Kickbacks & commissions

Kickbacks, Italy, Italy (Photo by Peter Linke)

Not all local advice is honest advice

When your friendly escort on a guided bus tour recommends the “best shop” for buying local crafts or souvenirs, nine times out of ten she’s getting a healthy kickback from that store and the prices are heavily inflated. 

(In defense of tour guides, this is one of the only methods for them to eke out a living, as they are notoriously underpaid—in part because companies unofficially expect them to take advantage of this option as an unlisted perk.) 

Do your shopping on your own time, and get your recommendations from a guidebook or the hotel desk.

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