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How to Bargain in Vietnam?


Bargain when buying something is fairly common in Vietnam, especially in Vietnamese local markets. For foreign visitors, getting to know how to bargain in Vietnam is worthwhile as it would make it possible for you to get the best price as well as communicate with the native. Here are some useful tips for bargaining in Vietnam.

Why You Should Bargain in Vietnam

The act of bargaining in Vietnam does not mean that you are disrespecting the sellers. It is simply a method for getting the best deal between you and the sellers, giving you a good chance to buy products at a considerably lower price. Besides, you should not keep the thought that bargaining might damage your reputation as almost all Vietnamese people make bargain whenever they shop at local markets.

In some tourist attractions, foreign travelers are likely to be overcharged more frequently than in other places as many Vietnamese people consider foreigners to be wealthy and willing to pay a great amount of money. It is another reason that you should bargain when buying something as it would help to reduce that discriminatory attitude among sellers.

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Useful Tips for Bargaining in Vietnam

Learning Some Simple Phrases in Vietnamese

It is an essential and most effective way for you to reach a successful bargain on your Vietnam travel. The first thing in Vietnamese you should learn is how to say numbers, as it would become extremely helpful when discussing prices with local people. Besides, it is advisable for you to know some simple phrases in Vietnamese including how to ask for the price and express your feeling.

Start the Bargaining at Half of the Initial Price

Since many merchants tend to ask foreigners to pay much higher than they do local people, it is advisable for you to offer half of the initial price at first. It might sound crazy but don't worry, this is how bargaining in Vietnam begins.

Many sellers often refuse your offer at first with the reason that they are selling products with the best price and quality alike. In such cases, you should continue bargaining and gradually raise the price up until both of you reach an agreement. Before getting the deal, you should not show the seller any kind of interest in the thing you want to buy because this could make it more difficult for you to get the most reasonable price.

Shop around to Know the Market Price

As a foreigner, you will not know the market price and might feel hesitant to negotiate with the sellers. So this tip for bargaining in Vietnam should be helpful for you. In order to know the market price, shopping around before deciding to buy something is highly advisable. This would not only make it possible for you to compare the differences in price among shops but also help you to get the preferable price when bargaining in Vietnamese markets.

Read more on 10 Things to Buy in a Vietnamese Market and Top 8 Night Markets in Ho Chi Minh City.

Pretend to Walk Away

Walking away is always an effective way when bargain. This method should be used when you are nearly getting the price you want, but the merchant does not agree with you. If you walk away, many sellers will call you back and give you the price that you want.

Observe and Learn from Local Buyers

When shopping in Vietnamese local markets, you should try to observe the way locals buy something and how they bargain with the sellers. By observing and imitating local people, you can find your way to blend in Vietnamese culture and know if there is a significant difference in the quoted price between you and local people.

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Maintain a Good Attitude

As bargaining is generally a discussion in which both sides should be respected, you should avoid negative attitudes toward sellers. You could also consider bargaining a chance to practice your Vietnamese and persuasive skills so that you can enjoy it. Always remember to be friendly and patient as many local sellers find it challenging to communicate with foreigners. Besides, a tip for bargaining in Vietnam successful is that you should show a little sense of humor; it will break the ice between you and the sellers.

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Summary of How to Bargain in Vietnam

Shopping in local markets could become easier and more interesting once you know how to bargain in Vietnam. Although it could be impossible to reach the best deal all of the time, bargaining appears to be a good chance for you to communicate with local people and explore Vietnamese culture.


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Guest - Tracy Tran on Saturday, 04 January 2020 13:59

Nice tips but I imagine it would be a huge challenge. Even though you can learn some Vietnamese phrases, everything will just be so confusing and you can't help but feeling lost

Nice tips but I imagine it would be a huge challenge. Even though you can learn some Vietnamese phrases, everything will just be so confusing and you can't help but feeling lost
Guest - Sonia Webster on Friday, 25 October 2019 21:04

Leah really saved me from being overcharged in Ben Thanh when I was joining their tours Go with these tour guides if you don't want to lose your money

Leah really saved me from being overcharged in Ben Thanh when I was joining their tours :D Go with these tour guides if you don't want to lose your money
Guest - Vernon Baker on Saturday, 19 October 2019 23:44

would recommend to go with a local to avoid this

would recommend to go with a local to avoid this
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