My friends here in Thailand will tell you that perhaps I have been a bit irrational when it comes to approaches the street vendors here. After a couple incidents where I felt a little ripped off as the “single, foreign travel girl”, I am a little wary off approaching transactions where the cost is not clearly marked and irrefutable.
There is also such a culture of bargaining here, that the price a seller might tell you on a sarong or t-shirt is completely and totally negotiable, but I really don’t know if I have the presence to negotiate. I think the attitude to walk away has to be ever present.
In any case, I think food is a bit easier on the price because it is so cheap. Fruit is about 20 – 30 baht and hot food is probably 30 – 40 baht (30 baht equals 1 American dollar). It’s a lot easier to point and ask for what you want and food, more than any type of good, has to be sold. So I think they’re apt to quote a fairer price to anyone, farang or not.
Many of the vendors that sell food have their little kitchens attached to platforms on their motorbikes. The fruit-man comes around the the gym area and honks his horn to alert the camp to his arrival. He has a glass box filled with ice and fruit. You point at what you’d like they finish the chopping process and stick it in a bag for you (everything comes in bags here, including soup).
Obviously, the process is much easier and less mysterious than I imagined. Therefore, I’ll provide a step-by-step instruction of just how simple it was.
Step 1: Find the fruit man
Step 2: Point to the fruit you’d like and watch as the fruit man packages it up
Step 3: Enjoy!