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Bakery in Los Arcos ...Warning.

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Plato

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...
 
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SabineP

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
:) Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...

To me this is almost slandering? Even more because the shopowner can't " defend " himself here like he could do on sites like " Tripeadvisor " ( dixit an honourable moderator here ).

Your manner does remind me of a pilgrim I met when I first walked the Camino Frances in 2011.
I stayed in a hostal in El Burgo Ranero and waited patiently for my turn to be helped in the bar/hostal I would stay that night.I even helped the owner with some translations. Then came in that particular pilgrim who " demanded " to be helped immediately and wanted a room ASAP.
Guess who got a cheaper price and a better room? That was me. I did not ask for anything.
Well anyway, what I wanted to make clear is that kindness does work... And that businessowners are just people like all of us.

Your forumname is a good reminder for me to read once again the Allegory of the Cave by Plato. Interesting stuff!

Buen Camino!
 
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domigee

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...
Do please explain. You were ‘stung’ how? For instance, did they say a coffee was 2 euros and they charged you for 5? Please tell.
 
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Curious - if you had such a horrible experience the first time, why return a second? As for overpricing - hard to know and impossible to comment if you don't explain what you consider overpricing. In these times...well... every business along the the camino will most surely have come through some very tough times and I would be happy to support them and be grateful that they have been able to either stay open or re-open and be available for pilgrims.
 

Cayou

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2015 Villafranca to SdC 2016 St Jean to LosArcos 2018 Leon to SdC 2019 Le Puy to Conques
In 2018; Somewhere before Villafranca del Bierzo we stopped in a popular bakery to get a bagette for the trail. The clerk handed over 2 bagettes and my wife said 'No, I only ordered one'. The clerk replied, "You're Pereginos, you get 2 for the price of one". And yes, we ate them both. 63B6E980-857C-4CA2-AD2B-3EF845DBD1C1_1_201_a.jpeg
Just thought I'd throw in a happy story!
 

good_old_shoes

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Francés ('15, '19)
Via Coloniensis ('16)
Trier-Nancy + Le Puy-Fisterra ('17)
Aragonés ('18)
Ask for the price before you order if you can't see a price tag/list. Then there won't be any surprises and you can simply say "no, gracias" and walk away if you think it's too expensive :)

It is understandable that businesses along the way want to earn money. Usually both sides benefit from that, pilgrims and locals. Cases of overpricing probably do happen (even if only rarely) and that is not ok, but... usually it is the opposite, in my experience?

Pilgrims get discounts in many places, and a lot of help, smiles and guidance from the locals, often without having to ask for it. I can't even count how often being a pilgrim was a huge advantage in many ways, in Spain as well as in France and Germany.

We really should be grateful right now for every shop, bar, and albergue that survived Covid. On some Camino routes you'll be happy to find any place that is open and selling food at all... You really learn to appreciate an overpriced stale baguette after you've lived off a handful sand flavoured peanuts you had to dig out from the bottom of your backpack for a whole hiking day...!
 

Marbe2

Active member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Please explain?

Several have requested more information. Obviously you felt strong enough to take the time to post a “warning” so we are waiting for a response from you, Plato, to listen to your account of what happened?

Gross and blatant overcharging? Could you be more specific?.
 
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Bristle Boy

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
I have difficulty understanding this thread as if you felt aggrieved the first time why you went back a second.
If this was a "common practice" then I'm sure it would have been experienced by others and would have been wider known.
I say this but you don't give any details to enable others to have any idea of what you are "warning" others of.
I'm assuming this is a small business and the transaction not a huge ammount. It may be that you didn't feel that what you purchased was worth the money.
Perhaps there might even have been a level of misunderstanding by one or both parties.
You don't give details on whether you questioned or challenged the transaction which, without clarity and explanation on your part, leaves too many questions to understand your grievance.


I wish you well on your travels....and don't go there again. Problem solved.
 
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Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Past OR future Camino
Many, various, and continuing.
It is true what Plato says. There are some places that charge pilgrims inflated prices. I could name several, especially in Fromista and Ledigos. The Camino has for centuries had a certain fame for crooked innkeepers and barmen. Judging from the reports from medieval times, we can maybe be happy to escape with our lives!

I hate being ripped-off, too. I think Plato was trying to help us.
 

