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No Vacation Required Podcast

For fulfillment fanatics interested in traveling deliriously, living deliberately, and working virtually.

How to Barter Like a Guilty Tourist

NVR Guys

We have vacated our dream rental apartment in Barcelona. As I write this, we're sitting at the airport having a pre-flight, early morning cup of coffee. Yes, we're back in the game with airlines and their nefarious ways. This time, with a real heavy-hitter, Vueling. You've probably heard of Vueling. It's the airline that hasn't met a fee it doesn't like to impose. Just don't call to inquire about those fees because they'll charge you to speak with someone. Take that, despite the fact that Vueling claims to be "always thinking about you." How sweet.

So.. this morning was a jumbled mess. We couldn't pay for our baggage fees online so had to do it at the airport. As a penalty, we incurred an even higher fee. To make matters even worse, after checking in, we were sent to another line to pay the fees.  All of this is done – as they profess – to make customers' experiences easier. Yeah, right.

There's no negotiating with the airlines and their rules and fees. I wish that wasn't the case. We're good at that kind of negotiating. I wish, too, that that skill translated to being expert street barterers.

On the road – when we buy souvenirs (rarely) – we're now trying to be more mindful of purchasing locally made items. Often times, that means engaging in the requisite back and forth on price.

Our pre-hagling strategy is always to: 1) get the price from the vendor and then 2) say we have less money on us.

Vendor says: "20 Euros."

One of us says: "We have 15 Euros on us."

What actually happens is significantly different.

Vendor says: "20 Euros."

One of us says: "Oh, good! I have 25 Euros."

Every time. How's that for some kind of guilt creeping in?

We're gonna practice in a few minutes on the plane. We have to burn the preferred strategy into our brains because we're heading to Morocco – a dickerer's paradise. Ayayay.

As we take off for a new country, we'll leave you with three pictures from Barcelona (it was a Gaudi photo-a-thon) along with photos from Lisbon and Malaga. All places where we bartered poorly!

Wish us better luck in Morocco. At this point, it's not looking so good.

Barcelona, Spain
Barcelona, Spain
Barcelona, Spain
Lisbon, Portugal
Malaga, Spain