This is what I learnt from my recent tour to Agra, the city which hosts the majestic wonder of the world i.e Taj Mahal .I was visiting the place with my friend . I was there once earlier but that time I was in a large group and the marketing skills of the Agra people were left unobserved by me .So what did I observe this time ?
I left to Agra from Delhi by Taj Express at around 7:30 AM and I was in Agra by 10:30 AM.After entering the Agra station , I went to comesum , A multicuisine restaurant chain by Indian railways . Eventhough the one at Agra sucks, I had to eat there as its the best option available.Comesum at H.Nizamuddin rocks and it is the favourite 24 hr destination for delhiites.
After having my bfast cum lunch , I came out of station. To my surprise a group of 10 autowalas pounced on me and my friend . But I decided not to go with them and I bargained for a sharing auto who agreeed to take me for 20 rs to Taj. Once I got into the auto , that guy and his assistant convinced me in such a great way that I finally agreed for day long trip to Taj, Redfort and all in his auto for Rs 160 . He actually tells you in such a polite way " Sir Jindagi mein sirf ek hi baar aate ho , ab bhi aap kharcha nahi karte ho [ Sir you come here once in a life , then why you hesitate to spend here. spend and enjoy] " .
After that the autowala took me to the Taj . Taj is wonderful as usual . But Im bothered about the Yamuna on its back which doesn't have water .I hope Yamuna gets water someday.
People who have got their guides already from other locations are warning their tourists not to buy anything from the shopkeepers in and around Taj , whom they call hawkers ,who sell marble articles for Rs 20 and all . They warn you that once you are in , they can't get you out of the bargain and they will make you buy the thing .After the day is over I was back in the auto to go to the station. Every autowala in which you sit asks you whether you wanna do some shopping . You say yes or no , still they take you to a shop named Government shopping complex . I know that before and I told him that I don't wanna go at all . But he started requesting again that We need not buy anything . We just need to visit the shop and the autowala's number gets noted there which at festival times will be used for lottery . I reluctantly went inside as that person was begging me. I was not even interested to see the articles in the shop.But my friend who is new to the place, started looking at articles. Then a very aged and experienced salesman came there and started to market his products. He started with marble articles , next sarees and finally shoes. Everytime he shows you a product he will show you the optimised priced one first to attract you towards his product. Once you find any of their product fascinating , he will show you the costly ones which will obviously the best ones available in his shop . After seeing that If you don't buy it or you tell reasons like you don't have money and all , he will say " Arey yaar , paiso kheliye sochte ho , cheez dekho aap [ Cmon , why do you think of money when you have a very good product infront of you ? ] " . He made me do a shopping worth 1,000 in his shop with his skills . I wanted to shows the guy to you folks . But my camera was outta battery at that moment .
Everywhere you go in Agra , people will attract you with their words and marketing skills . Be careful when you go there as a lot of hawkers are waiting for you . The only place I recommend for shopping is sadarbazar as it has enough shops and shopping locations . Agra has nothing much to be seen except Taj and Red Fort .So its better to go by Taj express from delhi in morning and return by same in evening .
If you have any experiences in Agra share it .