It’s one of the most popular items that tourists buy when vacationing in Mexico.
However, travelers to Isla Mujeres should beware of a scam running in the tourist hotspot when it comes to selling this popular item to visitors.
Tourists Falling Victim
According to several reports from Isla Mujeres, there has been a sharp increase in tourists to the area reporting to local officials that they feel they have been taken advantage of and mistreated by some of the jewelers on the popular vacation island.
Some have complained of broken jewelry purchased in the area, such as rings with stones that are not properly secured and fall out. They are left trying to find a way to locate the jeweler that sold them the item and turning to an Isla Mujeres social media group for assistance.
For others, the experience makes the traveler feel so taken advantage of by local merchants that they remark on social media that they never want to return to Isla Mujeres and urge others to avoid visiting the beach resort destination as well.
Targeting of Visitors
A common practice among several of the jewelry salespeople is to focus their outreach efforts on travelers recognized by wearing the colored wristbands used for nightclubs and adventure travel excursions in the Mexican Caribbean.
Reports from some of the victims claim that store owners acted like they were representatives of the nightclub or adventure travel destination to get the attention of nearby tourists and then lure them into the store.
Victims reported they were sold gold and silver jewelry items, which ultimately ended up being fake.
High Sales Pressure
Meanwhile, other visitors to Isla Mujeres have complained about aggressive sales practices by jewelry vendors when simply browsing the merchandise for sale.
One tourist remarked in a published report that essentially her family was forced into a store and aggressively sold items. That was despite them telling the store owner that they did not have money to make a purchase.
When it appeared that they were not going to buy an item, the victims were pushed out of the store by the store representative and told to stop wasting their time.
Tourism Officials Get Involved
The negative comments on social media and the numerous complaints to law enforcement caught the eye of tourism officials to look into the complaints from the travelers that feel they were scammed.
Many of the scam complaints have focused on one specific store on the island that is well-known for catering to tourists. Victims have requested that the store be raided to review the alleged fake items being offered for sale.
At this time, local officials are working to investigate the claims and provide service for the affected travelers. Especially since it affects the overall perception of the popular beach island getaway for travelers.
What Visitors Need To Know
Many people enjoy buying popular Mexican gold and silver items when on vacation in the Mexican Caribbean. Fortunately, most of the store operators on Isla Mujeres provide high-quality service and well-crafted legitimate items to visitors on the island.
However, there are obviously some that travelers need to exercise caution with.
If something feels uncomfortable about an overly aggressive salesperson outside of a jewelry store, travelers should continue looking for one of the many where a professional staffs them.
Likewise, if they are aggressively handled by the salesperson or forced to purchase an item, travelers should report any unwanted actions to the supportive law enforcement on the island and work to complete the appropriate report.
Only when travelers work with local tourism officials to push back against this type of negative sales activity on the island will things start to change with the involved vendors.
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