Practical Life in Casablanca


Shopping in Casablanca


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Morocco is a colorful world with beautiful local shops and vibrant souks (markets).

Bargaining

Haggling is not just expected, it is necessary. In bazaars and markets you should expect prices to be inflated (especially for obvious visitors) and they expect for the price to be bargained down. If the final price is between half and two-thirds of the original asking price, both parties should be happy.

    Tips for a great deal:
  • Feel free to accept tea from the shopkeeper if it is offered, it doesn't obligate you to buy
  • Offer half the asking price and bargain from there
  • Be polite and have a sense of humor while bargaining
  • Walking away is an way to get the price down
  • Pay what you think the item is worth and don't worry if you could have paid less
  • There are always more opportunities

Specialties

Classic tourist souvenirs like postcards and trinkets abound, but there are also Moroccan specialties.

  • Dates: Dates are plentiful, and should cost about 10 Dhm for an orange box
  • Leatherware: Markets are full of leather goods
  • Argan Oil: This oil is used to form many products such as soap and cosmetics
  • Tagines: Classic Moroccan cooking dishes made of clay
  • Birad: Classic Moroccan tea pots
  • Djellabah: Classic Moroccan designer robe with a hood. Often come in intricate designs and some are suited for warm weather while other heavier styles are for the cold.
  • Carpets: Genuine handmade Berber carpets can be purchased direct from the artisans who weave them. Sellers might engage in a hard sale, but realize you can always say no. For the best deals you can go to smaller villages, such as Anzal.

Souks

Souks are a sight to see and a perfect place to find traditional craftworks.

Bab El Jedid - in the old medina.
Boulevard Tahar-El-Alaoui - Long market following the line of the ancient ramparts.
Copperware Souk - is beside the Great Mosque and the old mellah.

Supermarkets

Supermarket chains in Casablanca include Acima and Marjane. They offer well-stocked stores, complete with liquor. Many even stay open for non-Muslims during Ramadan.

Buying Liquor

Stores that sell alcohol keep it in a gated area or locking cases. This is because the liquor section is closed by law up to an hour before the store. There is a fine for selling liquor after hours. Also, up to a week before Ramadan and through the holiday, liquor is removed from the case. Only foreigners and non-Muslim Moroccans may purchase alcohol during this time and it may be required that foreigners show the guard their passport.

Update 10/01/2012



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