How it works:
- Opening: you are usually brought to a gem shop as a result of the tuk-tuk scam.
- Set-up: the shop owner/tout will claim that as gems are abundant, you can get them for wholesale prices. Further, there is a “government sponsored sale” today! Accomplices posing as tourists in the shop will back up these claims and encourage you to buy. These gems are worthless pieces of glass or made of synthetic materials.
Places to beware:
What to do:
- When buying:
- Shop only at legitimate dealers – check with the Thai Gem and Jewelry Trader Association.
- Have these written down in Thai and English: price, value, clarity and weight.
- Seeking recourse:
- File a report with the tourist police.
- Call your bank to dispute the charges if you used a credit card.
- Contact Thai Gem and Jewelry Trader Association: 02-6301390-7.
- Contact Tourism Authority of Thailand: 02-250-5500.