Quintana Roo Tourist Rip-offs Continue
TYT original reporting
By Stewart Mandy
MAHAHUAL, QUINTANA ROO – I’ve written before about the rip-off prices charged for certain products and services at tourist oriented establishments in Cancun and other places along the Riviera Maya. Cancun Airport is the master of this practice, with its $40 peso bottles of water, $120 peso slices of pizza, and $450 peso taxi rides to even the closest destinations. Over time, I’ve learned to avoid the rip-offs as far as possible, and always advise visitors to try to do the same.
Today though, I heard of the prices being charged at Señor Frogs in Costa Maya, which really seem to take the cake (or in this case, the taco).
Costa Maya, for those who don’t know, is an ‘invented’ tourist village, near the town of Mahahual, in southern Quintana Roo. It’s about as close to the middle of nowhere as you can get in Quintana Roo. It’s a cruise port, pure and simple, and the main customers at the ‘authentic’ tourist village are the passengers from the many cruise ships which call there. A captive audience, of whom the merchants are apparently keen to take advantage.
According to the receipt I received, the rip-off began with cans of Coke at $45.50 pesos each; continued with a Quesadilla plate for $188.50 pesos, and reached its peak with a plate of Beef Tacos for $253 pesos.
A 15% tip (not stated as optional) was automatically added, bringing the grand total for two basic food plates and three sodas to $664.70 pesos. The final insult was the offered payment in dollars of US$51.13 – an exchange rate of 13 pesos to the dollar, when the market rate is currently 14.65.
By Stewart Mandy
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Born in Europe, raised in the Middle East, and a long-time resident in the Americas, Stewart has been based in Mérida, Yucatan since 2010, and has lived and worked worldwide in the media, travel, tourism and transportation industries for well over 20 years. His local contacts and global knowledge provide him with unmatched access to the stories ‘behind the stories’ and he likes to take you to the places that others don’t or won’t go.
From the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego, from Moscow to Melbourne, from Bergen to Buenos Aires, Stewart has been there. Chances are, wherever you are heading, he knows the score.
In addition to The Yucatan Times, Stewart contributes (or has contributed) to “The Examiner” (www.examiner.com), “Business Briefings”, “Cruise & Ferry Magazine” and “The Apollo Magazine”. He is a former editor of “rolling pin CRUISE” magazine.He can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
You can join him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/meridawriter, follow him on Twitter @stewartmandy or visit his website at www.stewartmandy.com or his blog at http://tolocsandaluxes.blogspot.mx/
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