I. Attend Your Ship's Destination Shopping Talk
Many cruise lines and ships have a shopping expert onboard that will lead a talk prior to the arrival in a port of call. At these talks you can learn valuable information about where you can shop and how to save money in port. Also at the shopping talk or shopping desk you can find out where to get cheap items, get coupons, and if any shops in the port of call will be holding raffles for cruise ship passengers.
II. Research Shops In Advance
Spend a little time reading about shopping in the ports of call you are cruising to in advance. You may learn valuable information and find online coupons for some stores. If you find some reviews of the stores online, you may learn to avoid some stores because of poor service, low quality products, or pushy salespeople.
III. Watch Out For Pushy Salespeople
Some stores will have salespeople that will bug you to purchase something. A few of these people will pester you from the minute you step in the door to the second you step out of the door. Watch out for these people! If you feel bothered or annoyed because of a salesperson you should leave the store and tell the person you do not wish to buy the product.
IV. Use Coupons
Occasionally, you will get coupons for some shops in ports of call. These discount coupons could come from your cruise ship, a local visitor center, a travel guide, or inside the store's physical location. Consider using the coupon if you think the deal you are getting is a good one.
V. Bargaining - Some Places Do This, But Other's Do Not
You have probably heard that in foreign markets you can try to bargain with the shop to get a better price. Make sure you research what ports of call typically have bargaining and which ones don't. Doing this research will help you know if bargaining is acceptable in the ports of call you are cruising to.
If you are going to a place that does have bargaining make sure you bargain with your lowest price first. Setting the lowest price first might help by increasing your chances of meeting in the middle with what the shop wants. However, if you don't like the price or cannot bargain well walk away and forget about the item. In some shops if the bargain process isn't going well and a tourist starts to walk away the shop will give in to what the tourist wants to pay. Be careful not to pay more than what the item is worth.
We wish you the very best of luck in your port of call shopping and a great cruise vacation!