Living in Cali. [week 1] Shopping basics
Photo courtesy of Don’s World Coin Gallery.
Shopping in United States, California specifically is a serious business for foreigners. Knowing the local currency, written and unwritten rules do save us from hassle and being weird. Naah, the locals are very helpful :p
A colleague of mine took an effort to teach me basic and essential stuff to know when buying stuffs. Those are how to use the coins, queuing up, sales tax and tips.
Well, to use the paper dollar money is kind of straight forward as the note do obviously indicate the value it holds. However for the coins. you need to get use to them. In malaysia, we have coins of 1cent(just abolished) 5, 10, 20 and 50cent. While here in States, theres 1cent, 5cent, 10cent and 25cent. Not only that, they have specific names too, where 1cent =penny, 5cent=nickel, 10cent=dime and 25cent=quarter.
Well, you can always pay in bigger money and get the change, but collecting all the small change is not a good idea for the pocket >_<
When queuing up to pay stuff at the counter, the 2nd person and the rest should be few feet away from the 1st person that is currently paying at the counter. This is more like an unwritten rule, although in a good side it provides privacy (people cant see your cards and money in wallet). Well, I’ve seen this even in McD and Mervyns.
State of California do impose sales tax of 7.5% on every item sold in whatever form, from electrical appliances to food. So when you want to pay for something, must remember the 7.5%. This also applies to anything ordered from outside CA, and going in. Oh, each state will have different kind of tax and rate.
For electrical items, there will be and additional charge, that is the recycle fee per item. I believe the fee is fixed at USD6. Not sure is the whole United State need to pay this fee.
Im not sure about this, but tips is serious business here. It is said that the tips should be in 15% range. Ussualy tips is given to shop/person who serviced us, most likely restaurants. Even my cellphone do have tips and sales tax calculator LOL
Theres a lot more fun knowledge and experience i gained while being here, and I will share more later :p