Shopping and Bargaining Tips
Haggling is a way of life in Latin America and is expected in markets and small shops. Please ask your guide for a few tips! Anything from local handicrafts to designer clothing can be bought in Latin America and is generally at a lower cost than your home country (especially in Peru, Bolivia, Guatemala and Ecuador). Gold and silver is also very affordable, particularly in Peru. Please beware when returning home (particularly Australia) as some handicrafts are made of wood and may contain seeds!
As a rule, when haggling go for half of what you’re offered and work your way up! You may need to haggle for anything ... from a souvenir to a taxi fare!
On many of our tours, we try to take customers to local markets rather than the expensive tourist orientated bazaars. These markets have a higher level of locally-made products and allow you to give something back to the local community, rather than a middle man.
We encourage you to haggle a little over prices. Be aware, however, that a few simple dollars for you could mean feeding a family for the artisan, and many of these people earn the minimum wage of around US$150 per month or less.