TOP TIPS TO SHOPPING AND BARTERING IN BALI
Every two metres you walk in Bali, you can buy something. Bali really is a shopper’s paradise.
There are several tiers of shopping options. At the high end are the designer shops like Polo, and there are a lot of international designers that base themselves in Bali too. There are also Malls and Shopping Centres just like you would find at home. Then, on the lower end, you have discount stores and the markets. Some have fixed prices and others want you to barter.
So, let the Bali shopping journey begin! Here is what you need to know.
Here are the best stores that you should visit for all your shopping needs:
Bintang Shop (located in Seminyak, Ubud & Dalung) is a great place to buy household items, fruits and vegetables and anything else you would buy in a store at home. Some items are cheap others are more expensive due to importing.
COCO Marts, Mini Marts, and Circle K shops are the best for general items. Some are open 24 hours and at some of these locations you can also safely exchange money.
The Krisna (four locations Kuta, Tuban and two in Denpasar) is THE place to buy traditional Balinese items and souvenirs cheaper than anywhere else.
The Matahari is great for the Myer experience of Bali. You can buy great shoes here ladies!
Designer shops are mostly located in Seminyak, but they can be found in most tourist hotspots. They have great quality clothes at similar prices to home, but some really unique designs that will get you lots of compliments back home.
The markets are where you will find sarongs, dresses, pants, shorts, shirts, hats, sunglasses, DVD’s and pretty much anything you could imagine! Some items are genuine Balinese items, or imports from China, others are not genuine and are sold on the black market like fake Billabong clothing, DVD’s and other designer brands.
Top Bartering Tips
1.Never take the first price you are offered as it is often double or even triple the real price.
2. Knowing a little bit of Bahasa (Indonesian) will often get you a better price. See the basics on our website to print and take with you.
3.Check out the set price shops where you can still buy most market items for a reasonable cost. This will also give you a general ideas of pricing in Bali.
4.When shopping in Bali if you are buying multiple items you should expect to get a better price.
5.Stick to your guns and walk away if you don’t get the price you think is fair. Or say you will come back later and give yourself time to think about it, in most cases you can always go back!
6.Remember that Rupiah sounds like a lot more money than it is. Haggling for a price of $50,000, and they want $60,000 is only a dollar difference and will not impact your bottom line much, but remember, this is a meal or more to them. You want to pay what is fair, absolutely, but try to be kind too.
Make sure you check out our top things to see, do and try in Bali, our guide to planning the perfect family trip and our tip tips for safe Bali travel in our Bree’s Family Passport section