Cancún Tourist Trap Tips by travelnut71
Cancún Tourist Traps: 85 reviews and 34 photos
Another scam I saw in Cancun, not the Gran Caribe Real resort but I did see this at the Oasis Cancun and the Grand, as well as any resort that has the word, "Palace" in it.
Couples or families with children are the target. They first question they ask you is if you are married. And, if you are on your honeymoon. Either or, they will mold their scam to you, and they are very friendly about it, they say, if you are married but not on your honeymoon, something like, "How many years you been married?! Oh it's time for another honeymoon! How about we give you some free breakfast at so and so resort as an excursion and 2 one hour massages for free and you can use the spa?" And then you will be escorted to the place where they will ask you for your credit card just to know that you are you. This isn't true! Be careful! Show them your passport instead and you will see it's not good enough of an identity for them! Imagine! This is basically timeshare!
Unique Suggestions: 1) The best way is to say that you don't own a credit card, or you tried your credit card at the airport and your company canceled it because you forgot to advise them you were traveling, it happened to me!
2) You can say that you don't own a credit card because you had too many debts :)
3) You can say that you have a cap limit on your card and that it's $500 dollars, your other one is at home and you want to keep this for shopping.
4) You can say you know it's a timeshare and you are not interested and most of all, insist that you won't buy to the person who will take care of you, he will refuse to continue at that point.
5) You can say you are not married but just friends, if you have no kids.
6) You can say you are not interested in the activities and you came here to rest and be alone with your family or friend.
Fun Alternatives: You can do some research and choose a hotel that doesn't harass you too much with this, the Gran Caribe Real was good in Cancun for this.
This happens quite often in all-inclusives in the Caribbean, it just happened to me at a 5 star (so they call it), hotel in Cancun, Gran Caribe Real resort, was the best except for the checkin. I had requested a floor higher than the first for the simple reason that I had two babies and I didn't want bugs in my room, after all, it is a tropical place and the first floor is usually a no-no. When the front desk person saw my request, he took it as an opportunity to try to make me pay $500 for an upgrade, so here is what he did.. even though I had called in the day before and someone else at the front desk confirmed my room was reserved and on the second floor, he found another room for us on the first floor that had no view, was moldy and dirty, hoping that we would pay an upgrade, OR, because it was a room with 2 beds instead of one that we requested, he hoped it was too much trouble for us to move the next day when he claimed our room was ready, so we'd stay there and upgrade. Guess what? The first room was not cleaned. We found close tags and half opened bottle of beer in the room.. when we went back to the front desk, a lady claimed there was room on the 2nd floor! The other guy was busy with another couple but when he saw us he ran over and shouted at the girl, in Spanish, "Don't tell them that I just told them there isn't any and I want to make my business!" Well, well, bad move, I speak Spanish! Then I requested to speak to a manager and guess what? He called in his friend also at front desk and he pretended to be his supervisor! They gave us another room on the first floor, and the next day my son had spots all over his left arm, neck and face. We found bugs in the bed and my son is only two, he takes up half of the bed. At the bottom of the bed, we noticed big stains of blood.. that bed was used and never changed sheets! We found the bugs and put them in a bag, and it was a bed bug in the end. The maid was very professional and they helped us move and provided great service on the second floor.
I don't know what to recommend for this trap, just beware and try to show that you are knowledgeable. When your checkin takes too long, they are looking to do this. Find out the name of the manager, THEIR manager ahead of time and escalate quickly!
Unique Suggestions: Call the resort ahead and request the name of the supervisor and either email him/her or talk to him/her, make them aware that YOU are aware of this trap and what to do if you encounter it. Sometimes managers aren't present when you check in til the next day, so, that's when they get you. When you learn the name of the front desk supervisor, you can always tell them and they will feel intimidated. If all else fails, tell them you will go to the media, or contact the resort higher management headquarters.
Fun Alternatives: Sometimes if it's not an all inclusive you may get better service since they don't have your money just yet, but this wasn't an option for us.
You will notice that every gas station in Cancun and it's surroundings don't take credit cards, they take only cash. Of course, you need gas, so you can pull in and I will tell you what happened to us, beware of the price they charge you. First, ask how much is it per liter or gallon, but I think it was in liters. Then do your math, you know if you have a car, it can't be more than about 50 liters.
Unique Suggestions: Here is what you should do when you pull up at a gas station.. first, you will see many young gas attendants coming at your car fighting for your service. Then they will put gas in your car, of course, no credit cards are accepted, I tried a few. Before they put gas, ask them to SHOW you the price per liter... ON THE GAS PUMP.. then you will see something funny... they have this black plastic cover, like a small blind that goes down as if to protect it from the rain.. but really, there are two lines on the gas pump.. the line above which they cover is the total price you should pay and the line they keep visible to you is the PRICE per liter.. so here is the deal.. they will charge you the price per liter which is more.. so what we did is walk up to the pump and lift the black cover.. when I showed the guy he was trying to screw us $10US dollars, it cost us about 45 US and he said it was 55.. so we gave him 60, but by the time he was gone is when I went and lifted the cover.. I showed him and he laughed and said he was so sorry like he didn't know! Then I showed him 55$ and instead of giving me back 15$ from the 60, he tried again to confuse me and give me back 5$ US.. this guy wasn't young either, he was about late thirties to mid forties. So beware. If I go back, which I am soon, I will get out of the car and lift the cover before he starts to pump. I filled my car near the La Isla gas station. Since you know now, I'd go there.. other gas stations may have other scams as well!
Fun Alternatives: You can always take the bus in Cancun if you are on the strip only, you don't need a car, the bus is under a dollar and passes every 5 minutes, completely safe, does the trip from one end of the strip to the real local downtown Cancun.. also, if you want to go to Tulum or Playa Del Carmen or Puerto Morelos, the bus is quite good and cheap, under 5$ US and air conditioned to those places.
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