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Price range for carpets and other items in Istanbul?


Feb 20th, 2009, 04:13 AM
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Price range for carpets and other items in Istanbul?

Less than three weeks till my first trip to Istanbul. I was just reading the thread about bargaining in Turkey and am wondering what kinds of prices carpets start at. Obviously a large well made rug will be thousands, but how much might you have to spend to get a small area rug or runner or something like that?

Also, I know you have to bargain on things like rugs and probably even jewelery and and leather goods. But what about things that are in the $10-$30 range. Things like small ceramic items, costume jewelery, etc. Do you even haggle over things like that? Are there any prices posted on things ( or signs) or do you have to ask about everything? Thanks
isabel is online now  
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Feb 20th, 2009, 05:38 AM
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You can bargain for anything, even things that have price stickers posted on them. If prices are "fixed," the shopkeeper will let you know. It is up to you whether or not you would want to spend the time haggling over an item priced at a couple of dollars. You might ask for two of the same item for the original price, for example. In the bazaars, haggling will be expected.

Carpet prices are all over the map, so to speak. You can find small ones for less than 100$US, and even small ones of great quality or rareness can be priced up into the thousands. Know before you go is a good thought--price some rugs in your home city if possible, if you are planning a major purchase. You do not have to spend in the thousands of US dollars for a very nice large rug. (I bought nice Turkish kilims in NYC for less than that!!) Make sure you take measurements with you if you plan to buy for a specific space in your home.

Frankly, while my friends bought rugs, I found it very difficult and confusing to shop for these in Istanbul...I did not end up buying any rugs, but did come home loaded with other "treasures' from my last trip in 2005.
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Feb 20th, 2009, 03:31 PM
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I bought two runners in Istanbul from the state store and it is marked with the price with no haggling. Stress free. I was happy with them. You have to haul them out yourself and look at them, no tea, and then you take them up to the counter to purchase. It was pleasant.
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Feb 20th, 2009, 04:04 PM
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Buyer beware! On a recent trip to Kusadasi, the old bait and switch was used on me. The salesmen kept me separated from my mom and sister, which I thought was odd, but I found two rugs that I liked. We debated on a price and settled on $3,000 U.S. for what I thought were two silk on silk large area rugs (I don't remember the sizes). When one guy whisked me away to the counter to pay, the other saleman went in the back to wrap up my rugs. I was so excited to actually make a large purchase on my own without my husband to help out.

A few days later, when I looked at the rugs on the cruise ship, they were wool on cotton -- the same colors and patterns but different materials. All in all, about $800 worth of rugs. My heart sank. The excursion manager on the ship was so kind and understanding. She helped me out tremendously and returned the rugs on their next cruise. The credit card charge was reversed about two months later. I don't think all rugs shops would be like this, but please be careful. The experience did not sour my desire to go back to Turkey, but it did teach me a valuable lesson .

Also, watch the change due back to you at shops. At a typical tourist shop, I picked up a few pottery pieces, nothing expensive. The shopkeeper and I argued over a price and agreed upon 30 euros for the lot. I handed him a fifty and he gave me back the change for his original price of $45. Luckily, I can count change, even in euros...

Enjoy your time in Istanbul; I hear it is wonderful and look forward to visiting there one day.

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Feb 21st, 2009, 03:42 AM
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This is from a posting I made some few years ago and still a valid comment and you may make use of which I copied pasted and corrected few sentences:

Before coming Turkey best to masure spaces you may wish to cover with an original Turkish Double Knotted rug and even check out prices at a local dealer. Why not. When they sell a carpet they should supply with a certificate and if its home delivery they use Fedex or Ups so customers can ask when they want the carpet to arrive home, it should be insured ofcourse and after sales they should ask customer to sign both the label at the back and also on the rug itself with a permanent marker. customer should also take a digital photo or ask shop to do it and send by e-mail. I dont understand why people should not send the item purchased ?

Machine made carpets may look perfect but handmade carpets does too. It depens on the loom, weaver, material, density etc. For example there is no carpet ( almost ) to beat a Hereke fine silk carpet in perfection and quality. There are so may type of Turkish Carpets & rugs and kilims. What does a Turkish Carpet so special ? Tribal designs, natural dyes when applicable, double knot technique found by Turkish and known as Gordes knot, durability and ofcourse art of weaving including the emotions put in by the weaver. Negotiation part is a different issue ofcourse. Unfortunately there might be salespersons who are not honost shame on them but there are experts who are in the business since years and they put passion and love into their business and take pride on what they do. Prices may vary depending on the carpet and the quality.

New comment: Ask the origin of the carpet and get a certificate. Take pictures if home delivery. Sign back of the carpet. GET AN OFFICIAL INVOICE not just a sales slip. There are now Turkish motives on Chineese carpets too. Make sure origin of the carpet is written so its material on sertificate and get the shop put their official stamp on the certificate which could save your hard earned dollars secured now and than.

3000 US can not buy a silk carpet, unless it is Kayseri Silk and small, if Hereke size can not be more then 1,5 sqm and you are lucky if 2 sqm. A carpet depending on the quality, age and number of knots and size matters in this case ofcourse; would start anything from 200 USD and goes up to 100.000 USD. huge price range.

Happy Shopping,

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Feb 21st, 2009, 08:44 AM
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Thanks for all the info. I'm really not in the market for a large expensive carpet, I was thinking more of just a small scatter rug. I don't have the money (or the place) for a big rug but they are such a part of Turkey that I though if I could afford a small one I'd find someplace to put it.

southeastern - do you remember exactly where the store was that you got yours in?

ekscrunchy - I'm curious what other "treasures" you found in Istanbul.
isabel is online now  
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Feb 23rd, 2009, 11:01 AM
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Murat -

Thank you for your suggestions. I will definitely follow your advice when I go back to Turkey.

Best to you,

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Feb 23rd, 2009, 11:26 AM
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We bought two gorgeous rugs in the Grand Bazaar. I think the store was called CARPET INN. I'll see if I can find their card. The quality, service, and prices were excellent. Now if only I'd measured correctly!!! (SIGH)
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Feb 23rd, 2009, 01:11 PM
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A good shopping option if you want fixed prices is the state run shops. I bought a lovely men's ring for under AUD$30. There is a few in Istanbul - there's one near the Topkapi Palace. I can't remember the location or the name - I think the initials are DOHM or something like that. Maybe Murat can provide more details.
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