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Da Lat works to prevent scamming during 2013 Flower Festival

Da Lat works to prevent scamming during 2013 Flower Festival

Friday, December 06, 2013, 16:00 GMT+7

As the Central Highlands city of Da Lat is entering its festive season and preparations are being made for 2013 Tourism Culture Week, the 5th Da Lat Flower Festival, and the commemoration of the city’s 120th anniversary, city authorities are doing their best to prevent scams and rip offs.

To avoid scams and rip offs, which were rampant during previous Da Lat Flower Festivals, the city’s People’s Committee has worked since September 2013 with all local service providers, demanding that they post their room rates and service fees and agree not to hike fees.

The committee also announced its hotlines, which locals and tourists can call to report scams. The hot line numbers are: 0913881271, 0913853053, 0913953207, 0918007267, 0633701788, and 0633701726. They will be in service 24/7 and are publicly posted at all local service providers such as tourist spots, restaurants, hotels, cafés, and shops.

However, tourists, particularly foreigners, should never let their guard down and should always choose reliable service providers with clearly posted rates, the festival organizers warn.

Tourists are also advised to ask peddlers or service providers about their rates carefully and request that they write down prices before purchasing anything. This can help prevent overcharging after tourists have had meals or used services, as service providers can claim that tourists agreed to a higher price if there is no proof to the contrary. Tourists should also bargain for the lowest price possible, as they’re still being overcharged even if their bargained price is half or even one third of the proposed price.

The 5th Da Lat Flower Festival, to run from Dec 26 to 31, showcases flower breeds originally from Da Lat such as mimosa and “da quy” (wild sunflower) and many other gorgeous blooms native to the city and other provinces and countries. The festival aims to honor and promote the local flower farming industry and attract investment in it.

To commemorate Da Lat’s 120th anniversary, the city will be decorated with hundreds of flower baskets, arrangements, and ornamental plants around major tourist attractions such as Xuan Huong Lake, Prenn Fall, and Le Dai Hanh – Ong Dao bridge.

One highlight of the festival is the parade of floral cars and bikes throughout the night of Dec 27. Another is the program “The convergence of Dalat hues,” which features floral fashion and masquerade performances and displays flower breeds that can’t be grown elsewhere in Vietnam.

The “Hoa Binh – Da Lat night street” show features street art performances, rock, and DJ dance music. Elderly tourists can go to the “Da Lat – love stories” show to enjoy old songs about the city. Nostalgic travelers can find out more about the city at the documentary photo exhibit “The age-old Dalat train station” after which they can join in an exchange with Volkswagen buffs.

Some other shows are as follows:

- Dalat’s 120th anniversary and Flower Gala, 7:30pm at Lam Vien Square on Dec 30

- “Floral spaces,” in Dalat city from Dec 27 to Jan 5, 2014

- The flower market “Charming Dalat flowers,” on Nguyen Van Cu street from Dec 28 to Jan 2, 2014

Tuoi Tre

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