December 3, 2011 in Category Bangkok,Scarlett Adventures...,Thailand

Haggle For Goods

Although I came away with a beautiful dress, my first attempt at haggling in Bangkok’s floating markets was pretty shit.

I stuttered… My big staring eyes made it quite obvious I had no idea what was going on as she punched numbers into a calculator and screamed ‘Buy…BUY’ at me, and as it turns out, I had the exchange rate completely wrong in my head the whole time anyway. So when I saw some authentic Thai Boxing shorts for the boy, I figured this would be my time to shine.

The four foot, 15 stone, Thai lady running the stall didn’t seem any different from any of the other owners when she started ridiculously high with 850 Bahts (£17)…

I started at 100 (£2).

What I didn’t expect was the raucous laughter that followed…not only that but she looked over at her mates on the stall next door who, following suit, also burst into hysterics.

Not only were they practically bend double laughing (or ROTFLing if you’re under 16 and probably a ‘beliber’) but some of them were actually pointing at me whilst they laughed – talk about ganging up on someone. Trust me to find the feistiest little Thai in the market to try to win my haggle queen crown with. She typed her revised amount into the little calculator; 800 Baht (£16).

She was quite obviously having a laugh, they were pretty amazing, but not that amazing… so I joined in her game. I looked at the calculator, looked at her… looked back at the calculator and burst into this, really horrible, fake banshee laughter.

Imagine Janice from friends… on smack.

As I was holding my stomach and wiping the fake tears from my eyes, my Dad came over and joined in.

Now I had a wing man – even if he did sound like Woody woodpecker.

After 20 minutes of haggling back and forth; punching ever more stupid amounts into the calculator, cries of “Robbery, daylight robbery” and so much fake laughter I came away with jaw ache, we finally agreed on 220 bahts (just over £4) – pretty impressive don’t you think?

Even as I handed the money over she was giggling away and trying to carry on the game whilst stroking my Dad’s arm. I think she wanted to shag fancied him – bit awkward.


7 comments… read them below or add one

Adam J Williams December 4, 2011 at 12:38 am

This is what you needed when you were buying your Arabic Blackberry


TheWorldOrBust December 4, 2011 at 4:19 am

I feel your pain, i am so bad at math, that when i have to do conversion rates in my head i always f it up…


nod 'n' smile December 4, 2011 at 4:35 am

This post made my day! I may need to try this technique during my travels. :)


Carola December 4, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Pretty hillarious, especially the part about the vendor lady wanting to shag your dad :0)


Jenny December 6, 2011 at 5:12 pm

That’s awesome! You have earned your crown 😛

& when you say “banshee laugh” I don’t think Janice… I think Naga from the anime SLAYERS (google NAGA’S LAUGH & you’ll see what I mean) xD


Jenn December 7, 2011 at 8:36 pm

I’ve never had to experience any such thing (as I’ve only gone from the USA to Canada and had my money switched ahead of time). But good for you–because it worked!! I probably wouldn’t have faired so well!!

Cheers, Jenn


jade December 15, 2011 at 5:34 am

I’m horrible at haggling. Also- haggling is a strange word- haha! When we were in Hong Kong at the Jade Market I had no idea what I was saying or how much anything cost. I left with a Jade bracelet- but really have no idea how much I ended up saving… if anything!


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