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Beach Vendors Prohibited! Really?

By: David Real | Real Acapulco News - 12 July, 2011

(Acapulco, AN 12 July) Acapulco’s Secretary of Tourism, Érika Lührs Cortés, confirmed that city inspectors from local law enforcement would be removing the ambulatory vendors that plague the beaches of the bay. She acknowledged that this is the number one complaint lodged by tourists concerning their stay in Acapulco.

The unlicensed and unregulated beach vendors range in age from around 5 years old to well over 80. They sell all manner of prepared food (like tamales, enchiladas and quesadillas), fresh seafood, fruit, nuts, snacks and ice cream. They sell shells, hammocks, sunglasses, henna tattoos, massages, readings of aura and horoscope, songs, junk jewelry, plastic buckets and life vests, hats, ceramics, sun tan oils – in short, just about anything that can be carried in a basket or on your back. Some are simply beggars. On busy weekends, the swarm of vendors keeps tourists from even having a simple conversation without being interrupted every 10 seconds to say “no thanks.”

Not all tourists are negative about the vendors. “It’s part of the show, part of the beach culture of Acapulco,” they say. And, obviously, the vendors find many customers on the beaches, or else they would not be there every day in such large numbers.

Regardless of the opinions of the beach clientele, the vendors seem to be a permanent fixture, in spite of the City’s ordinance prohibiting them. Last weekend, the ambulatory vendors were busy up and down the beach, as always, and “inspectors from local law enforcement” were not in evidence anywhere.