When Shopping In A Port Of Call, Document Your Purchases

If you find you’re on a cruise to, say, the Caribbean, and you decide to buy something expensive—like, say, an emerald ring—then be sure to pay with a credit card, take photos of the item and the person who sold it to you, and get a receipt. It may sound like overkill, but if the “emeralds” in the ring fall out and it turns your finger black once you’re back on the boat and have left Antigua, chances are it’s not a cursed pirate ring but a fake, and you’ll be glad you have some documentation when you start trying to make things right.

Odds are, your cruise ship will help you repair or replace the item, but even then you should document the transfer of your ring to their staff with more photos and a written receipt, says Al Anolik, a travel attorney and author.

A couple in California had this problem with their ring, and then had the bad luck to never receive a repair or refund from the cruise ship once they got home. Luckily for them, a local ABC affiliate got involved and they managed to get a refund, but if your complaint doesn’t make the newsworthy-cut for your local news’ consumer segment, you’ll be glad you’ve got lots of visual proof to back up your claim.

“Consumer Rights When Shopping Overseas” [abc7news.com]


Edit Your Comment

  1. if the cruise ship fixes her ring that she bought in antigua, can they cure the syphillis i caught in bangkok?

  2. @Petrarch1603: No, but just don’t think about it and maybe it will go away.

  3. gniterobot says:

    Backing up your clam is always a good idea….mmmm clams

  4. @gniterobot: Okay, fine, I’ll spell it correctly… just this once…

  5. BigNutty says:

    Am I missing something? Why would a cruise ship be responsible for your stupid purchase. Why would you spend any considerable amount of money on something you know nothing about in a country you are about to leave?

    My parents traveled all over the world and bought many items to bring back but they would never embarrass themselves by trying to blame the cruise ship.

    This is another example of what’s wrong with people today, not being responsible for their own behavior and trying to put the blame on someone else. I don’t care what the law says.

  6. Zombietime says:

    Bignutty, it’s possible that this ring or whatever was purchased ON the cruiseship itself. They have jewelry stores, art galleries, etc… onboard. Then again, if it was purchased in some dirty shop in the Bahamas then you deserve your finger turning black.

  7. alice_bunnie says:


    Often cruise lines have relationships with stores in the ports of call and they’ll have guide books or “suggested shopping” tours to specific shops. If you buy from these specific shops they actually offer guarantees from these shops. At least Royal Caribbean does.

  8. mikesfree says:

    Wow a picture from the original poseiden movie. SWEET!

  9. JustAGuy2 says:


    If they had just wandered into a store, then yes. In this case, the ship had recommended the store, and the ship guaranteed refunds or repairs if anything went wrong (in exchange, I’m sure, for a nice commission from the store). So the ship is on the hook.

  10. MeOhMy says:


    Am I missing something?

    Yes. Royal Caribbean offers a 30-day guarantee on items bought from approved shops. Although I’m starting to think they like to weasel out of honoring it.

  11. Starfury says:

    I went on a cruise last week and the ship does sell jewelry on board. If you bought it there then I would expect the ship company to back up the product. If you bought it on shore at a shop then the cruise line shouldn’t have anything to do with any problems you have.

  12. jodles says:

    your best bet is to buy something from one of those chains that is on every island that every cruise ship recommends. there are stores that they have recommended one year and then aren’t there when we go back. we stick to the stores that have been in business for a long time and that we see are pretty busy inside. one of the chains actually has a manhattan location which is awesome (live in the nyc area), but i can’t remember which one it is.