Bargaining for a better price is a way of life in Tijuana. If you're unsure how to do it, follow these steps to save some money.
- Know the price of the item. If you haven't shopped for it at home, look around several shops to get an idea of the going price.
- Bring cash. You will pay more if you use a credit card.
- Compare quality and price at several shops before making a purchase. Pay attention to the location of a shop you like or you may not be able to find it again!
- Shops that actively solicit your presence are most open to bargaining. Some of the nicer shops that don't have anyone standing on the sidewalk trying to drag you in are more likely to have fixed prices.
- When you're ready to buy, don't express a keen interest in the item. It weakens your negotiating position.
- Ask the price, but unless it's marked firm don't settle for it. Currency marked with a $ can be pesos or dollars. It it doesn't say, ask.
- Wait until the shopkeeper makes several rounds of reductions before you counter with a lower price than he is quoting.
- When the shopkeeper reaches a price close to what you want to pay, counter with your price and be firm.
- If you're unsure about the item, or can't get the price you want, turn away and start to leave the shop. The shopkeeper will either come down further or you'll know where the rock-bottom price lies.
- If you don't like to haggle, shop in one of the stores that have fixed prices. They're fair and you don't have to negotiate.
- If someone else who's with you likes to bargain, let them make your purchase for you.
- Keep expensive jewelry out of sight, it weakens your position. Turn your ring inside your palm so only the band shows. Keep expensive watches pushed up your sleeve out of sight.