You can find open-air markets in many countries, and Haiti is no exception to that. While they are certainly interesting to see and visit, it is striking how many people are selling something in the streets, outside the regular markets. In Cap Haïtien, this means you can buy almost anything from any place in the streets without having to go to the real market. Many vendors actively roam the streets with their wares, offering them to passer-bys, going to crowded places like crossings or the bus station where they can find more potential customers.
It is therefore easy to buy fruit, drinks, snacks, souvenirs from street sellers virtually anywhere in Cap Haïtien. On top, young guys walk around with phones offering phone services to people who do not have a mobile phone. Apart from the mobile street sellers, many people have a small business from their home, and often just put a small table outside their door and put some goods on it for sale. Most of these home businesses are very small scale, and probably the best salespeople will end up opening a real shop somewhere in the future. In all, it is amazing to see how creative Haitians are at finding something to sell. They either come from the countryside to sell fruit, make their own small things for use, like hats, to sell in the streets, or just sell every day stuff like food items or sunglasses from their homes.
With a very high unemployment and extreme poverty (Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere), it is admiring how people seem to fight and struggle to eek out a living in any honest way possible. Even with the occasional foreign visitor, they seem to be very honest: only very few try to ask for outrageous prices, while most Haitians will just ask you the price they would ask to any Haitian. As a visitor, the biggest advantages of these street sellers, apart from the ease with which you can do your shopping, is the fact that you can actively and directly support the local economy.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Cap Haïtien street sellers (). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Cap Haïtien street sellers.
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