Dominican Republic Tourist Traps

  • Tour buses outside Carmen Gift Shop
    Tour buses outside Carmen Gift Shop
    by SWFC_Fan
  • Carmen Gift Shop, Puerto Plata
    Carmen Gift Shop, Puerto Plata
    by SWFC_Fan
  • Tourist Traps
    by Losse

Dominican Republic Tourist Traps

  • Peddlers on the beach.

    Everything around the beach area was Dollars, you get peddlers on the beach all day long, everything is charged for, even the trip over the east side of the beach to pick up the jet skis. Make sure you ask the full price before you pay, as refusal often offends.

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  • Airport

    What came as a big surprise to us when we arrived the Puerto Plata airport was the men who were too `helpful` with our luggage. We didn`t bring more than we could handle ourselves, so we really would like to handle it to the buses ourselves. The problem was that you had to physically `sit` on the luggage to prevent the luggage-men from taking it....

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  • hide from the 2 legged sharks

    Sales people here are BAD..... they try selling u on everything from excursions all the way to TIMESHARES. They use very high pressure sales tactics and even go out of the way to harass you and your personal and finacial life.. i was not impressed just say NO!!!!!

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  • Watch out for your bags....

    At the airport, those friendly people waiting to take your bags don't take no for an answer, both when trying to take your bags to carry them, & when trying to get a tip! Now I'm not against tipping at all, I realise alot of them rely on that for money - but give me a chance to get my money out first - 'tip, tip', lol :) Have some Dominican...

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  • small trap

    almost everybody who goes to DR and like all travel sites, recuerdos is one thing that we like to buy. paintings are very "eye ketchy". and i bought one.and bring one is a very good experience when yu have to argue the best price for it and try to achive the best price... be prepared to a "hard fight" with local vendors!i´ll be back! ask the...

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  • Hotel Beach

    If you go to the hotel beach you will probably be visited by some local trying to sell coconut water, recuerdos, whatever! They all seem to be selling the same artefacts, from morning till the end of the afternoon. Hotels usually refer in their brochures "private beach". It means that locals don't go to the beach to sunbath, but apparently it...

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  • Beach Sellers

    Every now and then, even on the private beach, sellers would come with their wares. The usual stuff, bracelets, coconuts, and cigarettes.I bought a little wooden statue that I talked the guy down to 20 for. I thought I got a great deal. When I got to the market in Santo Domingo, I saw them being sold for 10-15 dollars. However, I didn't see the one...

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  • Santo Domingo market

    The tour took us the local market. It was mostly just a dumping point for tourists. Every place expects you to haggle your price. There are a lot of the same types of shops selling the same type of things, so if you don't get the price you want, walk away to the next store. But most people were not in your face or rude.Oh, and make sure you have...

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  • Taxis that cost a fortune

    If you must hail a taxi be sure to do it away from a "tourist hotel" and negotiate the price beforehand. The prices vary so greatly from one taxi driver to the next it is enough to make a person crazy. Usually you can work out a deal, but one guy tried to charge us $20 USD for a 2 km drive. That is way more expensive than any cab ride I've ever...

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  • Prieto Tours

    Prieto Tour was the company we did the City tour with. It was supposed to be full day tour. We paid in advance but only received the 1/2 day tour. When we took it up with them, William in their office stated we only paid 1/2 day. When we insisted he give the hotel voucher back to show us it showed full day.But impossible to hassle with them about...

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  • Hair braiding

    Sometimes, locals on the beach will offer to braid your hair for money. Someone offered to braid hair extentions into my hair (I had short hair at the time) with beads for 600 pesos, but I didn't do it. It's possible to haggle the price, but sometimes if you get to know some local people outside the beach, they might braid your hair for...

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  • All Inclusives are limiting for seeing...

    Folks inside compounds are taught to fear what is outside the grounds.This is a ploy to control 100% of your tourist dollars!They don'y even want you to buy tours from outside agents...so they create fear tactics to keep you from even talking to outside "locals"You really miss the true joys of travel, when staying in a "staged controled...

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  • Alcohol and Coffee Shopping

    Do NOT if you can avoid purchasing any alcohol or coffee on the hotel premises, be it the stores or the sellers on the beach.If you plan a trip into ANY of the cities, do go into the GROCERY store and purchase these items there. The prices in the groceries are fixed, so both locals and tourists pay the same price.We bought 2 bottles of rum in the...

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  • Modes of Transportation

    Be aware of the cost of a taxi from the hotels to any location. For this example I will use Punta Cana. My husband and I stayed in Punta Cana for a week, we needed to get to the town of Higuey which is the closest town one hour away.The taxi driver quoted us 65 USD return, his big "seller" was the fact it was air-conditioned, and safer.NOTE: Travel...

