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Jasonchili

Shady tactics at Grand Turk

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Not a lot to do here. The swim up bar is fun but the pool is WAY too shallow. Like barely waist deep. They need to fix that.

 

The worst part is the shady people trying to make you pay for beach chairs. They don’t mark their chairs as costing $ to rent but then get really aggressive after you have set up. I pushed back and the guy had a very shady local security guard come over. He was clearly on the take from the seat seller. Carnival really needs to do something about this practice... and the nefarious locals trying to shake you down everywhere.

 

Also the drinks are way more expensive than on the ship, 100 yards away.

 

We left to go back to the ship after 90 minutes. The ship: where your cheers package works, food is free and the pool is more than 2 feet deep.

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Not a lot to do here. The swim up bar is fun but the pool is WAY too shallow. Like barely waist deep. They need to fix that.

 

The worst part is the shady people trying to make you pay for beach chairs. They don’t mark their chairs as costing $ to rent but then get really aggressive after you have set up. I pushed back and the guy had a very shady local security guard come over. He was clearly on the take from the seat seller. Carnival really needs to do something about this practice... and the nefarious locals trying to shake you down everywhere.

 

Also the drinks are way more expensive than on the ship, 100 yards away.

 

We left to go back to the ship after 90 minutes. The ship: where your cheers package works, food is free and the pool is more than 2 feet deep.

 

Wow. Was this recent? I knew about the beach chair scam but this is the first I have seen concerning the "security guard." That is scary.

 

Yes, Carnival needs to do something. I'd hate to just have to skip this port and stay on the ship but we have kids and our elderly parents to think of and I wont have them pushed around by local thugs looking to scam us. I wrote the head of HAL , the Carnival line we cruise, and Carnival a snail mail letter asking them to look into the pushy beach chair scammers. Might be good for me and other folks to send off some emails about this new development as well. They don't know unless we tell them.

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Wow. Was this recent? I knew about the beach chair scam but this is the first I have seen concerning the "security guard." That is scary.

 

 

 

Yes, Carnival needs to do something. I'd hate to just have to skip this port and stay on the ship but we have kids and our elderly parents to think of and I wont have them pushed around by local thugs looking to scam us. I wrote the head of HAL , the Carnival line we cruise, and Carnival a snail mail letter asking them to look into the pushy beach chair scammers. Might be good for me and other folks to send off some emails about this new development as well. They don't know unless we tell them.

 

 

 

We are there today. Our friend went to beach while we toured. Once he got settled in a chair and umbrella, a man came by and told him to give him $25 for the beach chair or leave. Another man nearby ( cruise ship guest) told my friend to tell the man to “ leave me alone” and wave him off. It worked but I think we all need to make cruise line aware of this practice especially since they announce before docking that chairs and umbrellas are free

 

 

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Not all chairs and umbrellas are free, and it has been that way for a while. The chairs and umbrellas in the front rows are fee-based, run by locals. But the other chairs and umbrellas are free.

 

Actually now it is more clear cut to passengers which are free - if you know how it works. Chairs with green umbrellas are free. In fact, when we were there last week, the security guard told everyone coming through the Dufry store that the chairs with green umbrellas are free. We've been several times before so we already knew that, but it was good info for new visitors.

 

If you look at the pic you can tell the difference. If you want free, go to green.

IMG_3075.JPG

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Not all chairs and umbrellas are free, and it has been that way for a while. The chairs and umbrellas in the front rows are fee-based, run by locals. But the other chairs and umbrellas are free.

 

 

 

Actually now it is more clear cut to passengers which are free - if you know how it works. Chairs with green umbrellas are free. In fact, when we were there last week, the security guard told everyone coming through the Dufry store that the chairs with green umbrellas are free. We've been several times before so we already knew that, but it was good info for new visitors.

 

 

 

If you look at the pic you can tell the difference. If you want free, go to green.

 

IMG_3075.JPG

 

 

Good info.No one told us that. Thank you!!

 

 

 

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This is GREAT information idahospud!! (hope you find that truck ,LOL).

 

Thanks for passing it along. Hopefully the that information gets put out by cruise ships on their daily events sheets for the port.

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I find it disgusting that people can prop down their own umbrellas and chairs in the front row and then charge for them. Pretty shady.

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I find it disgusting that people can prop down their own umbrellas and chairs in the front row and then charge for them. Pretty shady.

