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To Haggle or Not to Haggle That is the Question

Person haggling with a shop owner
Andrew Hetherington/Getty Images

People in America aren’t really known for their ability to “haggle” these days. I mean really, when was the last time you tried to get a better price on a box of Frosted Mini Wheat’s at Hy-Vee?

But according to a new study from Consumer Reports, whenever you do get the opportunity to bargain, you should take it.

The study showed that that 48% of people in the U.S. have tried to bargain for a better deal in the past three years. What’s crazy, more than nine out of ten have succeeded at least once.

If you’re thinking of giving it a shot, the highest success rate came in appliances, where 94% of people who tried got a better deal. On average they saved around $200.00.

Another 94% of people tried to haggle with their favorite jeweler to get a better price and succeeded, saving an average of $150.00 on bling.

Furniture is another item that’s worth going to the bargaining table over. 91% of people that tried to get a better price on furniture had luck.

If you think you’re paying too much for your cell phone plan and your bank or credit card fees, better test your bargaining skills, about three-quarters of people succeeded in that department.

If you’re thinking about giving haggling a shot, here are a few tips:

  • Convince the person that a discount now will leads to more business down the road.


  • Don’t be intimidated by a person’s title.


  • Be prepared to walk away.


  • Pick a fair price. Do some research on the item or service and have some information before trying to strike a deal.


  • See if you can make a better deal by paying cash.  


Now I wonder if a little haggling would work on the price of a gallon of gas? Hmm?

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