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Making a cheap holiday to tenerife even cheaper – a guide to the fine art of haggling

Making A Cheap Holiday To Tenerife Even Cheaper – A Guide To The Fine Art Of Haggling

Tenerife is famous for its markets, and of course there is nothing quite as satisfying as haggling yourself to a bargain. The trouble is that many Brits abroad are too afraid to try their hand at bartering, fearing that bargaining their way to cheaper prices will make them seem cheap or break the traditional British reserve. In this guide, I shall explain the cut and thrust of the wonderfully addictive game of market bargaining, but first a few tips on where to find the best markets in Tenerife…

Torviscas Market and Los Cristianos are perhaps the biggest markets in Tenerife, and a great opportunity to brush up on your haggling skills. It also boasts the biggest range of products to get your teeth stuck into (figuratively speaking) – clothing, fashion, books, electricals, jewellery and even property! Obviously, you don’t want to get too wrapped up in the haggling and end up buying the latter, but in terms of range of goods to buy, these two cannot be beaten.

On Friday mornings, the Golf Del Sur market is a good choice for those staying nearby. It’s quite new, but is already picking up in terms of popularity with a varied number of stalls offering an interesting mix of goods. The night market at Los Abrigos offers a unique atmosphere, and despite a smaller selection of stalls offers a nice range of beautiful jewelery. Finally the African market at Santa Cruz is a site to behold: made up of over 300 stalls of fresh produce, this is the perfect place to practice your bartering – just don’t take too long, because the tastiest fruit and vegetables tend to go very quickly!

So now you know the best places to try haggling in Tenerife, the question becomes how it is done. Here’s the best advice I’ve got to ensuring you bag the best deal…

1)Know the market

Whilst it can be tempting to throw yourself in at the deep end and start haggling over every item that catches your interest on the first day of your Tenerife holiday, it actually pays to spend a little time getting to know the general prices of the island. Spend a few hours making a wish list of items you’d like to pick up, and assessing how much they tend to go for – work out what is and isn’t a reasonable price before you start your first haggle.

2)Be polite and keep your sense of humor

Haggling at a market is supposed to be fun, and you won’t improve your chances by being surly and rude. Keep it slightly playful and you’ll be more likely to avoid offense and score the bargain you’re looking for.

3)Be ready to walk away

Walking away is actually a very important part of the haggling dance. If the bartering has reached an impasse and the merchant is refusing to drop the price any lower, don’t be afraid to walk away. If it looks like the merchant is going to lose the sale, he may well follow you with ‘one last offer’.

4)Convert the price into your own currency

This sounds obvious but you need a good handle on the currency before you begin. Tenerife uses the Euro, so get your head around a rough conversion rate before you begin – loosely, £1 is equivalent to 1.5 Euros, so bear this in mind – you don’t want to haggle for ages only to eventually work out you were arguing over pennies!

5)Hesitation is your friend

Your best friend in the exciting world of haggling isn’t actually your words, it’s the absence of them. Show some hesitation in responding to an offer, and your merchant may quickly produce a better offer for fear of failing to close a sale. Don’t overuse the tactic or it will be seen through quite easily, but hesitation is perfect because it implies you’re tempted, and will make the seller think he’s nearly there. This is best used when approaching a price you’re willing to pay.

6)Bargaining isn’t just about price

The price is the main thing naturally, but extra value doesn’t need to simply come from a few quid knocked off! Extras items and services can be used to barter – agree to pay the price suggested, if your seller agrees to throw in another item you’re interested. If the bargaining has become stale, this is a good way to reignite the discussion and bring you closer to a bargain to brag about!

7)Dress down

Appearance shouldn’t come into the haggling experience, but it really does! Put yourself in the sellers shoes: If someone comes to you saying they can’t afford to spend more than £8 on the vase, are you more or less likely to believe them if they’re wearing an Armani suit and Rolex wrist watch? Dress down, and don’t give the impression that you have the money to pay their top price if you want to secure the best bargain.

