Bargaining Hacks At Sarojini Nagar And Janpath

Arguably two of the best places to shop at all across India, Delhi’s surplus market of Sarojini Nagar and Janpath often fail to skip a shopaholic’s Delhi itinerary. Of lately, there have been several bloggers and influencers making vlogs and haul videos about knick-knacks bought at these markets. Easily beating even the latest of Zara’s collection, are clothes found in the bundled heaps at this markets as well accessories (bags, junk jewellery, footwear) that don’t cease to inspire even the biggest of designers.

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While Janpath is a path dotted by stores retailing mostly quality goods, catching the fancy of international tourists, Sarojini Nagar Market is what is outright bargain business. It is tough to bargain with the store owners of Janpath but you still have hope as you explore a little around and you will find a colourful Gujarati Market, an eccentric Tibetan Market and a lane that has everything to satiate your hunger and spoil you further with clothing choices.

If you are an impulsive shopper-driven by the thrill of a good bargain, here’s a list of bargaining hacks that you may bear in mind on your visit to either of these places!

Janpath

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Lucknowi kurtas, jhumkis, intricately embroidered purses, mock copies of Westside kurtas, pashmina shawls among many more greed provoking items are what you are most likely to spot within a few minutes of getting to Janpath. But don’t get complacent yet, because there is much more to this path.

Cutting the entire patch in the middle is a lane that is certain to catch your attention with its chaos of colours is a lane called the Gujarat Market. Flanked by stalls with cheerful owners, this lane is where you will find all things Gujarati. From bandhani dupattas, mirror work dress materials, sarees, to beautiful oxidized silver jewellery. If you are a fan of statement pieces, you must check out this lane given that you will find some fantastic vintage pieces here.

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Passing the shops on your left you will come across an edifice where you must stop for the famous De Paul’s cold coffee and momos. If you prefer something more authentic, just hover around for a while till you spot a Kachori wala with a big container in his hand; trust me guys this is one of the best you will ever have!

Walking outside the barricade you will find another lane with a gamut of clothes’ stalls. Now, at Janpath, these stalls and the Gujarat Market ones are the only places where you can practically put your bargaining skills to use. The shop owners don’t entertain any sort of bargaining advance.

Some bargaining hacks that can actually be practiced at Janpath:

  • With the vendors on the pavement

Since most of them are selling the same things, the scene is pretty competitive. You definitely have a scope to bargain here. Going ahead, showing consideration for another vendor is the best way to earn a thrift here.

  • In the Gujarat Market

While trying your luck at the Gujarat Market, remember that you get here is art and mostly handcrafted. The vendors are skilled artisans and know the worth of their work so it is advisable that you be sensitive to that and offer your deal.

  • At the barricaded patch

These are mostly clothes that you are likely to get even in Sarojini, at a lesser price. The vendors here are a little rigid about bargaining, with an already steep price. However, you can bargain if you claim a fair price.

  • Shops at Janpath

Janpath shops mostly boast of an appeal that is generally fancied by the international tourists. Pashmina shawls, ittars (perfumes) and Lucknowi merchandise are what you will find in these shops with “Fixed Rate” signboard all over them. You can definitely try your luck with bargaining, for there is a certain chance of getting lucky. Also look at for the flat priced clothes that these shops mostly hang on stands outside the shops.

How to reach Janpath?

1. Cab

2. Rented car

3. Metro stations - Patel Chowk and Janpath

Sarojini Nagar

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The first time I heard about Sarojini Nagar or SN as it is referred to was in the context that one can actually build an entire look from here, head to toe in a mere 500 bucks. It has had me intrigued ever since and I couldn’t be glad to have visited a couple of times enough to tell you the tricks of the trade.

Being the thrifter that I am, Sarojini Nagar presents to me a wide array of many things - the adrenaline rush that bargainings brings with it, branded surplus and export rejected clothes that are just as good as what you get in the mall, an abundance of choices, use and throw accessories and labyrinths that make a lively, soulful spectacle of human existence! If you think you are anything like me, here’s how to make the most of  Sarojini Nagar Market visit:

  • The right time to visit Sarojini Nagar Market

Anytime is a good time to treat yourself to some retail indulgence at SN, however, if you do it a particular time your happiness will know no bounds. If I may, I will call it the “Golden Hour of shopping at Sarojini” known as the “Bohni Time” by vendors. This is that hour between 10 AM to 11 AM when the market hasn’t really started operating yet. Bohni or Bhavani is a form of Goddess which is actually the first earning of the day. This is what marks the day’s business for them and they’re usually very keen on getting it started with whatever sum is offered.

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If you seek the best day to visit Sarojini Nagar Market, you must know that Monday’s are the cheapest! However, just look out for stains and undone the stitching.

  • Make a deduction of 60 to 80 per cent of your offer

You might be laughed off or even provoked to take offence, but that’s just a part of the process. Simply overlooking an attempt to provoke whilst moving on to the next vendor is one thing that really tests the vendor so much to agree to see at your price.

  • Don’t waste time in a recce

It is usual for us women to look around till we find what really interests us. But in a place like Sarojini, it is best to avoid that. Pick what you like the minute you see it.

  • Mention it was cheaper somewhere else

If you really like something, you can be a little sly about a white lie saying it was a cheaper price at another stall. Quote a price almost 80 per cent lesser of what this vendor is quoting; chances of you getting it are high!

  • Be confident

Be confident with your quote to make sure you are making an impression of a seasoned shopper. Trying to pick up some locally used expressions for bargaining can be a great idea too.

  • Don’t be too attached to an item

The best way to not feel bad about not winning a bargain is by detaching from your desired item. Just quote your price, if you and the vendor agree to find a middle ground, great, if not, don’t push it!

With this list of bargaining hacks, rest assured you will return not only with some great bargains but also a cherishing experience from SN or Janpath.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A deep-dyed Piscean, Seema is a dreamer. This extends to the fact that she is seldom in another world of her's or dreaming of the place she would rather be ...

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