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The Least Awkward Ways to Ask for a Discount

The Least Awkward Ways to Ask for a Discount
Alison Storm

There are plenty of sophisticated money-saving methods. These are not those. Turns out saving money doesn't always require pulling out your Fiskars, memorizing coupon policies and working the system. Sometimes all it takes is asking. Here are five ways to do that in the least awkward way possible.

Last Week's Salediscount one day

I recently wanted to buy a light fixture from Restoration Hardware. It was on sale, but I thought I'd wait until the following week. When I returned to the website to buy it, though, it was back to regular price. Instead of just accepting my error I called the company's customer service number. I admitted my error and asked if there was any way I could still take advantage of the sales price. After speaking with her manager the woman on the other end agreed. I can't say she was overly friendly about it, but she did give me the discount and I ended up saving about $50 with a simple ask.

That's More Than I Want to Spend

As much as we all like to pretend we're well-to-do, we all have bills to pay. It's just a part of life. Even wealthy people have budgets. So rather than pretending you're perfectly fine with paying full price be transparent. "That's more than I wanted to pay, but I really like it," is another way of saying that it's not quite in your budget, but if the price were lower it just might be. With any luck the sales associate will come back with a deeper discount.

The Good Guy Discount

NPR did a report on "the good guy discount." It helped one man score deep discounts on everything from shoes to tires. It may sound cheesy, but creating a bond between you and the cashier may be enough to save you some serious cash. The story claims by simply saying, "I'm a good guy, you're a good guy, can I get the good guy discount?" you will find yourself paying less. The main source in the NPR story says this works for him one time out of five so you may need to hear "no" a few times before it actually works.

The Missing Coupondiscount cashier

My sister, not the most organized person on the planet, often relies on her busy life as a way to get discounts. She'll play dumb, fumble in her purse for a mystery coupon or flat-out admit to leaving her coupon at home. "Is there any way I can still get the discount?" she'll ask innocently, sometimes blaming her toddler for her lack of preparation. If the cashier happens to be a busy mom too, the common ground may be enough to earn her some savings.

Pointing Out a Flaw

Everything from slightly snagged sweaters to dented kids books could be discounted if you simply point out the flaw to the cashier. "Can you take anything off for that?" is a simple way of asking for a discount. Sure, you may want to buy the item no matter what, but the store doesn't know that. Next time you're about to pay full price for something remember, it doesn't hurt to ask.


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