Common Kenyan phrases you will never miss when shopping at local shops and vibandas 


Lately , I have been highly involved in business . Refer to my previous article >> daisy wa mahindi. Its not always easy especially for small business people since many people take advantage of their being “inferior ” that’s why they are manipulated .
We all know of this irony where one never bargains when they shop in malls or when they choose to eat at posh restaurants ,right ? But when it comes to buying something on the street ,take an example buying fruits from a mama along the streets ,who has a child at her back , trying to make ends meet but unfortunately we want her to sell her fruits at throw away price but because she wants to have something for the day , she willingly accepts to go at a loss.
     Do you get that logic?
Anyway .

If you are a retailer or just a customer , there are terms you will not miss hearing ,well if you shop at local shops not at malls .

Courtesy of uncle Marashe , a great annimator

 1. Unataka ya ngapi? Ntakutengenezea bei.
This is often the first thing when a customer asks “how much” . It’s more likely that the more you take , the lesser you will have to pay . This drives the urge to buy , right ? Like when you are told the price of the item goes for ksh.1000 ,it’s more likely that you will take the item at a discount .

2. Mwisho ni ngapi?

This always puzzles me . When you mention the price to the customer, they go ahead to ask the last price of it .
For good bargainers ,when the last price is mentioned, they go ahead to mention theirs , for example if the last price is 350 , it’s likely that one might 250 and persist at that and mentions how next time they will bring more customers or has been a loyal customer so that price is fair .
In most instances , the customer hands in a ksh 1000 note and you are left to wonder .

3. Customer kupima ni free

This is so obvious , if you have never heard of this term ,where do you shop at ?
Anyway, I won’t blame you ,there are some places where you will not  fit the item for instance a shoe if you don’t  seem to have plans. That’s right and just to some point because some people will soil your item or waste your time .
4. Acha niende ,ntarudi

If you have never mentioned this to a retailer or wherever you have gone to shop, chances are that you hardly window-shop . Most people who say this are 70% not likely to return , don’t even expect them but if they return , appreciate their efforts of coming back and reward them for that ,a discount on the item will do.

5. Niongezee ya discount

My people, we love discounts on items we buy ,you will notice that we are most likely to buy items that have “buy one get one free” .
At a local fruits kibanda, when a customer purchases fruits worth a given amount , they often request an addition because of the quantity they have bought ,”moja ya kiongezo” is what is always the term.

Now you are on the know , looking forward to your next visit on the blog .feel free to leave a comment, share and subscribe .

PS: the words in bold  are in Swahili since my target audience is the people of kenya. 

Remember the deadline for the ban on plastic bags is fast approaching.


  1. haha true, we s’times forget that this informal sector is everything we need at a bargain price..cjui wakue na a fixed price on items? bt that will be a challenge still.

  2. My favourite shopping term has always been “naenda hivi narudi niekee tu”haha,it always saves a lot especially when the item is expensive than u expected


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