Bristle Boy

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
It is true what Plato says. There are some places that charge pilgrims inflated prices. I could name several, especially in Fromista and Ledigos. The Camino has for centuries had a certain fame for crooked innkeepers and barmen. Judging from the reports from medieval times, we can maybe be happy to escape with our lives!

I hate being ripped-off, too. I think Plato was trying to help us.

It is true what Plato says. There are some places that charge pilgrims inflated prices. I could name several, especially in Fromista and Ledigos. The Camino has for centuries had a certain fame for crooked innkeepers and barmen. Judging from the reports from medieval times, we can maybe be happy to escape with our lives!

I hate being ripped-off, too. I think Plato was trying to help us.
I also hate being ripped off but a few more details (without being too detailed) would have helped and the warning better understood.
I will recount two life experiences as, an innocent abroad, that this is a wide practice and not restricted to the camino.
Firstly, on a package holiday, i was told that tbe price I paid was not that of the locals.
My second experience was a four day visit to Barcelona. Having arrived with my wife and three children i parked (where others were parked) and, at 5.00 in the morning proceeded to experience Las Ramblas and breakfast at the indoor market.
To cut a long story short on our return) the hired car was towed and I had to recover it at the pound.
To get it back I encountered a three tiered tariff. One euro per minute for residents of Barcelona, 1.5 euros per minute for Spaniards from outside Barcelona....and 2 euros per minute for foreigners. Cost to me 120 euros or 60 euros for someone who lived in Barcelona and should know better.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Rip-off - what exactly does it mean, though, in this case of an unnamed bakery in Los Arcos?

That they sell bocadillos with ham and cheese for €2.90 to the locals and for €3.50 to the pilgrims? Or that they sell them for €3.50 to everyone and expecting that only pilgrims will buy them anyway?

Please enlighten us so that we are in the right frame of mind should we approach this bakery in the future and not be able to just walk past it.

Note: I don't know how much a ham & cheese sandwich ought to cost these days in Los Arcos, I don't even pay much attention to the price and anyway, I usually ask for a bocadillo with lomo and sometimes they have to make it for me.
 
F

Former member 31048

Guest
Rip-off - what exactly does it mean, though, in this case of an unnamed bakery in Los Arcos?

That they sell bocadillos with ham and cheese for €2.90 to the locals and for €3.50 to the pilgrims? Or that they sell them for €3.50 to everyone and expecting that only pilgrims will buy them anyway?

Please enlighten us so that we are in the right frame of mind should we approach this bakery in the future and not be able to just walk past it.

Note: I don't know how much a ham & cheese sandwich ought to cost these days in Los Arcos, I don't even pay much attention to the price and anyway, I usually ask for a bocadillo with lomo and sometimes they have to make it for me.
I have to say, while sadly I have not been in Spain for nearly two years, in the past everything on the Camino always seemed inexpensive or at at least good value to me 🙏

On some of the more remote Caminos, we were just excited to see a shop or cafe at all! 🤣
 
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2014, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19
Various routes...
I mostly ignored this thread until I realized I had been there in 2015. After buying a quite delicious afternoon snack, I went back to get more to carry with me the next day. I remember neither being overcharged nor treated rudely. In fact, I remember the señora as being friendly.
If someone has a bad experience, fair enough. But I was quite happy with my experience at this place. YMMV.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
In a fairly touristy part of the UK where I live many of the pubs have varying degrees of dual-pricing, with locals often getting some kind of discount - occasionally formalised with a ‘discount card’ - but often just by being known to provide custom during the long dark winter months.

It occasionally does cause offence.

Last time I was in Spain and relaxing with a glass or two of orujo for medicinal purposes (at @Tincatinkers behest) with a small aged local, we ended up buying each other a few drinks. We were charged the same price, but whilst my glass was ‘standard’ sized, his resembled a bucket.
 
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truenorthpilgrim

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Norte post-pandemic
Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me.
Well then, why the post? For all the times I get pilgrim prices (€10 beds, hot showers, inexpensive meals, an albergue owner's or hospitalero's random generosity), I'll gladly get "gouged" a little. But, I'm curious what constitutes gross and blatant...are we talking a €10 coffee or a €15 slice of tortilla?

Having just returned from nearly 2 years in Indonesia, the local price and bule (tourist/westerner) price very much exists. Even if you're a bule who speaks the language and has lived there for 20 years, plan on experiencing "harga bule", not "harga lokal" (bule price vs. local price) on a semi-regular basis...that is, unless you're a fierce negotiator. And yes, I know Spain is different than Indonesia, but you get my drift.

