Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Be Careful Buying Silver Jewelry From Mexico

You have to be very careful when buying silver jewelry from Mexico. I have put together this simple guide on how to buy jewelry in Mexico because I have been ripped off before. No one wants to get ripped off and it can be a real bummer when you are on a limited budget. I have seen many fake silver products being sold in Mexico. Yes even counterfeit coins I have seen people selling in hopes of snagging a collector that would love to pay top dollar. With jewelry a trick they like to do is use fake stamps, so that you think its a famous designer or jeweler. I have seen fake stamps of all silver jewelers including “Tiffany and Co.” You really don't want to buy something that obviously is too good to be true. Follow your instincts. I have put together a list of things that I think you should do before purchasing anything from anybody. That way you can be sure the shops you shop at are honest people. Like I said, no one likes to be ripped off. That being said Mexico does have great bargains on REAL silver you just have to know what to look for, and not fall for the same old scams. Here are some good things to remember...

  1. If you can try to visit Taxco, Mexico. This is where most of their legit silver originates from because it is where it is made. They have really nice pieces that are hand made, and super artistic. You will love the selection of this place, because they make it right there at the same place. Silver is everywhere there. This doesn't mean however you can not get scammed. Scammers are everywhere too.
  2. Make sure there are no scratches or scrapes on the silver itself. Good quality silver shouldn't have any imperfections like that. You also have to check if both pairs of earrings match. Sometimes when retailers buy in bulk, they mix up the set with another pair, and you have a bad situation on your hands. Make sure everything matches up and looks nice.
  3. Always take note of the weight of the jewelry. Silver from Mexico usually comes in 2 different ways. Make sure you check for a stamp that says .925 or .950. The .925 silver is obviously used for the lower quality jewelry, but just use that in your price negotiation. Don't be afraid to talk them down. They are used to this in Mexico and it is common practice. When it comes to fine stones they usually appear more on the .950 silver since they make the jewelry go up in value.
  4. Make sure you use your gut feeling when buying from somewhere you aren't familiar with. Nine times out of ten your feeling is correct. A lot of these merchants and retailers have perfected the art of pressuring people into just settling and buying at their store. Remember, there are plenty of places to choose from when it comes to buying silver jewelry in Mexico. You don't have to feel rushed into making a quick decision. Always browse around and get a feel for the market. If they are pressuring too much just walk away, or say no thank you, and move on.
  5. Look around at all the stores before you decide the one you wish to buy from. Don't feel overwhelmed by people pulling you into their stores and offering you deals. That is part of the fun when it comes to shopping for jewelry in Mexico. Remember, you won't get ripped off if you make an informed decision. Have fun!

I hope this helps you shop for jewelry in Mexico. Don't fall for the same old tricks that merchants have been using for decades. Instead just make an educated decision and make sure to have fun. Please leave comments if you think I have left anything out.

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4 comments:

  1. This is helpful to an extent , but you say "you wont get ripped off if you make an informed decision". You haven't provided much specific information here, other than to go with your gut and to be cautious. But aren't there any informative guidelines ? Practical ways of testing the silver? What is the likely result of getting ripped off? Just paying above the odds or getting a totally different metal altogether? If the latter, how can you tell the difference between silver and the cheaper counterpart? Do you have any guidance on that?

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