the best tips for bargaining in Morocco
Negotiating in Morocco is a key point of a stay in this country.
It is not necessarily the country where everything is negotiated but it is necessary to negotiate hard for certain purchases, in particular souvenirs and taxis;)
The purpose of this post is to give you some tips for negotiating in Morocco at best and above all not to get ripped off when shopping in Morocco.
Before listing these tips, one point to note, food is not negotiable in Morocco. Except rare abuse on the part of the seller. The advertised price is the same for everyone and there is often even a card showing the prices. This is a rather positive point for those who do not like negotiation.
Note: most of these tips are also valid outside Morocco!
Get a rough idea of the real price : THE BEST TIPS FOR BARGAINING IN MOROCCO
First point and probably the most important. To avoid being scammed and paying for a product at its true value, it is better to know the approximate price of the product.
Be careful not to make a mistake in your estimate. For handicrafts, for example, or beauty products, the finish and quality of the product can double or even more than the price of the product.
To have a good estimate of the price of an object, I suggest 2 solutions:
– inquire beforehand on the internet or compare to the price of the same object in France. If it is a local product, it will necessarily be much cheaper;)
– ask the price in several shops. The starting range of different sellers will already eliminate certain prices;) For example, if you ask the price of black soap in Morocco, after 3/4 requests in different shops you will probably have a slightly more precise idea
After having an idea of the price of the product, it is much easier to negotiate and one is much more confident for the negotiation. We are not in the situation where we negotiate an object for 5 euros without knowing if it does not really cost 8 or 10 😉
Set the maximum price you want to set : THE BEST TIPS FOR BARGAINING IN MOROCCO
To negotiate well and not be fooled by the seller’s negotiation, before starting the negotiation, you must have in mind the maximum price that one wishes to put for an object.
If you know that the desired object can be considered to be obtained at a good price at 10 euros but that you are ready to put 12 euros for example, set the limit of 12 euros.
If the seller offers you 20 or 25 or even 30 euros, offer him what you consider to be a good price, namely 10 euros. And don’t let go. Even if it goes down, stay on your 10 euros. As it goes down, if you feel it becomes complicated, go up to 12 euros but not 1 more.
If he doesn’t let go at 12, go!
Attempt Departure Without Purchase : THE BEST TIPS FOR BARGAINING IN MOROCCO
To follow up on the previous point precisely, if after a few minutes you do not agree, you leave his shop.
Chances are the seller will call you a few seconds later, or even catch you on the street. He may then possibly drop the negotiation at your price.
If not, try another store or come back in the afternoon or the next day (if it’s a souvenir you hold dear, for example), it may also work.
The Group Purchasing Technique : THE BEST TIPS FOR BARGAINING IN MOROCCO
When leaving for Morocco, if for example you want to buy 3 or 4 pairs of slippers for yourself and your loved ones, the best technique for obtaining a better price is as follows.
As with the rest, keep in mind the right price for the product. Attention, little parenthesis for the slippers, there are many different qualities, different leathers, different methods for sewing or even glued slippers (yuck). Make no mistake, it can start at 2 or 3 euros to go up a lot higher. At 7/8 euros you can find a good pair of slippers, 100% leather and sewn by hand.
To start the negotiation, ask for the price for a slipper, if the seller asks you, insist that you only want one pair. Negotiate the price to get a good rate.
At this point, after reflection, say that you would take several. 4 for example. Multiply the price obtained by 4. And renegotiate on this price. To sell 4 pairs in a single sale, the seller will necessarily be willing to make additional efforts.
You will then get a better price than if you had asked for 4 pairs of slippers for entry;)
Choosing the right shop
The choice of store where you want to shop is important.
First, in the medinas in Morocco, the location of the store can have a big impact on the rent of the store owner. A shop located at the entrance of the souks of Marrakech near Jemaa el Fna square costs more than a shop lost in the depths of the medina. Likewise for Fez, where certain pieces of Talaa Kebira (the largest artery in the medina of Fez) are much more in demand than others.
Avoid these corners there, to cover their additional load, we see that the prices are higher! So choose a shop a little more unnoticed without necessarily looking for the lost shop at the end of an alley;)
2nd clarification on the subject, in Morocco, as in many other tourist countries, there are many shops for tourists only. Bonded slippers, poor quality kohl, diluted essential oils, industrial ceramics, fake argan oil or even false saffron … Avoid these stores at all costs, in addition to buying a poor quality product, you will not have a better price because the primary objective of these sellers is to earn money on the ignorance of these products by tourists.
Speaking Some Arabic Words Can Help
Even if I am not a fan of this technique, speaking a few words of Arabic can initiate conversation and negotiation in a positive way. The seller feels an interest in his language or culture and he will be necessarily more friendly.
I am not a fan of this technique because I consider that either we are interested in the language or not. Placing 2 words in the conversation seems more like a habit of tourists looking for a change of scenery 😉
Smile And Laugh
Crucial point: the atmosphere between the seller and the buyer. If you get annoyed by the negotiation, it is very badly started.
Like everywhere, be polite, have a smile, relax the atmosphere, laugh with the seller. If he talks to you about your trip or your country, answer, it’s always more positive than saying: “Quick, I don’t like to negotiate, give me your price”.
Even if you do not like to negotiate, know that it is compulsory here, it is part of the habits and even between premises, we negotiate. Of course, we do not start from the same starting price 😉
Show That We Know The Product
Showing that you know what you are going to buy helps negotiation.
If you show that you know the product, the seller will suspect that you have an idea of the real price of the item. He will not try to sell it to you at 2 or 3 times the price 😉
To do this, show the object’s faults if it is a handcrafted product. If it’s a food product like spices, show that you buy it at home, that you use it for this or that.
The negotiation will start from lower and the seller will hope less to come across a tourist who will buy at 3 times the real price!
Touts and fake guides are very numerous in Morocco. Despite the fact that they are in the crosshairs of the tourist police, there are still a lot of them in the medinas of Morocco. Know one thing, they live on a commission system. If they take you to a store and you buy something, they will get a commission of 25 to 50% of the amount spent. Clearly, if you spend 200 DH in the shop, the reel can touch up to 100 DH.
You will then understand that the seller must necessarily sell his product at least twice its cost price. A very bad deal for you and for him;)
One thing, therefore: systematically enter a shop alone, not even with an official guide, some of them (most?) Have the same practices!