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Thread: Travel etiquette tips from your country

  1. #26
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Stop trying to haggle, you savages.

  2. #27
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Qantas
    I HATE haggling. Such a waste of time.

    But if you're in Mediterranean Europe, or the Middle East, or China (and probably other places I'm not familiar with) you're a fool not to haggle.

  3. #28
    But it's dumb in the US. Unless you're in a single location boutique, prices are typically set by somebody with a marketing degree in an office far away and the individual employees will have no power whatsoever to adjust the price.

    Different rules apply of course for major end items like furniture and cars that are sold by commission.

  4. #29
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2008
    Location: on a mission to civilize
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_Tarantula View Post
    But it's dumb in the US. Unless you're in a single location boutique, prices are typically set by somebody with a marketing degree in an office far away and the individual employees will have no power whatsoever to adjust the price.
    That might very well be the single best argument ever for shopping at a local mom and pop store instead of some corporate behemoth.

  5. #30
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2010
    Location: A Former Orange Grove
    Some places you are expected to haggle in California.

    1. Auto dealerships (with a few exceptions)
    2. Jewelry shops
    3. Musical instrument stores, such as Guitar Center.
    4. Furniture shops

    As for big box stores, I’ve seen rich Asian tourists haggle with counter people at Nordstrom, Sacks, and even Best Buy. Since it is common for them at home, some think it is cool here too. And you know what? They are successful at it.

    A lot of places have price-matching policies. If you bring in a paper ad or pull up an internet ad showing a lower price elsewhere, the competition will usually match it or even do better. No real need to haggle much.

    Now what would be super stupid would be to load up on $200 of groceries and then haggle at the checkout.

  6. #31
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by bjack View Post
    Now what would be super stupid would be to load up on $200 of groceries and then haggle at the checkout.
    Oh, that'd be an offense worthy of immediate execution.

    I don't really mind hagglers so much, provided they do it before the price has been set. It's the people who want to argue with you about the price after the job is done that irk me the most.
    Last edited by Renzatic; 2nd Jun 2017 at 18:07.

  7. #32
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2010
    Location: A Former Orange Grove
    That is very true, on the point about haggling after the work is done. As a service provider myself, I take steps to not allow that to occur. Doesn’t always work.

    Oh, and if you are in a store and the checkout lane says 10 items or less (it should be 10 items or fewer), and you have 12 items and there is no one else around... OK, go for it. But if you have 100 items, a screaming baby, and all the other lines are 3 deep in customers, DO NOT use the 10 items or less line. This happened to me 3 days ago. Lucky for me, a nice checkout lady pulled me out of the 4 deep line, opened up a closed lane, and checked me out with my 2 items. So a bad situation that I was tolerating became a situation of kindness directed to me. That made me smile.

  8. #33
    Moderator
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: Wales
    I wouldn't count it as haggling as such but, depending on what company it is (notably Wickes and PC World in this instance) you can persuade them that a hefty discount is an excellent idea. Strangely enough, depending on their current sales target, they can agree with you.

  9. #34
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Lyon, France
    In the UK - respect queues. If people are standing in a line, you join that line. Doesn't even matter if you have no business there - join the line. Then, when you get to the front, simply apologise for being in the wrong line and continue with your day.

  10. #35
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    I heard from some marines that on a long voyage they started a line, then when other marines joined the line, asked them to hold their place and left. It took a few dozen men about an hour before they started asking what they were in line for and nobody knew.

  11. #36
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: Cologne
    I once read that smiling at another man in Russia might be considered "gay" and worthy of a punch in the face. Such a fun attitude!
    In Germany you mostly just get puzzled looks. You can see them racing their minds. Do I know that guy?! Should I greet him? Sometimes though you get a smile back. Completely worth it.
    Also I'm not sure if the art of complaining (about the weather, your friends, them up there) is a specific German thing, but I think we perfected it, as usual.

