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first time to jamaica

ontario canada
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first time to jamaica

this is our first trip to jamaica...and by the sounds of it not our last after reading alot of positive reviews. We are going to royal decameron montego bay Nov 19th. Anyone else going around that time? Also...we've heard the locals are real pushy..anyone have a bad experince with this? Or are they harmless?

Cuenca, Spain
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1. Re: first time to jamaica

Hello jamaicaBound2,

You have chosen and excellent hotel that is lively and a ten minute walk to the local night clubs.

Please stay in contact with this forum and try to read many of the threads that will help you to understand the citizens of Jamaica.

The people selling their crafts and gift wares may seem pushy to some people, but if you just politely and firmly state "no", then they will leave you alone.

Always treat everyone with respect and you will get it back tenfold. Remember that this island paradise was hit by the worst hurricane it its history. Only one year ago. Then they had a drought whose effects are still being felt.

So everyone is trying to sell something to be able to put food on the table for their families.

If you can understand this then you will comprehend that the sellers are not pushy. They are just hungry.

Have fun!

Cuenca, Spain
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for Jamaica
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2. Re: first time to jamaica

Here are some photographs for you to enjoy.

http://www.montegobeachresort.com/

community.webshots.com/album/277672296NvPTMf

http://community.webshots.com/user/moodiddy

ontario canada
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3. Re: first time to jamaica

thanks Johnny..appreciate the advice

SF Bay Area
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4. Re: first time to jamaica

I'll be there on 11/25, first time as well. Staying at the Coyaba Beach Resort, anyone know its proximity to nightlife attractions?

Canada
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5. Re: first time to jamaica

I stayed at Decameron twice this summer. You'll love it! And I went out quite frequently in the streets. From my experiences, they will ALWAYS try to talk to you or sell you something, but if you're firm with them and let them know that you're not interested, they should leave you be. It all depends on your character. Never show weakness. That's what I've learned from my experiences in third world countries. Nevertheless, still be polite. It can't hurt. You might even make some friends, as I did.

Hope this helps.

ontario canada
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6. Re: first time to jamaica

thanks for all the input!

Jackson, Michigan
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7. Re: first time to jamaica

jamaicaBound2,

Yes some vendors can be pushy and down right rude but most are only trying to feed their family as Johnny said. Remember Jamaica is an open market so all prices are negotiable from cabs to street vendors. Don't get into a cab until you establish the cost of the fare first. Generally in most purchase situations the price they state first is far too high so you need to "haggle" it down to get the fair market price. The Hip Strip is well patrolled by police so if you experience any threats report them to the police. This would be a rare occurence however it does still occur occasionally.

Here are some good pointers

If you are not interested in the product, then don't look just to be nice, just say no politely and firmly.

Don't say we'll check you out later to a vendor if you're really not interested as they will look for you.

Use the same common sense as you would in Toronto, Montreal, New York, or Detroit.

Avoid being the "dazed & confused" visitor. If you appear to look lost you look like an easy target to hustlers. I find that keeping on the move at a nice pace leads to less unideal situations.

Learn the going prices for beer, food, etc... so that you know what you're being charged. Also memorize the going exchange rate.

Don't exchange money on the street even though there are many trying to do it. There are plenty of banks, cambios, and ATMs that will give you a good rate and you don't have to be worried about getting short changed.

Remember that all tours, activities, and excursions sold at the hotel or by whatever vacation company you booked through can be purchased for much cheaper by an independent guide on the street. I feel this is also better for the local economy too because the hardworking Jamaican gets the cash and the hotel/tour company doesn't take out their large "finder's fee".

Write down some of the taxis, guides, and other activities that are listed on the honest contacts thread in the Jamaica forum. It helps to have honest reliable people to contact down there.

Use the same taxi/guide for the whole week. It will cost less in the long run and you will get to know a local.

Hope you have fun,

Jamerican28

CAN
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8. Re: first time to jamaica

Jamerican - what a wonderful post! Thank you. ONE LOVE.

Jackson, Michigan
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9. Re: first time to jamaica

withrespect,

Thanks so when are you heading back down?

Cuenca, Spain
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for Jamaica
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10. Re: first time to jamaica

Hello sfm1,

Your travel dates coincide with the Thanksgiving vacations when a huge amount of tourists from the USA will be enjoying there holidays down in JAM.

In other words, the town of MoBay will be full and there will be a lot of activity along the Hip Strip. Both day and night.

Here is a simple map showing exactly what you want to know. Hotel is an easy 10 minute taxi ride from the Hip Strip. The airport is inbetween the HS and your hotel.

Coyaba. Montego Beach (Royal DeCamerun). El Greco. Hip Strip. Sunset Beach.

http://www.montegobayonestop.com/main.htm

Open this link. Click onto MAPS on the left. Then click again onto MONTEGO BAY on the left of the page.

Here are some pictures for your viewing pleasure.

http://www.coyabajamaica.com/general.html

http://www.changes.com/resorts/coyaba/

Have fun!