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  1. #1
    Mehrgan's Avatar
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    Question How to ask for a discount...

    Hi everybody,

    What are the informal (used in every day English) phrases we can use to ask the shop assistant for a discount? (especially in BrE)

  2. #2
    Mehrgan's Avatar
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    Question Re: How to ask for a discount...

    Or, how a shop assistant can talk about this idea if he wants to convince the customer that they can't do so? Thanks...

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    Re: How to ask for a discount...

    I can't speak for UK folks, but in the US there are a limited amount of shops where a customer might negotiate a discount. At any brand-name retail store (such as Wal-Mart or Target) the prices are determined by a corporate office and employees have no authority to offer discounts. If, however, you are shopping at a privately owned shop that sells high-end appliances or furniture or jewelry, or at an automobile dealership, you might ask the salesperson "Is that your best price?" or "How much would [this item] cost if I paid you cash right now?". Or you could be coy and hover over a paricular item and when the salesperson asks "May I help you?" you could tell him/her "I really like this [item] but it's a bit out of my price range." Sometimes the salesperson will then begin to negotiate with you and offer a lower price.

    If the shop assistant has no authority over the prices and has to tell a customer such, he or she would simply say something like "I'm sorry, but the prices are as marked. I can't offer any discounts."

  4. #4
    Mehrgan's Avatar
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    Re: How to ask for a discount...

    Quote Originally Posted by Ouisch View Post
    I can't speak for UK folks, but in the US there are a limited amount of shops where a customer might negotiate a discount. At any brand-name retail store (such as Wal-Mart or Target) the prices are determined by a corporate office and employees have no authority to offer discounts. If, however, you are shopping at a privately owned shop that sells high-end appliances or furniture or jewelry, or at an automobile dealership, you might ask the salesperson "Is that your best price?" or "How much would [this item] cost if I paid you cash right now?". Or you could be coy and hover over a paricular item and when the salesperson asks "May I help you?" you could tell him/her "I really like this [item] but it's a bit out of my price range." Sometimes the salesperson will then begin to negotiate with you and offer a lower price.

    If the shop assistant has no authority over the prices and has to tell a customer such, he or she would simply say something like "I'm sorry, but the prices are as marked. I can't offer any discounts."

    So many thanks dear Ouisch for the perfect answer. All the best...

  5. #5
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: How to ask for a discount...

    It's pretty much the same in the UK. You can also ask things like 'What price could you offer me?' as well, but there are not that many shops where we barter- the ones Ouisch names and antiques, second-hand shops, possibly markets, etc. You'll see a lot of things on special offer or promotion, but not much bartering.

  6. #6
    Mehrgan's Avatar
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    Re: How to ask for a discount...

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    It's pretty much the same in the UK. You can also ask things like 'What price could you offer me?' as well, but there are not that many shops where we barter- the ones Ouisch names and antiques, second-hand shops, possibly markets, etc. You'll see a lot of things on special offer or promotion, but not much bartering.


    Thanks dear Tdol,

    It really helped. You might now that haggling over the price is a joyful activity in the Middle East bazaars! Ta!

  7. #7
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    Re: How to ask for a discount...

    I agree that there isn't much need for this in the UK, for the reasons explained before, but we do have some phrases for it:

    What price can you offer me?
    Are you open to offers?
    Any chance you could knock something off this?
    Can you do me a deal on this?
    Would you be able to reduce the price at all?
    Can we come to an arrangement about the price?!

    The main thing that we negotiate on the price of would be a car, especially if you offer to pay in cash instead of using a bank loan or asking for credit.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 21-May-2010 at 13:56.

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