What is the best way to bargain in Egypt? (How to get the best price)?

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10 Responses to “What is the best way to bargain in Egypt? (How to get the best price)?”

  1. Amy K says:

    Learn how to say and read the numbers in Arabic (especially 1-20). I went to Egypt in March and I learned the numbers so I could bargain better for myself and my friends. I look Egyptian (although I’m not), so most people thought I was Egyptian and usually would start out at a relatively decent starting price. I’m not sure how they do it for foreigners, but you will really impress/surprise them if you pretend to speak Arabic. Also, be confident. Go in strong with your price without seeming uncomfortable or shy or weak because then they will know they can get you at whatever price you want. I know this is bad, but, if you are a girl, flirting a bit doesn’t hurt. I wouldn’t say I flirted, but sometimes I would smile a lot and act overly friendly just to get my price. Hey, you gotta do what you can.

    For taxis, what I would do is ask the drivers how much to this location. Just say the name of the location, then "bikam da." When they would say a price, I would say half of the price and keep repeating it over and over. Slowly, I would go up 1 or 2 Egyptian pounds at a time, but usually we would end up at the mid-way point. If they said 20, I would say 10, and we’d usually end up at 15.

    When you’re in stores, the store owners realllly want to sell you things, so pretend you are really interested in whatever you’re looking at. Ask them the price and when they say it, look really disappointed like there is no way you will buy it at that price. They will usually start bargaining down for you because they want to sell it to you, especially if you are a foreigner or a woman (if the store owner is male). I was in a store looking casually at this carved elephant thing because my friend is obsessed with elephants but it was 100 Egyptian pounds. I wasn’t really interested in buying it, but the store owner was harassing me about it, so I just pretended like there was no way I would pay such a high price. I kept refusing to buy it until he brought it down to about 20 or 30 Egyptian pounds…not bad, eh?

    Bargaining can be a huge pain at times, but I found it to be pretty interesting because you never find that here in the US or in Europe unless you’re going to a flea market or something. I was the official bargainer for me and my 2 friends because neither of them knew any Arabic.

  2. oldguy says:

    bargaining is basically an "on the job training" thing. practice makes perfect but there are several things you need to know before you bargain. 1) know what the top price you are willing to pay. 2) have an idea what the going price of what you want is. 3) get a "feel" of what his lowest price will be. 4) ask what the price is first then make a reasonable first offer. 5) if he counters with a slightly lower the you counter with a slightly higher until a price is agreed. Bargaining is part if the enjoyment of shopping so don’t get insulted too easily.

  3. yusdzkhamim says:

    Try to bargain in Arabic… Hurmm.. Be nice to them… Ask em nicely… Be nice !

  4. bellmovb says:

    Have an Egyptian do it for you.

  5. Hophop says:

    have an idea about the normal price before u go buy it, as example if u know there r something cost 100 go tell the seller i wanna this one by 80 so u may get it with 90. good luck

  6. Egyptian says:

    ASk about the thing you want to buy an Egyptian right on the street you are walking at . Mostly you will get the right price.

  7. katerina c says:

    I hate bargaining, although when in Egypt you have not an alternative solution.
    I will bring here my personal experience when I was going shopping.
    What oldguy refers – as general rules – is valid, but I would add this: it is very important to control your behavior in your contacts with this people. This people had a huge history and not an equivalent present and they will never stand that their decisions will be underevaluated (at this point, in prices settings). A friendly, honest and sweet behavior at this moment, will be mostly appreciated.
    This was my way to get more, even if I did not know the current prices.


  8. lilyjebb2430 says:

    Try and learn a bit of the language, even " no thank you too expensive" will help a great deal as they wont think your some tourist they can rip off. I know in morrocco if you say no and walk away the price usually drops straight away, sometimes down to half the starting price!

    Just only barter if you feel comfortable with it, always take it well if they wont lower the price, just walk away as it can easily turn into an arguement.

  9. Barneyboy says:

    A little trick I use if they are not coming down in price just say ok I will go somewhere else in the street/market to buy, I found prices tumble if they think you are taking your business somewhere else. You do have to be tough to get a good price, they will try everything but stand your ground.

  10. basilboy1 says:

    i love bartering start off with a cheap price if you start to walk away they will come down to your price it works every time

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