It's not personal.
 

Christine Leneghan

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2018) and Portuguese Coastal Camino (2019)
When my daughters and I were finishing the Portuguese Coastal in 2019 we stopped at a bar about a kilometer from the cathedral in Santiago to grab a drink before obtaining our compostelas. The barkeep charged us ten euros for three cafe con leches. We thought, ah well it is so close to the cathedral, so whatever. We drank and left. Then he starts chasing after us down the street demanding we pay for our lodging for the night! We looked befuddled and explained we hadn’t stayed there. Maybe whomever he thought we were was rude to him the night before!
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I guess that many of us can tell stories of a two-price system, one for foreign tourists and one for locals or nationals of the country. If memory does not fail me, it was even officially approved/decreed in East European countries decades ago, in cities like Prague for example.

To be fair though, in a panaderia/pasteleria in a small town in Spain, I'd expect the same price for the same goods for all customers. But not necessarily at a cheaper price than I'd pay at home ...
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Well then, why the post? For all the times I get pilgrim prices (€10 beds, hot showers, inexpensive meals, an albergue owner's or hospitalero's random generosity), I'll gladly get "gouged" a little. But, I'm curious what constitutes gross and blatant...are we talking a €10 coffee or a €15 slice of tortilla?

Having just returned from nearly 2 years in Indonesia, the local price and bule (tourist/westerner) price very much exists. Even if you're a bule who speaks the language and has lived there for 20 years, plan on experiencing "harga bule", not "harga lokal" (bule price vs. local price) on a semi-regular basis...that is, unless you're a fierce negotiator. And yes, I know Spain is different than Indonesia, but you get my drift.

It's not personal.

I am reminded, when I visit a small town (family ancestors) near Rome, my local family always tells me to allow them to bargain on my behalf, because they will get cheaper prices. That happens in many places. In Rome, a few years ago, one restaurant would only allow us to look at the full break menu, while others, got a simpler, less expensive, menu. We recognized what was happening, left the menu on the table and quietly left.

However, I sincerely would like to listen to Plato’s experience.
 

BigT

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances (2020)
Camino spirit.
Be grateful you are physically and politically able to travel.
Be gracious and courteous to all and it will be returned.
Be caring enough to say gracias and attempt to improve the days of others--all of the time
Remember, it's Covid times.
Shopkeepers and private hoteliers have had it rough.
A bit higher pricing is occurring everywhere. Help them survive and thrive.
 

Mera

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino France, Camino del Norte, Camino de Madrid
Camino Porto, Camino Primitivo
In 2018; Somewhere before Villafranca del Bierzo we stopped in a popular bakery to get a bagette for the trail. The clerk handed over 2 bagettes and my wife said 'No, I only ordered one'. The clerk replied, "You're Pereginos, you get 2 for the price of one". And yes, we ate them both. View attachment 109280
Just thought I'd throw in a happy story!
What a wonderful story! It cheered me up. I too remember many unexpected kind acts like this. Once I stayed at a hostal called El Convento de Foncebadon in Foncebadon. I got there around 4 pm buy my daughter who slept in did not show up until 8 pm and it was getting dark. Of course I was worried. The husband/hostal owner volunteered and drove me up and down the trail looking for her. (This particular walking trail was on the right side of the road and was visible from the road). Finally his wife called him to inform that my daughter had arrived. It was after 10 pm by then but the owners opened kitchen to make dinner for us. We ordered 2 steaks. The wife said one would be enough, and yes the steak was huge enough for two and delicious. Why didn't they just sell 2 instead of suggesting to order only one? They were looking out for pilgrims. They certainly didn't have to do any of it. I am looking forward to seeing them again, hopefully soon.
 

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antepacem

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2019
I understand that a lot of pilgrims are on a budget. But if you can't factor in tourist pricing, can't accept that you definitely have more disposable income than a shopkeeper in a small town during COVID, don't see your privilege staring you in the face as you board planes and trains to have your 'spiritual experience'...that doesn't sound like a pilgrim heart to me.
 

