If Price Is Too High Make 'Em An Offer - NBC Southern California

If Price Is Too High Make 'Em An Offer

Retailing experts say stores lower prices for the bold few shoppers who dare to ask

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    NEWSLETTERS

    If Price Is Too High Make 'Em An Offer
    Some retailers will lower their prices, but you have to ask.

    A pessimist would remind you there's less than two days remaining to shop for the Christmas holiday.

    Then again, maybe that's the optimistic point of view.

    Either way, those who've waited until the last minute, are not alone. And to make the experience even more annoying enjoyable, some retailing experts are suggesting that you haggle.

    That's right, in addition to wrestling that last box from the clutches of a wheelchair-bound grandmother, they expect you to find a salesperson and haggle for it.

    You know. Dicker. Quibble. Wrangle.

    Ok, it's admittedly more fun to say the words than to engage in the actions. So, for those wondering how exactly this might work (I certainly was), the Associated Press offers us a few recent examples, including this one: "While shopping for Blu-ray discs at a Los AngelesBest Buy, Luis Levy used his cell phone to check the price at nearby competitors. Each disc was $10 cheaper at Circuit City or Wal-Mart. Best Buy matched the lower prices."

    "You'd have to be a moron not to ask for a discount," says Stephen Hoch, a retailing expert at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Help is available at Web sites dedicated to the art of haggling, including howtohaggle.com. Besides offering how-to advice, the site also explains where in the world you're allowed to haggle, a list that includes large electronics stores, flea markets and hotels. When it comes to department stores, the site says department stores will only haggle on damaged goods and large items.

    And, if I may offer some advice of my own on that last point … While you might get a good deal haggling for a department store couch, I wouldn't expect on-time delivery, no matter what the salesman says. In my house we call this lesson "The Christmas We Spent on the Floor."