Be price savvy and barter on the high street!

Be price savvy and barter on the high street!

Bartering on the high street is something that many of us wouldn’t even consider, as many think the price you see is the price you pay. Well this isn’t necessarily the case because if you don’t ask, you won’t get… and what’s the worst that can happen? They say “no”!


By law, until money’s changed hands on a product or service, no contract has been agreed. What you need is a bit of ‘chutzpah’ – which is a bit of audacity mixed with a twinkle in the eye! Mix this in with polite, firm haggling and you will be surprised with the results.

Aggressive haggling on the other hand is more likely to see no discount offered or at worse, you’ll be asked to leave the shop.


So who are the top high street stores to haggle with?

Money Saving Expert did a poll and below are the top 10 high street stores which hagglers had the most success in:


The top 10 high street stores to haggle in
  1. Homebase
  1. TK Maxx
  1. Currys/PC World
  1. Tesco
  1. B&Q
  1. Debenhams
4= John Lewis 61%
  1. Sainsbury’s
4= Wickes 61%
  1. Asda
4,274 people were polled in Oct 2013 – only retailers where at least 100 people attempted to haggle are included. (1) Of those who tried. Figures are rounded, but order is correct. See full results.


Some tips for haggling:

  1. Beginners – go for something extra for free
  2. Discounted items – if an items already been discounted then there’s often more flexibility on price
  3. Bulk buying – stock up on one or combination of items or go with some friends who want to buy the same/similar item
  4. Aim for assistant manager or supervisor level – they often have more negotiating power
  5. Buy an extended warranty – staff often have a sales target on selling extended warranties. Use this to negotiate your price, then cancel the policy and get a full refund – as you are free to change your mind within 45 days or purchasing.
  6. Silence – a common sales trick is to say silent, making you feel awkward and so accepting the price to fill the silence. Don’t – keep talking.
  7. Look for imperfections – scratches or dents on electrical items or marks on clothes will make them more difficult to sell, so ask away! Remember that you still retain your consumer rights if something else goes wrong with the product and you can still get a refund.
  8. Go armed with price information – many retailers will match an internet price if pushed
  9. Out of season products – you are more likely to get a discount on a product that they aren’t expecting you to buy at that time of year like a lawn mower in winter, a heater in summer, etc.
  10. Pick your moment – quieter times are the best times to haggle, such as mid-week and mid-morning.

It’s not just the high street shops that you can haggle with, other retail and service sectors are open to negotiations if you ask.  Different sectors call for different strategies – visit this Money Saving Expert post for more advice.

 Main image credit

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