Istanbul Shopping Tips

The standarts and reliability of shopkeepers have greatly improved during the last decade as more profesionalism and branding have taken place. However bargaining is a major part of the Turkish culture so unless you shop at a supermarket, or you are buying food or tickets, it is possible to offer a lower price to the shopkeeper. You have nothing to lose. Also before bargaining it is a Turkish thing to shop around to check for the market price level. You will note that most of the shops in the same neighborhood offer about the same price give and take. This is mostly due to rents which have gone extremely high in the past five years. So dealmaking can be better done if you change neighborhood.

If you are shopping for gold jewellery and would like to compare prices, take the ferry to Kadikoy either from Eminonu or Karakoy and just a minute walk up the small hill starts Altiyol which is the jewellery neigborhood for Turkish people living on the Asian side of Istanbul. A torrent of people runs major streets of Kadikoy so you may find difficulty walking, feeling like the salmon going upstream, similar to Istiklal street but in narrow sidewalks. Jewellerries are located on both the left and right of the street and they may offer good deals, you might check them just to get an idea.

Carpets and leather are two major world reknowned Turkish goods. There are many leather and carpet shops around town but keep in mind, you need to bargain hard.

Turkish gift items can be found in the Grand Bazaar and in souvenir shops around Istanbul.

Also check Taksim Hotels, Sultanahmet Hotels, Restaurants, Istanbul Night Life, or back to Istanbul Travel Guide.