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  • Sosua

    During my stay in 1995 I spent with friends a weekend in Sosua. I remember Sosua as the most terrible place on the entire Island. It was very touristic with these terrible German beer bars at the beach. Don't want to imagine how Sosua looks nowaday. And a question what I really asked myself several times: Why is everywhere rubbish in the streets?...

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  • Duarte St., Boca Chica -Beach Drinks

    I consider myself a fairly aware traveler, but even the best of us get taken advantage of at times. This occurred in Boca Chica on Duarte St. The day before I had gone to a birthday party and was befriended by a nice Dominican man who could speak English. He showed me how to play Dominoes, etc. and I bought him a couple beers. The next day, he saw...

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  • You will all do it...every...

    You will all do it...every single one of you will buy to much in the Dominican Republic...make sure you make a nice price !

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  • VENDORS ARE NO FOOLS

    WHEREVER YOU GO ON THE ISLAND YOU WILL FIND THAT MANY OF THE THINGS THAT THE VENDORS WILL TRY TO SELL YOU ARE THE SAME THROUGHOUT. IF YOU REALLY WANT SOMETHING BE PATIENT IN BUYING IT. IF THE PRICE ISN'T RIGHT FOR YOU SIMPLY WALK AWAY BECAUSE THEY'LL EITHER COME CHASING YOU TO BUY IT OR YOU WILL FIND SOMEWHERE ELSE WHERE YOU CAN BUY IT FOR YOUR...

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  • Explore around

    Do not sit around the hotel all day,do go on the odd trip and see the island.Be careful of beggers on the beach. Another great beach Another beautiful beach

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  • Do be careful on the beach if...

    Do be careful on the beach if people try and sell you something,always ask a price before saying yes.I was forced onto a horse ,even though i kept saying no,then taken up the beach a couple of times and then the bloke said£20 please.When i refused,he became abit narsty.

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  • One of the nice things about...

    One of the nice things about the resorts in Punta Cana is that there are no vendors on the beach at your hotel. If you want to shop, you go to the little marketplaces along the beach, between various properties. There is one between the Barcelo Bavaro Palace and the Melia Caribe/Tropicale. At the marketplace there are 10-20 vendors all selling...

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  • If you go shopping at the...

    If you go shopping at the Dominican Republic be carefull with the prices. Don't pay too much! Also be carefull with people who try to steel from the tourists, there aren't many people who do that but you do have them. Just like you probably have them all over the world. Most Dominicans are very friendly, and helpfull, but there is a very little...

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  • The local venders are very...

    The local venders are very pushy, save yourself some trouble and don't make eye contact unless you are actually interested in an item. Remember to barter, never pay asking price,try to get it for half that. Buy cigars at the markets at your own risk, many are counterfeit.

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  • If you are planning to stay at...

    If you are planning to stay at an all inclusive hotel don't shop in the hotelshops. Things are a lot more expensive here than they are in a local city. Try intstead to visit a nearby city like Puerta Plata (if you for example live in Playa Dorada) and check out the prices at a supermarket, you will save a lot.Plus the fact that you will get the...

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  • Better to speak Spanish. Not...

    Better to speak Spanish. Not many traps when you stay in a resort.TIME SHARE PEOPLE:Don't listen to the people saying they have a present for you although they are working in the hotel (Time share people).HOTEL DOCTOR:Don't get sick and bring your own drugs, don't go to see the doctor from the hotel. The cost of the visit is extremely high, the...

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  • We didn't fall for it because...

    We didn't fall for it because we had been forwarned, but - street vendors selling 'Ivory' which was obviously platic, and of course the fake amber (which the country is famous for). Watch out for the braiding ladies - they get you right off the bus and just start braiding your hair. If you want your hair braided, negotiate a price before they start...

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  • The prices for souvenirs on...

    The prices for souvenirs on the beach, they are too high, way too high, so go down with the price, and go down way to low (if they can insult you, you can insult them) and just work your way up from there.And a tip about this: if you are on a price you want something for, and he is still too hig, just walk away (there are plenty of stores with the...

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  • This one is for the woman...

    This one is for the woman going there: If you walk along the water on the beach, sometimes men will start walking with you and talking to you, some of them are male prostitutes who will demand money after the walk

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  • Always negotiate prices,...

    Always negotiate prices, handle your own luggage and buy your own drinks at local bars. When shopping - especially at the local markets, don't be afraid to bargain! You can usually cut the price by half.

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  • The locals are after your...

