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Shopping! Recommendations for the best places to shop.

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old August 10th, 2004, 03:29 PM
tll
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Default Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

I went to a talk expecting to hear something about the port, such as excursions and sight seeing, and I got a full-blown talk about shopping. I like to shop, and would have done fine on my own. They really push selected merchants, and warn you that if you donít shop at the selected merchants you will probably be ripped-off. The jewelry store they pushed the most was Diamondís International, I shopped at several stores for a diamond ring, I found one at a store that was not on the recommended list and then went to Diamondís International to compare, Diamondís International could not touch the deal that I got at the other store. As soon as I got home, I took my ring to a jeweler and asked them to verify the appraisal of my ring, the ring was exactly what I was told it was and I got a great deal. My advise to anyone wishing to purchase jewelry from anyone not on the recommended merchantís list would be to use your credit card, verify the quality of your purchase when you get home, and if the item doesnít stand up to the saleís pitch, contact the merchant. If the merchant will not stand behind the item, dispute the charges on your credit card. All it would take is the paperwork from the merchant and an appraisal from an independent jewelry to prove your case.
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Old August 10th, 2004, 05:01 PM
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Default Re: Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

I'd also like to add to your post.....Shop at home before you go, just to get an idea of prices and quality, something to compare to, be a smart shopper.

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Old August 11th, 2004, 05:17 PM
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Default St Thomas- Maarten T-Shirts

Each cruise I end up with a suitcase full of T-shirts. I have found over the years that sometimes there are certain shops that offer the higher quality T-shirts at the cheaper prices if you buy 3 or more at a time. Did anyone notice if this was true for St Thomas and Maarten, and if so what was the name of the place. Any help is appreciated.
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Old August 11th, 2004, 05:19 PM
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Default St Thomas- Maarten T-Shirts

Each cruise I end up with a suitcase full of T-shirts. I have found over the years that sometimes there are certain shops that offer the higher quality T-shirts at the cheaper prices if you buy 3 or more at a time. Did anyone notice if this was true for St Thomas and Maarten, and if so what was the name of the place. Any help is appreciated.
Thanks
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Old August 15th, 2004, 06:19 PM
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Default Re: Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

I definately agree I bought a few pieces from Diamonds International and when I got home I took them to a local jeweler only to find out they were worth what I paid for them. I thought I was getting a great deal, but not exactly. This time around I'm going to check all the stores instead of just the ones the ship recommends. Definately be a smart shopper, you can get taken just like you could at home.

Rachel
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Old August 17th, 2004, 03:48 PM
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Default Re: Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

i also agree with you. With our previous cruises, i have found D.I. to be out of our price range, where other shops you can bargain with them. I have found good deals in St Maarten & they even gave us credit until we got home & didnt put our credit card thru until 2 weeks after our cruise. would d.i. do that, i dont think so.
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Old August 31st, 2004, 10:31 AM
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Default Re: Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

They have a seperate shop talk and port excursions talk. Those stores pay the cruiselines to be recommended and have deals with them if you are unhappy you have 30 days for a refund. Other stores may have that too that arent on the list. You just have to use your best judgement when shopping at stores not on the list. Also always good to check back home on prices too.
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Old September 7th, 2004, 03:16 PM
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Default Re: Cruise Ship's Push for Selected Merchants

I always shop at Diamond's Intl. Got an excellent buy on my 6.5 ct. tanzanite ring surrounded by 1 ct. of diamonds. My friend bought a 34 ct. unset tanzanite rock at D.I. She said "it's a better investment than the stock market."

Happy SHopping!

Carol
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Old February 7th, 2007, 02:41 PM
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I know that this is much later than the original post date of this topic but I had to reply to it. DI is not a good place to shop in my opinion. I, also, have bought things at small jewelry stores in St. Thomas and have always got very good deals. I've had the diamonds appraised when I got home and found they appraised much higher than the purchase price. I was also told that I could get my money back if the piece didn't appraise to my satisfaction. Not so with Diamonds Internationl. My husband spent a very large sum of money on 2 rings at Tanzanite Internation in Costa Maya. When we got home we found that the band of his ring was cracked and the stone was loose. Mine was much worse. The jeweler told us that the stone (Alexandrite) had small chips all around the girdle. Now, we're trying to deal with TI. No money back. Only repair, replace or store credit. Would anyone trust them to replace the stone with another after they allowed 2 rings to leave their store that were defective? We're sick.
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Old February 21st, 2007, 06:29 PM
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Bonmoyer, I'm so sorry you had that experience with DI. I would be sick too!

I was fortunate to have had a good experience with Tanzanite International (same company as DI) two years ago. With great trepidation, but a lot of excitement, I bought an emerald and diamond ring in Cozumel. When I returned, I immediately had it appraised at a reputable appraisal service. The appraisal confirmed the quality of the gems and the appraisal price was just under four times what I had paid.

I guess, like anything else, some experiences are good and some are not.

Bonnie
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Old February 22nd, 2007, 08:18 PM
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waiting2retire, Thanks so much for your feedback. Im still working with DI but have a terrible time getting them to call me back. I still haven't been able to ship them back to them because they won't send me the shipping instructions. I have a feeling they are holding off until the time runs out. I guess I'll be taking a store credit so I'll have a lot of bucks to spend when I get on my next cruise. I'm sure not going to shop online. I believe the store in Costa Maya, where I bought the rings, just did very poor work in setting and sizing rings.
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