Top Tips For Shopping in Food Markets Abroad

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Shopping at food markets is a great way to get to know the place where you’re staying. Food markets are usually full of local, seasonal fruits, and veggies, fresh meat and fish, and other locally produced goodies. You’ll get a chance to meet the local growers and artisans, and feel immersed in the vibrant market culture.

However, markets can be a bit of an assault on the senses and may make you feel overwhelmed or intimidated. Follow our top tips to navigate markets like a pro.

Do a Lap Before Buying Anything

Food markets are usually busy, loud and full of color, interesting smells and sights. This is part of the fun but it can be overwhelming. Take a walk around the market before feeling any pressure to start shopping. You can see what’s there and get used to the environment.

Make the Most of Free Samples

In most food markets abroad, people like to try before they buy. Keep an eye out for free samples and don’t be afraid to ask for tasters, especially if you’re seriously considering making a purchase.

Don’t Be Afraid to Haggle

Check with the locals first, but in many places, haggling at food markets is commonplace. This can be tricky if you don’t know the language but make good use of sign language and counting on your fingers!

Keep Hold of Your Purse

As with many crowded places, markets can sometimes be a hotspot for pick-pockets. Keep a tight grip on your belongings and consider keeping valuables in a fanny pack.

Try Something New

One of the most exciting things about shopping in food markets is you’re likely to encounter foods you’ve never seen before. Buy that funky looking fruit, unusual pastry or delicious-smelling street food—it’s all part of the adventure!