You come to Saigon for the first time. You are curious about things. You want to buy some souvenirs for your friends and family. However, you feel worried because you do not have many experiences of shopping in Vietnam. So here are some tips to make your shopping easier:
You need to know some basic Vietnamese expressions about shopping
It is essential for a tourist to know some Vietnamese expressions when shopping in Vietnam, such as:
· How much is this? Cái này bao nhiêu? /kai-nei(y)-bao-gnieu/
· So expensive! Mắc quá! /mack-kwa!/
· Can I get a discount/price cut? Có thể giảm giá nữa không? /ko-the-zam-za-nua-kong?/
#1 Look around before making decision
While shopping in Saigon, especially in local markets, many people enjoy bargaining as a way of communication with local people! We recommend you to take a look around at the stores and vendors before deciding to purchase an item since the price can vary from one store to another. Buttttt, do not try everything and ask around if you do not intend to buy.
#2 Willing to bargain
Most of the markets or small shops in Saigon sell a much higher price than the actual price except supermarkets, shopping malls, and price-listed stores. In many cases, some sellers set prices for a product base on their first impression on the tourists – which means if they know that you are not the local or do not familiar with the market price for a certain kind of goods, they might charge you higher. Therefore, to avoid spending unworthy money, ready to bargain whenever you feel the price is unreasonable.
#3 Go shopping with local people
If you have friends or relatives in Vietnam, ask for their help. You will learn a trick or two from ones that have had experience shopping like a local.
#4 Turn away when necessary
If a deal cannot be reached, do not hesitate to walk away. Frequently sellers will change their minds and give you a more reasonable price.
By using these tips, you can still get your desired merchandise with the best price possible.
Note: Bargaining is recommended when going shopping at street vendors, small shops, local markets that do not have listed prices.
To sum up, shopping in Saigon requires patience and skills!