Yes, right at the end of the pier in fact. But be very careful. We bought some jewelry last time we were there (in October) Tanzanite and opal. turned out to be fake. Luckily is wasn't a tremendous amount of money, but still not good. I wouldn't buy any jewerly in the smalelr shops in Cozumel. And even in the "cruise line" approved chains, I would be very cautious.
================================================== ========== Carnival Cruise Lines:
Fantasy 90, Celebration 95, Victory 05, Conquest 05, Spirit 6/06, Freedom 6/08, Holiday 7/08, Victory 6/09, Valor 9/09, Dream 6/10, Splendor 8/10,Conquest 8/11,Magic 11/11,Triumph 4/12,Spirit 7/12,Freedom 11/12, Triumph 2/13 - The fire cruise
NCL Dream October 2006, RCCL Mariner OTS June 2007
I first ran into the "cruise line approved jewelry shops" on my last cruise...I guess it was the first time I had attended one of those port lectures.
Anyone know how much those shops pay the cruise line to be put on the recommended list?
Like Jim, I am leary about buying high ticket items in cruise ports, but I assume the cruise line accepts some responsibility if the item you buy in one of their recommended stores fails an appraisal test back in the States?
That would be nice if the cruise line did accept some reponsibility, but that's just not the case. Any dispute over a purchase is between you, the vendor and your credit card company. The cruise line is held blameless in these disputes.
At least that has been my experience.
How much the shops pay and who gets it is one of those "dirty little secrets" of the cruise industry.
Woman always go a little "crazy" on the ships in thinking that they are going to find unheard of bargains on gems and gold when in port. The cruise directors put on elaborate presentations and giveaways. Last month on Pride they even went as far as to throw a diamond bracelet into the audience during the presentation. Diamonds Int'l and others pay big bucks to have the cruise ships tout their name. I have found in Cozumel that the best deals aren't on the pier or the marketplace area near the pier. We venture into downtown and barter a little bit. I usually stick to t-shirts, baseball hats, a hammock chair (I love that thing!!!!) for $20. I bought my daughters some reasonable silver rings and bracelets in the downtown area. I always make sure it is stamped .925 to insure it's s.s. People have their own opinions and will do as they please. My feelings are that ports of call see "rich" Americans getting off of huge ships and they see dollar signs in their eyes. I have yet to hear of anyone getting a fantastic price on a piece of jewelry in a port. God Bless them if they have. I've never been brave enough to attempt it. If you have a problem with a piece, it's not as easy as going to your local jeweler and talking it out. I have heard from many that's where it gets sticky with buying in port. In getting your money back. Only my opinion. Have fun shopping!
I believe that the shops that RCL recommends would not be on the list for long if they were not reputable or selling items that were not as listed in the sales contract. I have found Diamonds International (In most ports) to stand behind their products and have made good on a free repair after 1 year and even paid shipping both ways to their location in NY. It pays to do your homework prior to leaving home if you have a particular item in mind knowing the quality and cost help with negotiations.
I do research at home before the cruise if I'm looking for a particular item. That way I know at what point I will walk or if they are offering me a good deal. Also, the jewelery on board - ask if they have anything on final clearance - I just bought an Amtheyst and diamond necklace on last cruise for $60 - marked down from over $200.
The recomended shops pay a kickback to the sales guy to pitch thier store..we found a swartzski (sp) necklace on board the ship for $40 less than the store in grand cayman where the ship's "shopping advisor" swore had the best prices anywhere for those items...we told him after we bought the one from the ship..he played it off as well it must be last years stock and the ship is trying to clearance it out...wrong!!! (the guy even looked like a greasy watch salesman...he wore multiple watches)...we did win a diamond (very little diamond) necklace in a drawing for attending his talk though, so can't complain.
Back on subject tourist stuff is the most expensive in Cozumel, followed by cancun, then playa del carmen.
You can get a deal on silver, my wife says the Tasco area produces quality silver cheap and there were a few store with tasco in the name in playa del carmen..anything you could think of made of siver or silver plated...yes you have top be careful to check the stamp and make sure it isn't silver plated, they sometimes plate heavy metal to get the feel of solid silver pieces. The bigger stores seem more reputable than the flea market guys.
I got a deal by taking an hour to look and bargain, in a big store a good walk from the ferry pier. my wife went outside and had a cold drink and watched the people go by while did the dance with the salesman...cash is preferred to credit cards because they can hide it from the government and dont have to pay transaction fees...If you are willing to negotiate you can get some great prices on t-shirts and tourist stuff, silver, Vanilla and Kalalua (sp?) and tequila are good bargains.