Travel

Learning the art of the deal

Good humor is part of the art of fair bargaining, like this merchant’s attitude in Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar.
Good humor is part of the art of fair bargaining, like this merchant’s attitude in Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar. david lyon for the boston globe

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I like a good deal as much as the next person and I’ve tested my bargaining skills against some of the best hagglers in the world: the merchants in the souk of Marrakech, the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, and the street markets of Hong Kong. Truth be told, though, I often savor the experience long after I’ve grown tired of the embroidered blouse or Prada purse knockoff. Striking a deal, it turns out, is a great way to meet local people on their own turf and engage in a bit of good-natured give and take. These savvy sparring opponents have taught me a thing or two over the years. Here are a few tips.

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