Barter For Dummies

I could use a book like that, because when it comes to bartering, I definitely qualify as a dummy. But I get the sense that it could be a lot worse, so maybe I shouldn’t complain.

We took a taxi from our hotel to the gates at Petra. Before we left we asked how much the fare would be, and were told six Dinar each way. I suspect the rate given by the hotel was at the upper end of the official range. I was thinking that it might even have been the most that you could ask for with a straight face. Was I ever wrong on that one.

The taxi ride to the gates went without a hitch. I gave the driver six Dinar, plus a tip, and we were on our way. The return trip was a different story. We were tired and dusty after a long, but enjoyable, day in Petra, so we decided to take a taxi rather than wait for the free hotel shuttle.

Before we got into the taxi, I asked what the fare would be. He started to say ten, caught himself, and said twelve Dinar. I guess he figured we were tired enough to pay a premium. All I could do was raise my eyebrows and ask “seriously?” When that didn’t work, I explained that I had just paid six Dinar a few hours earlier. In the end, I held firm and we agreed on seven Dinar, including the tip. But I felt that perhaps I had been a bit too harsh. Until the driver started asking where we were going next, and offered to take us all the way to Aqaba (about an hour and a half drive) for only 40 Dinar. And that was his opening bid. I think he did quite well on the fare to the hotel.

I don’t have a picture of the barter session, but I do have one of me high on the hills around Petra, enjoying the view. It is a place you really should see. But be prepared to barter for your taxi ride.

Jordan 24 Apr 218

About If It Was Today

Eat, Drink, Travel, Write...
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2 Responses to Barter For Dummies

  1. What hotel did you stay at – that’s a rip off! Please write a review on Tripadvisor about the hotel so that other guests don’t get ripped off by people who are being greedy. It’s maximum 2JD each way including a tip. I’m sorry that you paid to much. It’s experiences like that that can really put a sour note on your holiday. If you write a review letting people know what to pay and not to listen to the hotel staff (who would have received half what you paid from the taxi driver) then everyone has a more enjoyable time and pays the correct amount. Also even though it’s too late for you when catching a taxi from the gate back to your hotel you should never talk to the taxi’s directly at the gate. Just keep walking past them and up the road and ask any driver (doesn’t have to be a taxi) to take you to your hotel for 2JD. Don’t get in the car if they won’t accept that. Hopefully you still enjoyed the rest of your time in Jordan.

  2. My hotel was out of town, about a 10 – 15 minute taxi ride, so I suspect that 6JD was not completely unreasonable. But I like your suggestion to go past the gate and catch a taxi on the street. I’m sure that would make a huge difference.
    I had a wonderful time in Jordan, and would highly recommend it to anyone. There are so many amazing things to see. And to be completely honest, I found my taxi “adventure” more amusing than annoying.

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