8)Point out imperfections before you begin

It’s a standard rule that you play down the item you’re interested in purchasing before a price is first named. If you mention the uneven paintwork on a vase before asking the price, the seller is just more likely to name a more reasonable cost in the first place, which makes bartering them down that little bit easier…

9)Set a maximum price you’re willing to pay

Before you start the process, think of what you’re actually willing to pay, and what you’d like to part with. By setting a maximum and ideal value, you can have clear boundaries to work in, and can accurately assess whether you’re likely to reach a price point you’re happy with. It will also ensure you don’t feel disgusted at how much you’ve paid later, thinking you got a bargain at the time.

10) A facial expression is worth a thousand words

I mentioned earlier the power of silence in producing a swift drop in price, but that only tells the aural side – visuals also play a huge part in the bartering process, and while keeping your poker face when a superbly low offer is handed your way is important, looking skeptical, horrified or even laughing at a bad offer can be just as powerful. Sometimes such a reaction can prompt a price drop without you even having to open your mouth (though obviously it helps with the laughter) so bear this in mind if an opportunity arises.

Haggling is a great way of making a cheap holiday to Tenerife even cheaper! The most important thing about all this is to have fun though. I wouldn’t recommend you try haggling too much on items you really want, because it will seriously limit your ability to ‘play the game’ effectively with that all important bargaining method: walking away and looking elsewhere.

Explore the black forest

Explore The Black Forest

Most people have heard of the Black Forest, but not everyone has had the privilege of visiting the area. It can be found in the south western corner of Germany, and it holds many delights for those who are lucky enough to pay it a visit.

One thing that many people realise when they do finally see it is that it doesn’t live up to its name. This is a good thing, since its name has connotations of dark and dreary places, and the forest itself is very far from being anything like that.

Instead you will find some stunning scenery and the constant need to have your camera ready and able to shoot some great pictures. Be sure to get a photo or two of some of the inhabitants of the Black Forest should you see them in their traditional dress. They don’t wear this all the time, but it is quite a stunning sight to see.

The dress worn by the women is dark brown, with a white blouse underneath and a hat that has to be seen to be believed. It has a number of red pom poms on the top. And if this all sounds a little familiar it is because the much loved dessert, Black Forest gateau, is based on this traditional dress. So the next time you tuck into a slice, think about how it came about!

What can you see in the Black Forest itself? Well, you could spend an entire holiday here because it is more than 120 miles long, with a width of more than 35 miles. Within this area there are several mountains, the highest of which is the Feldberg, which is just short of 5000 feet high.

If you want to take home a souvenir of your time in the Black Forest, one of the best things you could buy would be an authentic cuckoo clock. There are many craftsmen who have made their home and business in the Black Forest, and they have many different cuckoo clocks for sale.

As you might expect from a mountainous area, you will find many valleys here as well. The whole area should really be called the Green Forest because it looks so lush and healthy. You can explore the many villages and buildings that are found in clusters in the villages, and enjoy the feeling of being in another time.

Indeed this is one of the most stunning things about the Black Forest. Many of the towns and villages here are hundreds of years old, and they seem to have changed little in the intervening years.

One of the best ways of getting around the Black Forest is to go for car rental Stuttgart. You can hire a car for a week or more if you wish, making it easy to see as much of the famous forest as you possibly can.

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Rv loan mistakes that you must avoid

RV Loan Mistakes That You Must Avoid

Deciding which motorhome or RV to buy often is only part of the buying process at hand. Actually, more money can be lost on making the financing arrangements than almost anywhere else in the deal. If you have the money to pay cash for a motorhome, then financing isn’t even an issue, but with the rising cost of new and even used RVs, motorhome loans are a necessary part of the sale for many.

There are some mistakes that are commonly made that can cost you dearly if you don’t take steps to avoid them and here they are:

1. Don’t focus on the monthly payment figure alone to determine if you can afford a particular motorhome model. This is often done by car buyers too, but the monthly payment is only part of the whole loan picture. You need to take that monthly payment figure and multiply it by the number of months that the loan contract is in force. Once you have that figure, then compare the final cost of the loan contract with the cost of just buying the rig itself. Usually this will be an eye-opening exercise and can help you see if exhorbitant interest is being charged on this loan. If you find that you are paying almost as much in interest as you are for the motorhome itself, you may be better served to either look at something much less expensive, or make different financing arrangements.

