MY FIRST CRUISE AND THOUGHT TO BE A WELL DESERVED TANZANITE RING PURCHASE THAT I SAVED FOR SINCE KATRINA! I LOST EVERYTHING FROM KATRINA AND DECIDED TO SAVE FOR A DREAM COME TRUE THAT MAY END UP A NIGHTMARE! I PURCHASED A 14K, 2.94 CTW, VIOLET BLUE, EYE CLEAN BEAUTIFUL RING FOR 3,250.00 BY A CLERK NAMED "OSCAR" THE BARGAINING TOOK SOME TIME AND TO GET THE RIGHT SIZE RING TOOK TWO TRIES TO GET IT RIGHT. ONCE BACK TO THE UNITED STATES, I TOOK THE RING TO BE APPRAISED. THE JEWLER READ THE CTW ON THE APPRAISAL AND IMMEDIATELY ASKED ME TO COME BACK TO HIS WORK AREA; HE TOOK THE STONE OUT OF THE RING IN FRONT OF ME AND MEASURED THE STONE, THE CTW WAS 1.71 NEEDLESS TO SAY THAT I JUST ABOUT VOMITED ON THE FLOOR, AND STARTED TO SHAKE DUE TO THE FACT I HAVE SAVED TO MAKE THIS PURCHASE FOR ABOUT A YEAR WHILE LIVING IN MY WONDERFUL GOVERNMENT ISSUED FEMA TRAILER. THE APPRAISER THEN WENT ON TO SAY THAT THE RING VALUE BY APPEARANCE IS ABOUT 1500.00. THE APPRAISAL WILL BE DONE IN ABOUT 5 WORKING DAYS. I HAVE 90 DAYS SAME AS CASH ON THE PURCHASE OF THIS RING. I DO HOPE THAT CARNIVAL BACKS UP THE RECOMMENDATION OF THIS COMPANY AND EXCHANGES THE STONE FOR THE CORRECT SIZE AND COLOR OR ALLOWS THE RING TO BE RETURNED. I WILL LET EVERYONE KNOW WHAT HAPPENS AS THE EVENTS TURN OUT. UNTIL THEN DO NOT SHOP AT THIS STORE OR DEAL WITH OSCAR. HAS ANYONE HAD THIS EXPERIENCE? PLEASE HELP!
Don't feel bad bigbird. You're not the only one that TI took advantage of. We bought 2 Alexandrite rings in Costa Maya at the TI store. When we took them for appraisals we found that my husbands ring had a loose stone and the bad was cracked. With my ring, there are small chips around the girdle of the stone. They offer no money back with the warranty. Only to repair, replace or store credit. This was a #16,000 total purchase. I called Carnival and she also told me there would be no money back offer. This is the store policy. Now, how can I trust a company that allowed 2 defective pieces of jewelry to leave their store. Maybe it's just the workmanship in Costa Maya store but how can we be sure? As far as your problem is concerned, I think you should get a replacement stone. I talked to someone that Carnival put me in touch with that is responsible for the shops that Carnival reommends. She told me that the only way to get your money is if the appraisal is off by 1 grade. Now, to me, a stone that much smaller than it was supposed to be should qualify. Good luck. Please post the outcome of this.
After the agony of negotiation in Tanzanite Internation in Cozumel, I purchased a loose 4kt tanzanite for $2,000. When I returned to the states it appraised for around $2,900. From my memory, I think they originally wanted about $3,500 for it and I worked them down. This was in 2001, so I am not sure how it compares to todays pricing and value.
Overall, it was a miserable buying experience, but I was pleased with the final outcome.
New Orleans - Rebuild/Rebirth
2/23/2006 - Carnival Inspiration
4/24/2004 - Carnival Triumph
3/15/2003 - Royal Car. Freedom of the Seas
2/25/2002 - Carnival Fascination
2/24/2001 - Carnival Imagination
I purchased a $36,000 diamond from Diamonds International (also known as Tanzanite International) that I sent to GIA when I returned from Alaska on Royal Caribbean. Their report was significatly off and not what they told me that characteristics of the diamond were. They refuse to accept return of the diamond!
Oscar is still there and doing well! I just returned from a RC cruise to Cozumel and he tried to sell me a very sub standard ruby pendent necklace. It was very cloudy which is the 1st sign of a low grade ruby. We bargained for that and a bracelet of rubies and diamonds. We started at $3600 and I walked away at $2300. I went to my home town jeweler upon return and bought almost the same bracelet for $250, yes 250 not 2300 hundred dollars. Tanzanite International is a racket and prey upon the tourists who want a deal.
