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Old 08-01-2007, 11:15 PM
 
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For those of you who travel to Alaska, particularly via cruise ship, do you try to "bargain" in the local businesses when you're in port? You know...haggle? If so...why? This question is for Americans. This doesn't seem to exist with regards to Canadians and Europeans.

I've experienced a lot of rudeness from Americans who want to "haggle" over prices. Is this how it's done in the lower 48?

Some of the cruise ship owned jewelry stores that follow the ships like a flock of vultures to the Caribbean in the winter and Alaska in the summer do some bargaining from what I hear. Maybe this is what's giving the impression that it's common practice up here.

If a business will bargain with you, they have set their prices higher in expectation of that and by that very fact are unscrupulous to begin with (I'm not talking about parts of the world where this is common practice and just the way that things are done, btw).

if you gotta ask, ask, it's no big deal. You may as well try I suppose. But why the rudeness about it when a store clerk tells you that their prices aren't negotiable?

I'm curious as to why this is happening and getting worse every year.
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Old 08-01-2007, 11:32 PM
 
Location: Alaska
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I would like someone to explain to me why downtown Juneau right now looks like "little Tijuana"? for 4 months, then returns to normal.

huh?....anybody????
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Old 08-02-2007, 12:19 AM
 
Location: The Great State of Texas, Finally!
5,231 posts, read 7,756,931 times
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Default ???

Gosh, I don't know. Whenever I go to Juneau, I don't hang with the white tennis shoe crowd buying cheap "Alaskan Stuff" Made in China. I am always on the trails!!

I don't think haggling is a standard practice in the lower 48. I know haggling is encouraged when one travels to Mexico---in fact, the merchants respect you more when you do bargain, but I didn't think it was a standard American practice, lower 48 or not.

Cobolt
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Old 08-02-2007, 12:27 AM
 
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I work with regional art created by people who live in the North, not with authentic Chinese totem poles.

While I agree that you'll have a better experience on the trails and tours than slopping around shopping, remember that a good majority of those off the ships are over 65.

But as the cruise ship companies have begun targeting a younger demographic, we see more and more baby boomers. They're the ones who seem to relish combat shopping the most.

It truly perplexes me.

Last edited by Metlakatla; 08-02-2007 at 12:35 AM..
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Old 08-02-2007, 12:41 AM
 
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Quote:
I would like someone to explain to me why downtown Juneau right now looks like "little Tijuana"? for 4 months, then returns to normal.
Well that's easily answered with one word: carpetbaggers.

I know independent artists who've been priced out of their retail spaces because people from outside can and will pay higher rents.

It's a disservice to the local communities as well as to the tourists.
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Old 08-03-2007, 01:30 PM
 
Location: North Pittsburgh
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I was a tourist from the lower 48 who spent 3 weeks in Alaska in June. I didn't haggle (but then I didn't buy much - like someone said, I'm not interested in stuff made in China and Tiwan). However, I was with shopper's and they didn't haggle either nor did I see anyone else haggling. It is not a practice in the lower 48. Are you sure these "hagglers" are US citizens?

On a side note - There were some people on the cruise ship who were born in the US that didn't seem to understand that Alaska is part of the US.
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:29 PM
 
16,105 posts, read 16,094,246 times
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I don't work in the kind of place that deals in items from China or Tawain.

Quote:
Are you sure these "hagglers" are US citizens?
The ones I'm complaining about are. When someone from another culture tries to bargain, we know it's just because that's accepted practice where they are from and its not as annoying. But yes, I've had U.S. citizens off the ships be very rude because I can't "give them a deal". I just wonder if somehow they're getting the impression that we do things that way here.

Quote:
On a side note - There were some people on the cruise ship who were born in the US that didn't seem to understand that Alaska is part of the US.
LOL--there was a survey done by the Anchorage Daily News--I think the winter before last--it was distributed in some places in the lower 48 and 5% of the respondents thought that Alaska was a different country.

Last edited by Metlakatla; 08-03-2007 at 03:49 PM..
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Old 08-03-2007, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
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I don't haggle, but it IS becoming more common everywhere. I have been in business in Beverly Hills for 28 years and I can assure you that many people expect to "negotiate" the price. No one expects to pay the retail price. The higher the price, the more likely it will be negotiated.
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Old 08-03-2007, 09:37 PM
 
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In my observations, negotiating is somewhat practiced at yard sales and flea markets but not at retail gift and souvenir stores here in the northeast. Given the nature of your place of business as a native arts store, maybe certain customers are assuming your the artist/owner and are expecting to negotiate only to be informed otherwise. Like you said in the cruise ship thread, there are people that want native art at Chinese prices but I would think their the minority.
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Old 08-03-2007, 10:09 PM
 
16,105 posts, read 16,094,246 times
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Thank you, MinuteMan, for understanding that I don't work with Chinese junk.
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