Tips to Negotiate with Thai hookers
I figured that title would get your attention. I’ve seen guys get into a debate over this issue for many years now. Some guys have had the opinion that it’s in bad taste, and particularly cheap, to nickel and dime a girl who relies on the small amount of money to feed her children. Others had the view that it’s a matter of principle, and letting a girl charge you more than she gets from anyone else is just wrong. I think I’ve been in the middle on this issue for a while, but I’m starting to lean more towards not having a problem with negotiating.
Again, anytime someone talks about getting a bar girl down on her price, she’ll have defenders come out of the wood work, calling out anyone who would dare try. If the girl tells you 1,000 baht, and you start busting her chops to get her down to 800 baht, I think those guys have a point. 1,000 baht was the standard price for s/t in many places for a very long time. So if a girl says, “one thousand,” she’s hardly trying to rip you off. Trying to get her to drop her price by six American dollars does seem a little ridiculous to me, given that her price was more than fair to begin with. And it’s just not worth the $6! You ruin the mood and make her think you’re a cheap F, all for the price of a McDonalds value meal? You’re likely to lose in the long run of that transaction, because the girl is hardly going to be impressed with your thriftiness.
But that was then, and this is now. And now, very few girls in Bangkok or Pattaya say, “one thousand.” Prices have doubled, and the girls are a lot more willing to throw crazy prices at you. Go out enough, and you’ll hear three to five thousand baht sometimes! The days of “up to you pricing” are long gone. IF you want to be the guy who says, “Yes” to whatever the girls says, prepare to be taken advantage of. That is why I think it’s becoming somewhat necessary to have a negotiator’s attitude from the on-set of the transaction. And sometimes, just by merely giving her the impression that you’re willing to negotiate, the girl’s first price will be the right price. I don’t think a guy should have to pay more than everyone else does, simply because he comes off as being nicer than most guys. But that is the way it works out a lot of the time. By all means, continue to be nice! But when it comes down to talking turkey, do understand that it’s OK for the two of you to have a discussion that leads to a price both of you are comfortable with.
I’ll go into detail about how to negotiate in a bit, but first I want to make it clear that I don’t think haggling just for the sake of saving a few bucks is a worthwhile practice. IF the girl gives you a price that is in the range of realistic, you’re better off just accepting it. And there’s nothing cute about trying to get her down 100 baht, that’s just silly. The negotiating is necessary to get a dancer from 3,000 down to 2,000, or a freelancer from 2,500 down to 1,500. A lot of the time the girls fully expect there to be a negotiation, so they come out swinging with a high price because they figure they’ll get a 1,000 baht less than that anyway. And let’s throw out the part of the debate that went a little something like, “these poor girls are feeding their children.” Going from 3,000 baht down to 2,000 baht is not going to mean the difference of whether or not their children have food. You’re either going to pay her the average Thai’s salary for 7 days or for 10 days. So, spare me the “she desperately needs her full amount” BS. I’ve grown really tired of that argument.
As we’ve been discussing a lot lately, most of the bar girls have at least one guy on the hook from another country. The sponsors kick over 20,000-50,000 baht per month just so a girl can pretend to be their girlfriends when they’re on the phone. They still continue to work every night, where they can get 2,000-3,000 baht for each customer they see (many see 1 or more per day), and make another 15,000+ baht per month for lady drinks/salary. Hell, given the costs of things for native Thai’s and comparing them to a pretty bar girl’s income, lots of bar girls are actually in a better financial position than some of the expats and tourists they see. So you are not accomplishing anything by getting taken advantage of.
Tips to negotiate:
1) Agree on a price as early as you can. Getting past that should allow both of you to be a bit more comfortable. It also removes any chance of their being a price dispute after its too late.
2) Don’t be afraid to tell the girl the price. If you know the right price is 2,000, confidently tell her you’ll be paying 2,000 baht. If it’s the right price, the girl say it’s OK and you’ll move on to more fun things to talk about. You might be thinking, “but this ruins the chance of her giving me a discount.” Fat chance on that these days’ much better chance she was going to quote you above the right price, than under it.
3) Know that you can do better. There’s always a hotter and more willing girl in Thailand. So don’t go into the negotiation thinking that you cannot let this one go. IF she wants to be crazy about the price, let her go. Be nice about it, joke with her about how those prices are giving you heart trouble. And in the end, if she doesn’t want to work for realistic prices, go get another one who will.
4) Don’t let her bring up any of her past conquests. I wish they knew better than to do this, but a lot of them don’t. Don’t be surprised when you hear something like, “yesterday man give me 5,000 baht.” That is as meaningless to you, as the fact that most women F for free is to the bar girl. IF a girl tells me that, I may not even be interested in her anymore. But if I am, I’ll play around with her and say something like, “5,000!!!! Wow ,can you call him up and see if he’ll give me 5,000 for boom boom?” Then while she’s laughing, I confidently tell her, “Yesterday was yesterday, and today is today. Today is 2,000.” 99% she says it’s OK, and she’ll respect you more after that exchange.
5) Understand what she may be thinking. The time of the night or the day of the week will impact the girl’s decisions and prices as you might expect them to. Early in the night, the girl knows she has a lot of time to meet other potential customers. But early in the night, she also realizes that if she does a short time with you, she’ll be back in the bar with plenty of time to find another customer. I’ve told a girl before, I’ll have you back in here with more than enough time to find another customer; and it absolutely had an impact in her decision to give me a good price. On slow weekdays or very late in the night, girls may feel more pressure to do what’s necessary to get a customer. But, be aware that the girls know they can always hit the discos when their GoGo or bar closes; so they’re never desperate for a customer.
6) Let the girl chase you at least a little. I let the girl bring up the barfine, and when she does, I usually give a sort of “eh, maybe…” By doing that, sometimes it’s not just about the money to the girl. The money is always going to be a part of it, but it’s human nature to want people to like you. Look, “hard to get” is a timeless strategy, and it works for many reasons. For practical reasons, this will lead to very realistic prices, sometimes even a discount.