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Thai language forum

Shopping - Thai Style

Posted by AjarnPasa on 11/6/2010 at 07:53

Whether it’s taking advantage of a good exchange rate to stock up on Fendi, Louis Vuitton and Hermès at Bangkok’s chic-er than chic, air-con palaces of consumerism, or hunting for their bargain-basement identical twins in the sweaty faker markets of Pat Pong or Khao San, shopping is an inescapable element to any trip to Thailand’s capital.
So, if you’re going to get the best for your baht you’re going to need know what you’re talking about.
First thing to remember is that if you’re dealing with a vendor who is open to a bit of bartering (and let’s be honest, you’ll be hard pressed to find one who isn’t) a nifty show of willing with the lingo works wonders in loosening up the price range.

Open Negotiations
First you want to start by asking the price. Make sure you’re ready to start the haggle.
How much: เท่าไหร่ tâo rài
Price: ราคา raa-kaa
How many กี่ gèe
This one อัน นี้ an née
So string some of these together to enquire after the price:
อันนี้ ราคา เท่าไหร่ an née raa-kaa tâo rài What’s the price of this one?
Or more simply
อันนี้ เท่าไหร่ an née tâo rài: How much is this one?
อัน นี้ กี่ บาท an née gèe bàat: How many baht for this one?

Getting into the haggle
Now you need to show some mock shock at the price – even though it’s already a tenth of what you’d pay at home.
Expensive: แพง paeng
A little too... ...ไป หน่อย bpai nòi
Reduce: ลด lót
Give: ให้ hâi
Special: พิเศษ pí-sàyt
Can you: ได้ ไหม dâi măi
Combine a few of these with some of the ones we already know to start the bidding war. These have all worked for me at some stage:
แพง ไป หน่อย paeng bpai nòi: (That’s) a little too expensive
ลด หน่อย ได้ ไหม lót nòi dâi măi: Can you reduce it a little?
ทำไม มัน แพง จัง tam-mai man paeng jang: Why is it so expensive?
ให้ ราคา พิเศษ ได้ ไหม hâi raa-kaa pí-sàyt dâi măi: Can you give (me) a special price?

The come-back
And so you can prepare for a repost. Here is what you’ll be met with.
Cheap: ถูก took
Cannot: ไม่ได้ mâi dâi
Already: แล้ว láew
Again: อีก èek
Pay: จ่าย jàai
Again, combining this with what we already know:
ลด แล้ว lót láew: (It’s) already discounted
ราคา พิเศษ แล้ว raa-kaa pí-sàyt láew: (It’s) already a special price
ลด อีก ไม่ได้ lót èek mâi dâi: (I) can’t reduce it any further/again
คุณ จะ จ่าย เท่าไหร่ khun jà jàai tâo rài: How much will you pay?
And it’s when you hear this last one that you can start beating around the baht until you both reach a price you’re happy with.

To seal the deal once a price has been reach that you’re happy with, either of you can say ตก ลง dtòk long: OK/agreed/deal, then hand over your cash.
Keep it light, never let your smile leave your face or your twinkle leave your eye and you’ll both end up as friends having done a good bit business.
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#1 AjarnPasa has been a member since 26/5/2010. Location: Thailand. Posts: 27
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