Morocco Winter Jan or Feb

Travel Forums Africa and The Middle East Morocco Winter Jan or Feb

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11. Posted by Bennytheball (Budding Member 74 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

A brief observation on guides......as far as I'm aware it's not possible for a street hustler to simply buy a licence, from anecdotal sources received over many Moroccan revisits I discovered that they have to pass various examinations of competence, including the all-important language skills to gain their coveted guide's badge which takes the form of a laminated plastic identification tag with photograph embedded ,and dangling from around his or her neck, they are also required to have historical knowledge, unlike the false guide who will often just invent any knowledge as they go along filling in any awkward gaps with apocryphal information in the hope that this will be what the happy tourist wants to hear.

Official guides are available to hire at the many tourist offices throughout Morocco, they can also be available at hotel reception desks, but this will involve the hotel taking a commission on the guide's rate which is approximately 250 dirhams half day and 400 dirhams full day, guides will also expect to be fed at the tourist's expense. Many first-time tourists feel more comfortable being escorted by a proper guide, and another advantage of this strategy is his or her ability to chase off any annoying approaches by false guides, the official guide will have a mobile phone to dial up the tourist police, whose arrival would be a fearsome prospect for the street hustler, who will always disappear "like a rat down a drain pipe!"

A final note about the dreaded carpet and herbalist shops......all guides, official and false will have contractual arrangements with these businesses, from where they will extract commission on anything the tourist buys, which will be surreptitiously added to the bill on any purchases made. You will not be aware of this potentially expensive impediment in the haggling process because the guide will only return to the shop to collect his or her commission long after the tourist has departed. To avoid this unnecessary expense always refuse to enter a shop where something desirable displayed outside in the street has caught your eye, instead make a note of the location by taking a photograph, then return to the shop later after the guide has been dismissed at the end of the tour and make your own deal with the proprietor.

12. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 2247 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Bennytheball

A final note about the dreaded carpet and herbalist shops......all guides, official and false will have contractual arrangements with these businesses, from where they will extract commission on anything the tourist buys, which will be surreptitiously added to the bill on any purchases made. You will not be aware of this potentially expensive impediment in the haggling process because the guide will only return to the shop to collect his or her commission long after the tourist has departed. To avoid this unnecessary expense always refuse to enter a shop where something desirable displayed outside in the street has caught your eye, instead make a note of the location by taking a photograph, then return to the shop later after the guide has been dismissed at the end of the tour and make your own deal with the proprietor.

So you'll diddle them out of commission but your conscience bothers you over whether you used an "official" guide. :)

...Speaking as the owner of a carpet shop I could take offence at the above.

13. Posted by Bennytheball (Budding Member 74 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

You appear to be the moderator AndyF....so if my informative post to help Morocco newcomers causes offence I expect you will have the authority to flag it up for deletion?

[ Edit: Edited on 16-Jul-2019, at 10:27 by Bennytheball ]

14. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 2247 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Bennytheball

You appear to be the moderator AndyF....so if my informative post to help Morocco newcomers causes offence I expect you will have the authority to flag it up for deletion?

Hi Benny

I peppered my post with smileys to hopefully show that my tongue was firmly in my cheek. :)

I'm one of the moderators but we are volunteer help and participate as ordinary members here too.

Speaking for all carpet shop owners, we forgive you. ;)

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