Living The High Life: Luxury Store Etiquette

There are certain unwritten rules to shopping at any luxury store that you need to be aware of before you even enter one, and whether or not you practice this etiquette may determine the quality of service you receive at the store. Here are a few ground rules:
Despite what you see in movies and on TV, one cannot simply walk into high-end fashion boutiques in Dubai and treat the sales personnel as if they were servants at your beck and call.
Use the Three Golden Words
Most people seem to assume that ‘Sorry’, ‘Please’ and ‘Thank You’ should disappear from their vocabulary if they can afford to shop at a luxury store. The truth is that you should be on your best behaviour and be as polite and as courteous as you can be. Treat the sales people with respect; what they do is a job not an obligation, and being rude and overbearing to them only increases your chances of poor service. If they are truly terrible, quietly ask to speak to a manager and make a complaint; don’t make a scene. You can window shop all you want and walk out without buying a thing – as long as you’ve been polite about it.
Be Dressed Accordingly
As unfair as it is, many luxury stores will judge you on your appearance and the most exclusive ones will not even let you in unless they can verify from your dress that you can afford their wares. Treat your shopping excursion as a special outing. You don’t need to load down with name brand accessories, but if you are walking along a street of jewellery companies in Dubai, then avoid wearing cheap plastic costume jewellery when you go into one. Similarly, wear a pair of good name brand shoes paired with a normal dress or suit when you go shoe shopping. Learn the balance between ostentatious and wannabe.
Never Ask for Discounts
Few luxury stores will ever put up discounts for any of their products as it is considered an insult to the designer. If they do however, it will be marked clearly. Therefore, never ask a sales person whether they can give you a discount, and do not stoop into bargaining. Leave that for the farmer’s market on a weekend. You will only place the sales person in an uncomfortable position as they work on commission most of the time and refusing a discount will often lose them the sale, while trying to negotiate a discount for a customer will cost them their job. It is considered a luxury brand because the price is fixed and the product is exclusive, therefore do not denigrate it.