How tourists are deceived in Abkhazia: 5 main tricks

How tourists are deceived in Abkhazia: 5 main tricks

Tourists who come to rest in Abkhazia are ready to forgive her jambs with infrastructure and service, but otherwise they want to worry only about how not to oversleep the gentle morning sun, where to go on an excursion after the beach and what to prefer for dinner – “Apsny” or “Anakopia”. In order not to fall into the clutches of scammers, prudent “Subtleties” recommend that you study standard divorce schemes in advance and relax fully armed.

1. Penalties

A tourist takes a picture of a building he likes, and suddenly a man in an incomprehensible form approaches him and demands to pay a fine of 50–100 RUB. The main thing here is not to get confused and confidently refuse – there will certainly not be a continuation. But the tricksters who extort parking fees (it is free almost everywhere) can be more persistent and even turn to threats. The algorithm is similar: we ignore and leave, and in extreme cases we turn to real law enforcement officers. Abkhazian traffic rules are different from Russian ones, and traffic cops take advantage of this. Sometimes they stop, even if there was no violation, and offer to “negotiate on the spot.” It is necessary to insist on drawing up a protocol: there is a high probability that they will be released in peace.

According to the stories of tourists, on the land Russian-Abkhazian border, sometimes they also ask for something to pay: for example, a fine for lack of registration or unknown insurance. It is enough to ask to see a clause in the law obliging to pay: the border guards will most likely pretend that they generously forgive an uninformed guest.

2. Money fraud

It is better to change the currency in banks: in private exchangers, the exchange rate is unfavorable, and a fake banknote can be fobbed off. In the markets, carefully count the change so that you don’t inadvertently “forget” to give out a couple of banknotes.

With money, in general, you should be careful even at the stage of booking accommodation, choosing only proven resources. Recently, you can run into fake sites online that bribe fake reviews and photos of apartments, rooms in hotels and boarding houses, and then charge an advance payment for air.

In the markets, prices are not indicated everywhere, and what is sold cheaply to “their own people” is often offered to tourists at exorbitant prices.

3. Tours

It is better to immediately clarify the final cost. During the trip, the guide will offer to see sights that are not included in the main program. If some members of the group agree and get off at additional stops, while others stubbornly remain in the cabin, everyone will eventually receive an invoice with a surcharge. Also, guides sometimes try to raise the price if tourists linger at the sights, assuring that parking for more than 10 minutes for buses is paid (actually not).

For those who plan to see everything to the maximum, it is better to take an extended tour initially, which will cost much less than if the route is adjusted in the process. “Persuading” the driver to take a dangerous but shortest road, dine in a “posh” place, look at the “best” apiary or winery – all these are tricks that suck money out of tourists.

A man is on duty at the castle of Prince Oldenburg, charging 150 RUB for entry. But if you ask for a check, his ardor will decrease, because access to the castle is free.

4. Fees

At the entrance to the national park with the famous Lake Ritsa, you have to pay 350 RUB per person – this is the official environmental fee. But in the same place in the parking lot they will demand another 150 RUB – but this is already illegal, you can safely refuse. And no one has the right to take money for the passage to the observation deck, even if they ask for “only” 20–30 RUB. This applies not only to Lake Ritsa: for example, a person is on duty at the castle of Prince Oldenburg, charging 150 RUB for entry. But if you ask for a check, his ardor will decrease, because access to the castle is free. If a cute tiger cub, lemur or monkey is held out in the street, it’s wiser not to take it, otherwise they will try to force you to pay even without a photo.

5. Culinary Tricks

In the top of popular edible souvenirs is honey from Abkhaz apiaries, natural and delicious. Beekeeping has been practiced here for a long time, they practice beekeeping: bees live on trees, not in beehives, and beekeepers extract amber sweetness directly from nests. And then they surprise tourists with outlandish varieties like eucalyptus, chestnut, buckwheat or blackberry. It is possible that all the pots will contain the same honey, just with different additives (fortunately, also natural), but the price will differ markedly.

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