 

And openly threatening paying guests. :o

 

 

I wrote my letters and actually got a letter back from the office of Orlando Ashford. I don't put much stock in it but maybe someone along the food chain will care.

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Oh my gosh like sardines....:rolleyes:

 

Yes and considering it has been reported that THE SAME guys who set up the chairs for the cruise center SELL the chairs set up closest to the water for their own personal profit, it looks like they make the FREE chairs as unappealing as possible by packing them together so close.

 

I guess eventually everyone will just end up at the Margaritaville pool, Jack's Shack, or staying on the ship if the locals make the beach so inhospitable. Between the scamming locals and Mother Nature's hurricanes and then her seaweed fouling the water, Grand Turk may not be a very pleasant stop anymore. That's a shame.

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Did a little research. From what I can tell, beach access is free by law, but there is nothing restricting a person from renting the chair itself as long as they own it, and its not allowed to 'claim' a spot on a public beach, nor leave them out all the time. So my guess is they set up their stuff first, leaving the cruise ones packed into the rest of the space. Since the cruise lines are not making any money on the chairs, they don't care, they would rather you go to the paid venues in the port area where they get a cut anyway, so no incentive to change the current system.

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Perhaps if cruisers stop getting off the ship at this port and Carnival starts losing money here maybe they will stop allowing this practice.

 

We have cruised to GT many times and NEVER saw this until after the hurricane in 2017. It used to be our favorite beach day. Not anymore . We were there last Thanksgiving and it looks 10x worse now.

 

I wonder if Jimmy Buffett is aware of potential impact to his Margaritaville.??

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On 10/1/2018 at 10:32 AM, fatcat04 said:

I guess eventually everyone will just end up at the Margaritaville pool, Jack's Shack, or staying on the ship if the locals make the beach so inhospitable. Between the scamming locals and Mother Nature's hurricanes and then her seaweed fouling the water, Grand Turk may not be a very pleasant stop anymore. That's a shame.

 

I was there this past week and, while there was a little bit of seaweed at the shoreline, it wasn't a problem at all and didn't smell.   The water out in the deeper part -- where the good snorkeling is -- was very clear, visibility underwater at least 50 feet.  

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On 10/19/2018 at 12:51 AM, Pellaz said:

 

I was there this past week and, while there was a little bit of seaweed at the shoreline, it wasn't a problem at all and didn't smell.   The water out in the deeper part -- where the good snorkeling is -- was very clear, visibility underwater at least 50 feet.  

Good to know. I have seen some recent pics and it looks fairly clear so maybe the seaweed issues have cleared up naturally. I wonder if the seaweed growth is a cyclical/seasanal thing? We will be there in a couple weeks and I will report back on all I see.

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This place has really gone downhill the past few years. Back then, all the chairs were free, and the worst thing you dealt with is locals approaching you selling items (and even then they were not pushy). Now it's just a joke. The thing these local idiots don't understand is everytime they harass and shakedown visitors, they don't want to come back to your island, and pretty soon the tourism money and the sole source of income for many of these islands is gone. 

 

I just bypass everything and go to Jack's. I'll gladly pay $10 for a chair/umbrealla to be out of the way of 99% of the other cruisers that don't go beyond Jimmy's land.

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On 2/4/2019 at 3:00 PM, ElCrappyTan said:

This place has really gone downhill the past few years. Back then, all the chairs were free, and the worst thing you dealt with is locals approaching you selling items (and even then they were not pushy). Now it's just a joke. The thing these local idiots don't understand is everytime they harass and shakedown visitors, they don't want to come back to your island, and pretty soon the tourism money and the sole source of income for many of these islands is gone. 

 

I just bypass everything and go to Jack's. I'll gladly pay $10 for a chair/umbrealla to be out of the way of 99% of the other cruisers that don't go beyond Jimmy's land.

Yup, that's our take too. We were just there 2 weeks ago and wow, what a change for the worse from a few years back.

I doubt the locals care. If they can get a few bucks from the gullible, it's worth it to them in the short term and Carnival obviously doesn't care or else they would have pressured the government to license and police the vendors.

We didn't get harassed thankfully but my dh and ds ran inference for us ladies and they are big men. Here is a post about what we saw.

 

We will be headed to Jack's next winter assuming we even bother getting off the ship.

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