I'm interested in haggling. One thing I wonder about is where it's actually a local practice, and where it's been introduced because tourists expect to bargain for everything. --Evan 07:07, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)
Bargaining is or was the default mode everywhere -- fixed prices were regarded as a wild and dangerous innovation when first introduced. Tourists are mostly responsible for opportunistic price-gouging, like tuk-tuk drivers in Thailand asking for silly prices when they see a farang climb on board when they'd never get away with this if it was a local. Jpatokal 07:29, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)
Just agreeing with Jpatokal, bargaining is the 'norm' across the world, it is only a few Western countries that have adopted fixed prices. I'd like to point out that in countries worse of than your own, you will usually end up paying slightly higher than a local, however hard you haggle. This might seem unfair, but remember that you can earn considerably more than them: In Morocco the average wage is $2/day.
Embarrasing story: On the way out of Morocco, at Tangier, we were trying to get a taxi from the train station to the town centre. None of the taxi drivers were using the meter, and they were offering way over-the-odds for the ride (I think about 30 dh = £2). We decided to walk, as it was only a couple of miles... >_< Moral: You have to know when to stop haggling and say 'ok' - especially when it's over tiny things. (To recover a bit of my dignity: In other cases saying 'no' and finding an alternative solution, even if you're just bluffing, will usually make the price drop like a stone: The hotel we stayed in in Fez ended up being considerably cheaper than our guide book said it was after a bit of bluffing).