• Posted by CERC India
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10 tips on how to strike a good bargain

Bargaining is an art that requires two basic skills – the ability and patience to do some research (or shop around) and communication skills. Here are some tips to help you master the art of bargaining.


1. Do your homework: Shop around and ask a few shopkeepers to get an idea of the prices before attempting your first deal.

2. Fix your budget: Decide how much you want to pay for a particular item and stick to it. Know the highest price you are willing to pay, and what price would make you feel it was a fair bargain.

3. Build a relationship: A good rapport is important. Spend a few minutes talking to the seller before starting negotiations. Smile and crack a joke. Mention that you will refer friends if you get a good bargain.

4. When in doubt, cut in half: Never make the first offer. If you have no clue about the value of the item, just cut the price by 50-75% and see how the seller reacts.

5. Play hard to get: Be cool and casual and never show you are excited or keen about the purchase. This will give you the upper-hand in the deal.

6. Look for flaws: Another good strategy to increase your bargaining power is to find minor flaws or defects in the product.

7. Get the timing right: Festive season is a good time for bargaining. What time of the day you choose to shop is also important. The salesperson will be tired at the end of the day and may be willing to give in. Similarly, at the start of the business day, he may be keen to initiate the day’s sales.

8. Ask for a deal on multiple items: See if the seller will give you a better price if you buy in bulk.

9. Offer to pay in cash: This is preferred by many sellers and they will be more willing to strike a deal.

10. Be prepared to leave: If the seller starts looking away or frowns, it’s time to leave. You should also leave to indicate you are not going to budge. Walk slowly so that he can spot you in the crowd if he decides to call you back.

Sources: The Economic Times, www.wanderloveworld.com, www.travelplanet.in, www.ricksteves.com

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