Lhollo

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
CF pt2, Belorado to Sarria, May 21 – June 12, 2022
Oh my… This thread reminds me of the agonies I went through walking to Santo Domingo de la Calzada and then posting to my live thread afterwards. Something happened to me on the way, one of my few bad experiences on the Camino, and I ruminated… whether to warn others… whether I had misunderstood… whether warning others was a generous instinct… whether I was lashing out… why on Earth I would feel a need to do such a thing… I rolled it over and over in my mind and ultimately arrived at a new understanding, but one that applies only to me. So…

It’s hard to know what to do or feel sometimes?
 
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truenorthpilgrim

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Norte post-pandemic
I understand that a lot of pilgrims are on a budget. But if you can't factor in tourist pricing, can't accept that you definitely have more disposable income than a shopkeeper in a small town during COVID, don't see your privilege staring you in the face as you board planes and trains to have your 'spiritual experience'...that doesn't sound like a pilgrim heart to me.

Precisely!
 

good_old_shoes

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Francés ('15, '19)
Via Coloniensis ('16)
Trier-Nancy + Le Puy-Fisterra ('17)
Aragonés ('18)
In general it's certainly helpful to research price ranges for food ect. in the area you're travelling, and how to avoid tourist traps. The problem is probably, that everyone has a different definition for that! What is a rip-off to one person might look like a bargain to someone else. Some albergues / gites that felt like tourist traps to me were loved by others and seemed to have many happy costumers. So don't be too harsh in your judgement!

Of course prices are a bit higher in small shops than in big supermarkets, higher in tourist towns than in areas where there are usually no tourists at all, depending on quality, area of town, and so on. That's to be expected. But that doesn't mean that you have to accept being completely ripped off just because you're a tourist.

As far as I know, within the EU price discrimination is illegal, which means that you can't make up one price for the Spaniards and another for the Germans or Italians, just because you want to. There are rules for how things have to be price tagged, too. The EU has pretty strict regulations. If that information is incorrect, please feel free to correct me - I'm not a lawyer ;-)

Of course some places still try to get around the rules, for example by indicating higher prices in their translated menus only, hiding their price lists, not putting price tags on items ect.

If you want to avoid paying a different price than the locals in a bar, for example, have a look at the official price list before you order. If you're charged more, point to the price list. If you can't see a price list, ask for one.

 
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JamesVT

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2019
Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...
I think I know the place being described. My recollection was that the proprietor was a polite, businesslike woman who carefully indicated in advance the price of her individual items and checked to be sure I was okay with the cost. I made my selections and was happy to be able to buy them for my lunch. My sense was that she was being careful to avoid angry surprises from peregrinos who were wanting to pay less or expecting to pay less. My memory was that the food items were not cheap but also were in line with what I paid in many other spots along the Camino.
 

Grahammac

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Arles/Arogonese (2019)
If you stand in front of the main Cathedral in Leon and look across the square, right opposite and on the corner is a cafe/bar. I stopped there with a friend for a beer in 2019 and were joined by 3 young pelegrinos that we knew from the Camino walking. We all drank beer. Suddenly the 3 young people got up and walked away. Later, I asked the waitress if they had paid. They had not so I did. Sadly, I watched out for that all the way to Santiago and witnessed it more than once.
 

Lhollo

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
CF pt2, Belorado to Sarria, May 21 – June 12, 2022
There is a bakery in Los Arcos where I recently bought bread, and the lady told me in careful Spanish afterwards that she would be open the following morning from 6am or 6:30am (I knew at the time!) and that I could buy breakfast there if needed. She checked I understood. It was the only time a bakery had told me this and in any other place would have been very useful because we wanted bakeries each morning! On that occasion, we’d already paid for breakfast at the albergue. For what it’s worth, my impression was that she needed business, and was doing her best. There’s only so much a bakery in a small town can achieve, I suppose. It might be a different bakery of course, but it stood out to me.
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
What a wonderful story! It cheered me up. I too remember many unexpected kind acts like this. Once I stayed at a hostal called El Convento de Foncebadon in Foncebadon. I got there around 4 pm buy my daughter who slept in did not show up until 8 pm and it was getting dark. Of course I was worried. The husband/hostal owner volunteered and drove me up and down the trail looking for her. (This particular walking trail was on the right side of the road and was visible from the road). Finally his wife called him to inform that my daughter had arrived. It was after 10 pm by then but the owners opened kitchen to make dinner for us. We ordered 2 steaks. The wife said one would be enough, and yes the steak was huge enough for two and delicious. Why didn't they just sell 2 instead of suggesting to order only one? They were looking out for pilgrims. They certainly didn't have to do any of it. I am looking forward to seeing them again, hopefully soon.
I stay in a private room at this Convento …Foncebadon (non religious) whenever we come through. They are kind, terrific people, indeed!
 

