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Q: I’ve had vacations almost ruined by overaggressive vendors. What’s the best way to handle them?

In some destinations, you may feel like a big, fat walking wallet besieged by anyone who’s selling something. Wherever I go, I learn how to say “No, thank you” in the local language and I say it firmly. I also wear sunglasses so that I can look at merchandise without vendors seeing me as a potential customer. For those just looking for a money handout, I occasionally give a little something—a pen, pack of crayons or a ball that I buy beforehand at a dollar store.

A travel writer extraordinaire, Michele Sponagle has visited more than 40 countries around the world. Send her your travel questions here.