Turkey is a country on two continents, affected by both Asian and European influences, and thus very vivid, versatile and interesting. Turkish people are very open and hospitable, and Turkish markets are full of colors, smells and noises that will affect all your senses. The markets are where versatility and richness of Turkish culture are probably most obvious. Haggling or bargaining is one of the important aspects of buying at markets in Turkey. While haggling is not so common in Western culture, especially for the items of relatively small value, at markets in Turkey you are even expected and encouraged to haggle over everything.
If you are still not accustomed to the prices, make sure to examine them at a few shops before you begin haggling and shopping, in order to get a certain insight. Before you start lowering the price of the item you want to buy, you should determine how much you are willing to pay for it. If you hear from someone else that he bought the same item for a lower price, do not worry – if you have your price limit and you have reached it, it means that you got the item for the value you determined.
Once you see the item you like, do not be overly enthusiastic, because the sellers might take advantage of it when determining the price. Let the seller quote the first price. If he happen to asks you how much you will pay, return the question and ask for a price. The sellers usually quote much
higher price than they expect you to pay, so it is now your turn to start lowering the price. If you have agreed on the price, then it means that you will pay the item. In case you didn’t make the agreement, do not be afraid to walk away. You can return later and then you sometimes may expect more success in haggling than the first time. In case you are not too comfortable with haggling, you can achieve a discount by buying a few items from the same seller, and he or she will usually offer the goods for a lower total price.
Although haggling may feel awkward and even unpleasant to those who are not used to it, when you visit a Turkish market, you should simply embrace this custom and try to enjoy it. You will see, it will soon become a very fun activity, and you are very likely to become successful in it!