haha.

Top Tip 1: Analyse the time of year you are visiting Egypt or any other destination. When it's low season you perhaps can get away with cheeky discounts but vendors are also known to take prices up to about 3 x more. 

Top tip 2: Know what you want! Browsing is great, but indecisiveness will have shop keepers bump prices up even more, believe me! Go in knowing what you want and roughly how much you want to pay for it.

Top Tip 3: Don't be afraid to ask! Ask for prices for all the items you want and keep them mentally noted. I often ask for prices a second time round just to make sure they were giving one amount instead of two, I did actually catch some people out. Naughty!

Top Tip 4: Shop around, don't settle! Often when you convert a first offer into pounds you think you're getting a really good deal, but let's face it that was only your first offer why accept it? Many times I'd come back to the first few vendors saying "your friend down the road is offering this for 10 EGP less" then generally they'd reply saying "Okay I'll give this to you for 45 instead of 50" only taking 5EGP off the price so obviously I'd then say "I'm going to shop with your friend instead". He'd then say he'd match the other vendors price where I'd then ask for a further discount as I hadn't haggled down the road yet (not entirely the truth), and basically get what a want! Hey presto!

Top tip 5: When shopping, never let shop keepers look in your purse! They'll size you up generally on how much you have to spend and charge you extra.

Top tip 6:  Arrive near the end of the day. Often, especially during low season vendors may not make much money in a day and happy to accept an offer - just make it reasonable!

Top tip 7: Come back at the end of your holiday! Why? These vendors will be happy to see you again and if you reccommed a friend to them are likely to give you a further discount for items inc your friend's... win win!

So those are my tips! Do you have any top tips for haggling whilst abroad? Share them with me below.

Check out my other Egypt posts...


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