I got this from PiPho Thread courtesy of Mr John Chua.
Sure, Photography is a nice hobby... also expensive at that... thats why most of us go to R Hidalgo to buy our equipment with our hard earned money.
There are a few tips I would like to share with you to make it pleasant way of parting your money
1. Most of the owners in R Hidalgo are friendly and customer oriented. But as you know Quiapo is such a notorius place where pick pocketers, snatchers and questionable characters roam freely in the area. The owners have been dealing with these elements for a long time and have learned a few hard lessons to deal with this situations. During the time I was drumming up their support for the R Hidalgo project, they have shared with me, their problems of Extortions, syndicates victimizing them, and Salisi gangs. They too have to deal with these problems.
2. For the newbies, hobbyists do your research on the equipment that you want before you go to R Hidalgo and canvass the best price.
3. If you are not sure of what you want or wants to do window shopping, choose a day or time when there are less people in the shop, so the owners or sales people can entertain you better. Friday is a bad day to go R Hidalgo - its Quiapo Church Day... many people attending the mass and passing thru Hidalgo.
4. As usual in any Asian country... Never be the first customer to go in When they open up their shop in the morning. Unless you have intention to buy something. It is a belief held by many business man, Buenas... Buena Mano... The first customer of the day will be the sign if the shop will have a good sale on that day... The owner will do anything (giving the best discount or best item... just to have the first sale of the day... Now, if you keep on asking for prices on this and that and finally leave the place... They don't feel good about it... Busit...) so if you are just window shopping... do it mid morning or late afternoon...
5. When you are just new in this hobby, be friendly to the owner... sure you may canvass the price of the item that you are interested to buy. They understand that. But the important factor here is deciding where to buy the item. Are you more comfortable in doing business with Wilson (Avenue) maybe because he takes time to explain how the item works or Going to Mayer's Ramon because he gives the best price... there are many reasons why you buy the item with this shop. BUT remember dont haggle too much... everyone get the item from their supplier at different prices too. You must leave a margin of profit for them, because kung babaratin mo ng husto. they might give in to you But they dont gain much profit from dealing with you. Remember the competition in Hidalgo is strong, thats leaves little profit na... volume na lang kikita sila.
6. By having a good relationship with the shop owner, they will help you keep that relationship throughout the years. They will tell you if certain products are defective, they will inform you when they expect the prices to drop, they will help you look for the things you need but they dont have them.
7. Sometimes, they might not be able to give you big discount on certain items. the reason behind it would probably their acquisition price is higher. Nevertheless if the price difference is small... still get it from them. it will even out in the long run...
Remember, once you bought something from his shop, he will remember you or else you are just one of hundreds of people entering his shop everyday...
WHAT DO YOU GET WHEN YOU HAVE ESTABLISHED A GOOD RELATIONSHIP WITH THE SHOP OWNER.
1. Trust - he will help and advise you when you are in doubt about certain items.
2. He will protect you and your investment... if you have any problem with any of the items you bought from him.. he will find a way to help you by... replacing it, getting the right party to fix it. at NO Cost..
3. You will been given a credit line... installment plan with zero interest... maybe trial for new equipment... if there are promo items... he will inform you right away
4. He will help you grow as a successful photographer in turn more business for him.