My husband and I are staying at the waters resort in khao lak for first time in Thailand. My question is about bartering. For trips do we barter or is it just at market bartering goes on? Thanks any advice appreciated
For trips you shop around for best price at the various tour shops. You haggle for prices on the market on stalls selling tourist goods but not at local stalls where prices are marked and fixed and so low that trying to get them any lower is not the done thing.
Bartering means to exchange or trade goods. I guess you mean bargaining.
Food markets - no
Tourist markets, maybe, yes if you are buying quantity
Tours - no unless you're a large group.
Rule of thumb - if you have to ask about BARGAINING, then you probably can't do it.
If you know how to bargain, you also will know when to do it and how to get a result....it isn't a question of can or can't, the right person can bargain EVERYWHERE.Edited: 11 November 2017, 10:21
I have never tried to bargain for a tour. Some tips from an expert bargainer...only engage when you really want something, be happy and smile, it has to be a win win for both parties, be prepared to walk away, don't walk away or haggle over paltry amounts of money (to you).
(Bartering is the exchange of goods/services without currency)
I agree with Mrs Smith.
"only engage when you really want something, be happy and smile, it has to be a win win for both parties, be prepared to walk away, don't walk away or haggle over paltry amounts of money (to you)."
I have lived in Thailand for a long time and have bargained with everyone from Car dealers through supermarkets, banks to small businesses. ut the deal has to be worth it it.
i'm not into arguing with an old lady on a market over 10 baht for some veggies. - but then I know what the ballpark price should be...
There's nothing that makes me wince more than seeing some tourist arguing over the price of some inconsequential trinket because they read about "haggling" in a guide book - they adopt a quasi-patronising racist attitude towards a local vendor and often as not walk, away having been grossly overcharged because the vendor realised what a schmuk they were.
Even worse I see people "bargaining" when they have no intention of buying.
Vendors have costs to meet - usually, they need to feed a family, often goods are on SoR in tourist markets and they are not the final arbiter of the selling price.
so if you must engage in bargaining - be polite - mentally take a step back and look at yourself and ask "Am being a total fool here?"
Before you start telling people to ask whether they are being a fool, just refer to the OP and accept that a first time visitor to Thailand may have more experience than you do of customs in practices in other countries they have visited where customs and practices over haggling or bargaining so it is a fair question that deserves a fair answer not a lecture.
If they have to ask they don't.
And actually the reason I posted on this site was because it is usually India I go where haggling is standard practice. I thought it best to check here before arriving in Thailand what the situation is with haggling as I wouldn't want to offend anyone.