  12. #37
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    I dunno if that has as much to do with good old fashioned German efficiency as it does the fact that German is a language that naturally lends itself to arguing and complaining.

    "Das bier ist gut, ja?"

    "NEIN! DAS BIER IST SCHLECHT!"

  13. #38
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: Cologne
    That's actually one of the few things I never hear anyone complain about.

  14. #39
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2002
    Location: Girl with the Patreon Tattoo
    Any German beer that isn't Kölsch is schlecht. j/k

    I would argue that us frogs ain't too bad at complaining all the time as well.

  15. #40
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Oh, I got one. Sarcasm in Japan -- don't bother. Japanese people are much more likely to take anything you say just at face value, especially if they haven't lived in the west.

    Also, might be a good idea to hold back on jokes in general until you know what's considered funny in the culture and what's not.

  16. #41
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by Kolya View Post
    That's actually one of the few things I never hear anyone complain about.
    But they still do, just because German is one of those languages that's just fun to shout in. It's all right angles, lends itself well to the loud.

    Quote Originally Posted by Briareos H
    I would argue that us frogs ain't too bad at complaining all the time as well.
    The French, on the other hand, have the totally opposite problem. To a foreign ear, it's nigh impossible to sound angry in French. At worst, it comes off as someone being moderately indignant about something.

    "Donc, j’ai vu cette moufette mort sur la route l’autre jour..."

    "Wow. They must be talking about, like, the philosophical vagaries of romantic literature or something, I bet."

  17. #42
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2011
    Location: Wild and Wooly West of Ireland
    Refusing a cup o' tea from the lady of the house is a no no in Ireland.
    Nothing good will come of it.


    Spot on, Chris.

  18. #43
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2007
    Location: Alberta, Canada
    To add one more thing to the Canada guide.

    Do not ask anybody if they know so-and-so from Toronto. I live nearly 4000 km from Toronto, you can fit most of Europe between me and Toronto.
    Most Canadians feel this way, even if they live in Windsor.

  19. #44
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: Cologne
    Quote Originally Posted by Renzatic View Post
    But they still do, just because German is one of those languages that's just fun to shout in. It's all right angles, lends itself well to the loud.
    I understand that this is a common perception. But you see, I whisper loving things to my wife in German before falling asleep. SCHLÄFST DU SCHON ODER WILLST DU NOCH EIN BIER? There're no right angles in it, just pure sweetness. But I can live with a small benign stereotype.

  20. #45
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Admittedly, when you hear someone who speaks it natively, German has an almost bubbly quality to it. But still, yeah, schläfst is a pretty angular word.

    But don't feel bad. At least German has internal consistency. Unlike English, which is just, you know, whatever. That that exists exists in that that that that exists exists in.

  21. #46
    Member
    Registered: May 2004

  22. #47
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Mong. Mong. Borley.

  23. #48
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: 1, Rotation: 0
    Zwischen oder und und und und und und und und und oder ist immer ein Leerzeichen.
    (Between or and and and and and and and and and or there's always a space character.)

  24. #49
    New Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    Location: Israel
    I know us Israelis are perceived by westerners as loud, direct (ok, rude), opinionated and have little regard for privacy.
    This is more evident in business communications. I personally viewed funny incidents between Israelis and other nationalities during my professional career.
    We are always right, the opposition is always wrong. Learn to accept that.
    We like to view ourselves as passionate, warm people.
    I think these traits are common among mediterraneans and of course all over the mideast.
    We also like to haggle.

    Accordingly, there is little in the way of code of behavior we find offensive.
    The average Israeli can speak passable to good English (we start learning it on 1st grade)
    If you strike a conversation with a local I would advise staying away from politics or religion. These are delicate subjects and will immediately escalate into heated debate.
    not so with personal finance or marital/family matters (or any other personal subjects)

  25. #50
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by sharonbn View Post
    If you strike a conversation with a local I would advise staying away from politics or religion. These are delicate subjects and will immediately escalate into heated debate.
    I think this is something of a universal standard these days.

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