I just spent two weeks in Sunny Beach Bulgaria and was shocked at the appalling way Britt’s were treated.
Its not like when you go to normal holiday places like Spain / Greece when you go to the places 9 times out of 10 you are looked after for the money that you have to pay them, Where as in Bulgaria the attitude is just give me the money you’re here now and there’s nothing you can do about it. They will do everything and anything to get any cash from you without that smile and friendly face, this totally robbed us of the holiday feeling and environment instead you feel unsafe and are constantly looking over your shoulder.
So I thought id write my experience down as a warning for others , as it seemed so many British people we spoke to had encountered the same and many on the coach back to the airport were complaining about how it was here and all agreed none would ever go back.
The Alcohol is very different to how it is here in England or in most other places in fact, We were told by various people that the alcohol used is Methanol which is basically the alcohol used in anti-Bacterial soap like the soap your asked to use when entering a ward at a hospital.
Some of the people we spoke to had advised they had adverse reactions to the alcohol some had bad spouts of being sick without a hangover even though they were hardly ever sick, others complained of rashes on their arms. I too had a funny reaction one minute id be fine the next my jaw was going back and forth and eyes kept closing I found it extremely hard to keep my self-awake so I decided to to go get something to eat and then get a taxi home, for some reason I couldn’t find or felt I didn’t have time to find a friend before leaving the club in fear of falling asleep, all this happened so quickly it I sober one minute and like this the next.
You have to be extremely careful when getting into cabs and agree a price beforehand even then they will try and get more, one of my taxi’s which I agreed 14 Lev the only cash I had left took me to the wrong hotel with a similar name even though I had the Hotel card with the name and address on it.
On my second night and my first night of Proper drinking on their Alcohol which as I explained above is totally different to ours and affects you differently, I was drunk but also in a trance like state and the cab driver mugged me after stopping in a quiet road not far from my hotel, luckily he only got my wallet with my driving licence and a phone which was on its way out.
I went to the police station to report it but spent most of the day there waiting I got the impression you were kept waiting with a slow process so that you gave up and didn’t report a crime to keep statistics low, which there I spoke to a elderly couple who thought they had been drugged at the restaurant they were in as they said they spent a lot of money on meals there, and that she had completely passed out and he was totally incapacitated and when they came around her bag and his wallet were gone, when he cancelled his card he was told they had done it just in time as someone had just created a pay pal account connected to his card, they also said they had spent the whole day before in the police station. So its not just the young partying guys/ girls who need to be careful.
Whilst we are on this subject we also heard about a guy who was working out there and had his phone stolen on the first day of arrival , Apparently the police took and kept his passport for 5 weeks and still had it even though he was due to fly home the next week. We never heard if he got this back or not. But this was enough for me to think I’ve been fairly lucky I’ve not been hurt , I left and didn’t bother reporting it, you don’t want to spend 3 days in a police station nor did I want to risk being asked for my Passport ( which they advise you need to prove who you are)
You have to pay to use the toilet in almost every single bar, I found 2 that did not charge and another which was free to paying customers which is fair enough to me, but to be buying drinks in pubs/ clubs and then have to pay to use the toilet there as a paying customer is Disgraceful. Most charge from 50 cense to 1 Lev which is roughly 25p to 50P this quickly adds up once you brake that seal especially if your out drinking every night for two weeks.
Just to give you an idea of how serious they are about us the paying customers having to pay for the toilet, my friend was making his way to the toilet and we both see a guy in front pay twice for some reason he went through the turn styles and the light was still green meaning someone else could go through for free , the guy manning the Toilets see this and jumped out of his seat to turn the turnstile before my friend had reached them just so he had to pay too.
We were told that you must use toilets as Security will demand money from you in some cases people had all there money taken and or were beaten up I never see any one get beaten up but I see many many people with black eyes and cuts even though we never heard of or see any fights
Also the reps warned us and that if were approached we should mention the police as they aren’t supposed to ask for money and normally would leave you alone.
The Sunny Beach Strip isn’t cheap either they Know the prices we pay here in the UK and match / add to it. Some beers are a little cheaper but not much. Here’s a couple of examples:
Burger King they sold dips for 89 cense this is roughly 35 – 40P. Whereas you know normally we get them free here or at worst we have to pay 10p – I actually mentioned this to the staff there who got pretty defensive saying it was more expensive in London which I disagreed with in a nice Manor as I knew it wasn’t them directly who made the prices however this didn’t stop them from advising me they didn’t like the British there. In fact I heard this a few times from various people in Bulgaria, a few nice Bulgarians told us to be careful as a lot of Bulgarian’s don’t like the British and that we should definitely stay away from the club and bars on Cocoa Beach at night, safe to say we didn’t go there even though it was across the road from our Hotel. But if I’m honest I do not think this is just a British problem it looked as if a lot of Dutch and German people were treated just as bad.
Mc Donald’s a Double cheese burger marked as 5.09Levs which is roughly 2.50Gbp more expensive than here, but they don’t just take 5.09Levs they round it up to 6Lev making it 3 Gbp.
But if this isn’t enough to stop you going here’s a few extra tips as to not get caught out by them:
Be careful when using the Buses pick pockets are everywhere always assume there’s at least three on each bus we see a guy and a child with the child pickpocketing whilst the guy would be at the doors ready to run he got off and then on again at all stops.
A Fellow Brit at our hotel was on a bus behind us and said they see a pick pocket take a guys wallet from his back pocket only to be caught by the guys wife, who grabbed and punched the pick pocket to the face a few times, luckily they got there wallet back
Be Careful with cabs make sure you agree a price before hand, Some cabs will try their luck and want you to pay 5 levs per person we had this once and there was 6 of us when the cab should only cost 10Lev, when we walked away they shouted out only poor people get the bus. But bearing in mind the bus only costs 1.3 lev which is 70p it didn’t deter us.
When Buying Ice cream don’t pick 3 flavours at a time as they heap it up and then they weigh it, mine came in at 20 lev which is 10.00GBP. Ask for one flavour and tell him how much you want and ask him to weigh it before adding another flavour
The following bits are what we were warned about by our reps luckily as we were able to avoid them
Don’t but tickets from of the street as they are last years – we were approached by a guy near the main strip near the stools before Tony’s pub asking if we wanted tickets for a club which was worth 100.00 Lev and that he would do us the best deal at 15 Lev.
Don’t try any fruit offered to you as if you do try it you basically buy their full bucket of the fruit at whatever cost they ask – we were asked by a few different people
Don’t go in to Sex / lady places we were advised that its free to get in but will cost you a few hundred lev Or a big beating to get out.
Also be careful of buying anything out there if you close to the maximum weight on your luggage they are extremely strict we had to throw bits away to get it down , luckily I managed to put my hand luggage half off the scales.
I cant stress enough at how bad the place was and just how much it all adds up and ruins the holiday, we were under the impression that it was a cheap place to go and I hope the above is enough of a deterrent as things will never change if people still visit the place I think everyone should avoid it until they change their attitude towards us.
I may sound like I’m exaggerating but I’m 100% truthful about this and I hope others who have experienced this will also tell there experiences
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