You may be looking for holiday package deals to see the sights, taste the dishes, and experience the culture of a foreign land. Well, that’s what most tourists would do. But have you ever considered going on a shopping spree out there? No? Then, you should. Buying things in another land should be part of the experience so you can witness the difference of the way of how business is transacted in their country and yours.
For instance, you may automatically hand the right price of an item when you buy something in your country. However, in Egypt, Hong Kong, China, and other places, you would find out that you need to haggle for a lower rate. Not that the prices of the products are much higher there than in your country, but you will quickly find out that you can get the item at a much lower price if you haggle. That’s because in price tag displayed on an item is around 3 to 10 times the factory price! That gives you a large playing field in bargaining while, at the same time, not robbing the merchant off his efforts.
In more remote areas, you might even realize that buying items actually requires a barter system. That means, goods, not money, is involved in the transaction. For instance, if you want to “buy” an intricately handmade pot made by a villager in a community secluded in the jungle, you may give him a few live chickens in exchange of the pot. Since the village is mostly cut off from society, he may not have an understanding of the concept of money anyway.
Another advantage of shopping abroad is that you can get similar or even the same items that are sold in your country at a much cheaper price in another country. For example, let’s say you are a lover of rum. Rum is relatively expensive in the wine shops of your country. But if you travel to the Philippines, you will be pleasantly surprised to find out that excellent rum is dirt cheap. In fact, you can buy an entire box filled with bottles of fine rum with less than USD 20!
If you are a stickler for anything authentic, then shopping abroad is your ticket to satisfying that “standard” of products. After all, you can’t find any product more authentic than the one made in its country of origin. Thus, if you always wanted to adorn your living room with a real super-detailed, handmade Persian carpet, then Iran (formerly named Persia) is the best place to go. In Iran, you can find countless designs of such carpets—knock yourself out. Also, since there’s no middleman involved, you can buy such carpets at a much lower price.
Lastly, shopping abroad lets you experience the culture of a nation. For instance, if you visit Netherlands and visit a cheese market on a weekend, you might find more than simply shopping for a wheel of Gouda cheese. You can actually witness—or even partake—the lively interaction between cheese makers and locals or even the funny but dangerous sport of cheese rolling.
Do you want to make the most of your cheap holiday deals? Then set aside some money so you can shop abroad.