    The locals are after your money and will sell you any old crap. When taking a bus tour they will drive you to a dodgy shop in the middle of nowhere and will wait until everyone bought something one does not need...Also, watch out for people who will want to make your hair into millions of little pleads. I managed to keep my hair 'natural' for the...

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  • All of the tour buses to Santo...

    All of the tour buses to Santo Domingo dump tourists in the 'commercial' area to buy souvenirs (the tour guides get commission). Most of the stuff is crap and not even made in the Dominican Republic (a lot is imported from Haiti where the standard of living is even lower than the DR). There are some real craft shops one block away from the main...

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  • When visiting shops along the...

    When visiting shops along the beach, it is easy to get sidetracked by the vendors. If you give them a polite 'no thank you' they will allow you to look around. They are harmless, but it can be aggrivating if you are being contstantly followed around.

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  • ..my personal belief is to...

    ..my personal belief is to avoid the 'tourist enclaves' and stay in the abundent pensions...particularly on the North Shore...the enclaves are cheap and easy but all of the beaches in the DR are public...and you can wander in as you please..

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  • When you go out of your...

    When you go out of your resort you don't have the feeling that you are safe, there are guards with shotguns on the entrance of your resort. And when you pass by some vendors they really are pushing you to buy something at a not so friendly tone.

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  • When driving (in a rental car)...

    When driving (in a rental car) you may be stopped by the police. It seems like there were cops/military men with machine-guns every mile along the highways. I dont know how many times I was stopped and asked for money.You should complain to your embassy.

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  • HAWKERS OF AN ARRAY OF ITEMS...

    HAWKERS OF AN ARRAY OF ITEMS PLY THE TOURIST TRADE ALONG THE BEACHES...(I BOUGHT THE SHIRT HE IS HOLDING).

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  • Beware of locals selling...

    Beware of locals selling things on the beachs. If you're really interested in buying something, you can always bring their prince down. Offer them about half of what they're asking and they'll give you a better prince. don't take the first offer.

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  • All shop owners are named...

    All shop owners are named 'Cheapie, Cheapie', today is always a 'Special Day', and watch out for 'Bargain Charlie'. Never buy at the offered price, always haggle for the lowest price. Gift shops are usually called, Gift Shop #1, Gift Shop #2, Gift Shop #3, you get the picture!

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  • I had read it everywhere...

    I had read it everywhere before we went; hold on to youre bags when you get out from the airport. I thought; oh no, they are NOT gonna take MY bag! But oh yes, they did! And for someone to RUN for 20 sek, with my bag to the bus, cost me 100RDS. So, hold on to youre bags, fellow travelers!

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  • Before i went to DR i read all...

    Before i went to DR i read all information i could get my hands on, and everywhere was the warning about people that works on the airport, they snatch youre bag a run to the touristbusses 30 seconds away! Then the demand a large amount of money, and after a 11 hour flight you are NOT in the mood to argue.. And then there are the beach-salesmen....

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  • 1. Hold on to youre bags when...

    1. Hold on to youre bags when you go out from the airport, and don´t let the carriers take it, ´cause that can be a expensive experiance!2. When you buy something, always check that the salesman give you what you acculy bought! I was fooled twice, once of a streetsalesman and once at the Galeris del ambar in Puerto Plata!

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  • DON'T CHANGE MONEY ON THE...

    DON'T CHANGE MONEY ON THE STREET. THEY ALWAYS SHORT YOU. WATCH YOUR WALLET! BACKPACKS ARE BETTER THEN PURSES. DON'T HAVE ANYTHING IN THE OUTSIDE POCKETS. DON'T FALL ASLEEP ON PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION. WHEN YOU BUY SOMETHING- LOOK AROUND AND SEE WHAT THE NATIONALS ARE PAYING FIRST. DON'T ASK HOW MUCH- JUST PAY, AND DON;T EXPECT THE VENDERS OR...

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  • Do not book off site tours...

    Do not book off site tours through hotel. They charge a premium of around 20 - 30% and you can find the same tour companies in town. I would recommend Melissa tours in Sosua for whitewater rafting and other stuff, they operate an operation called Get Wet that is excellent.

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  • Don't go shopping at Plaza...

    Don't go shopping at Plaza Bavaro. There are not really any bargains here that we could find. The shopkeepers will try just about anything to get you to buy something...they entice you by giving you a small gift. Once in a store, it can be very difficult to leave. They will tell you that it is their birthday..I couldn't believe how many people were...

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Dominican Republic Tourist Traps

Reviews and photos of Dominican Republic tourist traps posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Dominican Republic sightseeing.
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