Thursday, January 06, 2011

Discounts and Brechós

While it’s a pretty well-known fact that you can barter at street fairs and the like, it’s worth noting that even brick and mortar stores in Brazil are often willing to give a discount for cash. Sometime’s it’s stated and automatic; other times, you have to ask for it. By not using a credit or debit card, you save them a 5% fee, so that’s the minimum discount they should give you for a cash payment, but depending on how much you spend, some places will do 10-15%. It definitely doesn’t hurt to ask! Just today, I bought a pair of heels at an outlet store in CittaAmerica. They were samples and had a few marks on them. Nothing really visible unless you had them up to your nose, but I asked for a discount anyway and they gave me 20% for cash without a fuss. :)

Americans and Canadians seem more open to the idea of used-clothing stores than Brazilians, though that's starting to change as high-fashion (or at least, wearable fashion) brechós appear on the scene. Basically, these are consignment stores, and if you've found a favorite, as I have, you'll want to keep it a secret from any of your friends who are your size! Fashion Carioca, also in CittaAmerica, in Barra, is fairly decent. A little on the Goodwill side of the scale, they fill their rack space with out of date prints and jerseys, a couple of pricey Prada shirts, and a nice selection of better priced and more wearable items from mid-range Brazilian brands. Sometimes you can find unique things at very affordable prices; today I walked out with a pair of sandals I can wear with shorts or dresses (my summer shoes have all fallen apart) and a cropped marine-inspired cotton shirt with buckles and ties that's going to translate well between the beach and the AC. See?

(Thanks, Mom and Dad. Christmas present shopping!)

But my favorite brechó? That's a secret shared only among friends. Preferably ones with small feet and shorter torsos...

1 comment:

Ali la Loca said...

Oh I totally want to know about the secret brecho. I definitely have smaller feet (37) but would probably give you a run for your money in the long torso department. Can I know if I promise just to shop for shoes? :)