Am going to Barbados, St. Maartin and St. Kitts next Jan. - Want to bring the tanzanite tennis bracelet I bought in Cozumel for a possible exchange or upgrade. I still have the original bill of sale - and was told you can do
this at their stores. Any one have experience with this idea?? Thanks.
Costa Atlantica, Jan. 2002 Caribbean
Dawn Princess, Jan. 2003 Caribbean,
Celebrity Summit - Jan. 2007 Panama Canal - Full Transit
Mariner of the Seas - Jan. 2009 Around the Horn B2B - 30 days
It's difficult to believe some of the things crew members will tell you about shopping at 'cruise approved stores". On our last cruise I thought the "expert" was a carnival hawker. I have never heard so many sleezie statements. He was on the gangplank each morning handling out "discount coupons". I could not believe all the people grabbing for those coupons and heading for the nearest jewelry store. We went into a few to see what was happening and the jewelry was really 'crap" at a very inflated price. Wait until you return home and go to a reputable store where you can go back if things are not as you expected. Trying going back to that port and getting a refund.
Just want to say that bigbird, you are stupid for wasting money on a completely useless rock when you are living in such conditions. You have no right to be wasting that sort of money so I frankly don't feel bad about the price you paid because even spending a penny would have been too much considering your state of affairs.
Secondly, these types of things are easy to avoid. I've been going to Grand Cayman for the past ten years and buying jewelry. The key is to shop around. Impulse buying gets you no where. If you don't know the stone that you are buying, do some research first. Go around to a lot of different stores so you can come back and compare prices and try to pit two companies against each other. And most importantly, DON'T BE AFFRAID TO WALK OUT!!!! If they won't come down then leave. That rock is not that important that they can tell you what you will pay for it, you will tell them how much and if they won't come down, leave. Supply and Demand!
Be smart about your purchases, and I can promise right off the bat that anything you buy on a cruise is going to be overpriced and not the best quality, it's a cruise for goodness sakes. I would suggest going into town, or coming back to a place you had visited to buy at a later date. Waiting to make a big purchase after careful planning and consideration is key.
Biggbird----I would be interested in any followup you care to post. I made a watch purchase while on a a H/A ship. The warranty which the company gave me faded to an almost white sheet of paper before I returned home. I contact H/A and was told the next time that ship was in that port a representative would go by and obtain me a new warranty card. About a month later I got that new card. Now the good part, that watch (a TAG) is still running great. I took it to my jeweler and he said I saved about a $100 plus taxes. So I didn't really get a great deal however I didn't get stung either.
If you plan to buy jewelry or loose stones while on vacation, do some shopping around before your trip so you can have an idea about fair prices and market standards. Buy and learn to use a jewelers loupe and take it with you. As soon as I take out my loupe, whether in a Tanzanite International abroad or in a local store, the salesperson knows I mean business and am not a someone they can try to scam. We were in 7 Western Caribbean ports in Aug 09 and saw very little that was not over priced. We talked one guy down from $500 to $175 on a bracelet. Have a pre-determined budget in mind and STICK TO IT! If you don't really love it, don't buy it. Haggle, leave the store and take a breath and think about any potential purchases BEFORE you buy anything. Happy shopping.
While In Lord and Taylors outside of Boston I spied a cream, brown, goldish pearl cuff bracelet, three stands..WOW..IT was on sale.. and Parrot Pop urged me to buy it. for a bit over $60.00...it was Honora pearls.. In St. Lucia I saw the same bracelet, I had them take it out of t he case.. it was over $300.00..lol.. BUT in St. Lucia ran into DI to get out of the rain and spotted a two tone gold spiral bracelet on sale..okay.. so we haggled and haggled and haggled with the store manager (forget the sales people) .and I did buy it.. the price right and it worked with my other two bracelets (women know what I'm talking about).. I don't know really, but I have since found out that it was made in Italy but 14K gold which is okay with me.. the clasp isn't quite right, but I'll have our local jeweler work on it..lol.. In all seriousness, I've discovered that locally made craft jewelry is very affordable and brings more comments than any other expensive piece Yes, i have even shopped at H. Stern in Manaus..Parrot Pop said if I bought I couldnt eat for a year..lol
I just returned from Cozumel (cruise). Bought loose stone @ above vendor. The stone (almost $2,000) is not worth what I paid. Cust. service would not return my call. Finally, they called me and said I could not return the item. Shame on this store, and sham on the cruise lines who recommend them!
If anyone has any information that would help me get my money back, I would appreciate your posts.