2. Avoid any financing that is not a simple interest loan. Lenders have all kinds of tricks up their sleeve to get more money from lending to you and one of the ways that has been most detrimental to consumers is by writing a contract that doesn’t allow you to start paying down the principal amount of the loan in any meaningful way until the loan is in it’s final stages. It’s called frontloading the interest and what it means is that most, if not all, of the money that you pay for the first half or so of the loan only goes toward the interest, not the principal. So when you decide to sell, you will still owe them a huge chuck of money and they make a lot more profit with this kind of loan.

It’s best to avoid any loan that is not based on a simple interest process. In other words, the interest is a set part of the monthly payment from the very first payment all the way through to the end of the loan period. If a lender tells you that you can’t qualify for a loan like that, never take their word about that. Always shop around and get other loan quotes on your own. Most often you can come up with a better financing arrangement by doing that anyway.

Getting a motorhome loan doesn’t have to be costly or mysterious if you just watch what is going on and keep your eye on the bottom line.

Increasing revpar without sacrificing margins or brand value

Increasing RevPar without sacrificing margins or brand value

Hotels are being pummeled by the economy, and the hospitality industry is suffering in every corner of the globe – what else is new?

In the current climate, most hotel experts are expecting RevPar (revenue per available room) to drop by as much as 11%, perhaps even more. And with occupancy rates already at all-time lows, this isn’t good news for the hotel business. In such a climate, many hoteliers will compete on rate, but this only creates a downward spiral of price competitiveness, and more pain for the long-term growth and sustainability of hotels’ revenues once the economy bounces back.

So how can hotels compete in this weak economy, looking beyond discounts? Is it possible to flourish, even during such a travel slowdown?

The answer is yes. I have seen proper revenue management take a struggling hotel from barely surviving to thriving, even as the recession bites deeper. One Miami-based property was struggling to maintain a 45% occupancy rate. After overhauling its revenue management system, occupancy jumped to 90 to 94%, with an increase in revenues of 70%. Too good to be true? Absolutely not. A fundamental building block of revenue management, RevPar is one of the most important metrics of the hospitality industry and absolutely possible with the right system in place.

For hotels, RevPar is key determinant of profitability. It’s what keeps the doors open, yet many hotels and chains still handle room occupancy and pricing in an old-fashioned and haphazard manner – reactively and rarely scientifically.

Times like these require greater efficiencies in everything from improving customer relationships and boosting loyalty initiatives, to improving direct marketing programs and not cutting back on service. None of these, however, can be sustained without optimising cost centers and profits. And on that basis, effective revenue management becomes an operational imperative, not an option. It’s time for hoteliers to think beyond discounts and so I have created a list of tips on how hotels can increase their RevPar, without sacrificing margins or brand value:

Supercharge your internet sales
Only web-based internet sales can compensate for what has not been sold in advance to fill your hotel. In 2009, the meetings and corporate market is slowing even more so sales efforts should be focused on the internet. This is the channel that discount-hungry travelers are using more and more frequently when booking travel, so it is vital to manage your hotel’s web presence to gain greater visibility and better positioning… which of course, means more sales.

Open your sales office at night
Hotel staff cannot manage Online Travel Agencies (OTA) allotments 24/7. So if you’re not adapting in real-time and making updates as travelers are out there shopping (even internationally) when you’re asleep, you are missing out on valuable RevPar dollars. As supply and demand fluctuate non-stop, you need to automate your pricing at night to increase your hotel’s profitability.

Increase sales by changing your rates more often
Once the OTA allotments are filled, your hotel is closed for business, with no one to reopen the online booking allotment. But as more bookings arrive, hotel rates should successively increase. Many hotels, however, leave money on the table because there is no one to change prices in real-time. In this economic environment where every dollar can make the difference between boom or bust, changing rates only once or twice a day does not make sense, or cents, anymore.