Susan Maria

Member
Past OR future Camino
Le Puy to SJPDP in sections over 2016-2019
Camino Frances one day I hope
I'm reading this sitting in a well-known chain store cafe in Sheffield, Northern England. I definitely ordered a medium latte but it cost more than I was expecting and seems to be a large one. But hey, I'm obviously a southerner. Tourist prices?
 

JamesVT

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2019
If you stand in front of the main Cathedral in Leon and look across the square, right opposite and on the corner is a cafe/bar. I stopped there with a friend for a beer in 2019 and were joined by 3 young pelegrinos that we knew from the Camino walking. We all drank beer. Suddenly the 3 young people got up and walked away. Later, I asked the waitress if they had paid. They had not so I did. Sadly, I watched out for that all the way to Santiago and witnessed it more than once.
lol— I had the same experience in Cairo with a couple of locals. It cost me a few Egyptian pounds and a bit of pride. Later I turned the experience into a newspaper column about a whole range of travel experiences including getting conned, being given meals and gifts by locals, and all the surprising kindnesses that mean so much when traveling alone and far from home. My writing earned me a few hundred dollars, so I learned a lesson and made some money that I happily spent on the road. lol! The Camino provides.
 

jflorez

Joe Florez
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances: May/Jun (2018), Sept/Oct (2021)
Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...
I was just in this little pastelería two days ago (I am in Navarette today), and I could not have been more impressed with the lady behind the counter. She was so friendly and explained the food she had, and baked pastries. I went twice that day and remember once previously in 2018 in the morning. It's unfortunate you had such a bad experience (twice) as mine was the polar opposite and I would recommend it to everyone passing through. The pastries and sandwiches were perfect for this Peregrino.
 

Smallest_Sparrow

Life is rarely what you expect or believe it to be
Past OR future Camino
2012: most of some, all of a few, a bit of others
Not sure about the rest of the world but right now everything is more expensive than usual in the US (a combination of many things, less workers, higher wages to attract them, higher gas prices/less truck drivers more cost, extra cost to do extra cleaning per covid requirements etc). Just this morning the grocery clerk and I noted how prices have gone up. Businesses have been struggling to keep from closing for the last 18 months. I expect this won’t end anytime soon, and if businesses close then supply/demand will drive prices even higher.

Here’s hoping for affordable coffee and tortilla for all, I wish I were walking
 
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SabineP

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
Not sure about the rest of the world but right now everything is more expensive than usual in the US (a combination of many things, less workers, higher wages to attract them, higher gas prices/less truck drivers more cost, extra cost to do extra cleaning per covid requirements etc). Just this morning the grocery clerk and I noted how prices have gone up. Businesses have been struggling to keep from closing for the last 18 months. I expect this won’t end anytime soon, and if businesses close then supply/demand will drive prices even higher.

Here’s hoping for affordable coffee and tortilla for all, I wish I were walking

Also in this area. A local butcher sells his " bocadillos " for 3.80 € ( still a fair price for a third of a baguette filled with a delicious spread ) whereas before Covid it was only 2.80 €.
We should also take into consideration that during lockdown lots of staff from tiendas/bakeries / bars and restaurants found other jobs with more reasonable hours. In my country there is a huge shortage of well trained staff so restaurants now close an extra day.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Ask for the price before you order if you can't see a price tag/list. Then there won't be any surprises and you can simply say "no, gracias" and walk away if you think it's too expensive :)
Agree...so simple, especially since it was the second time around.
 

Malachiuri

CaminoTranquilo
Past OR future Camino
2021
We all have our bad days, be it pilgrim or local vendor. Misunderstandings happen and sometimes we have to add it to our list of experiences and move on.

In Jan 2020, I personally had an altercation with an albergue/bar owner over a plate of 20euro pasta and ketchup(no exaggeration, it was Heintz from a squeeze bottle) that nearly turned physical when his local buddies joined in the fun. Heard later this same guy took in some dangerously cold pilgrims, dried their clothes and boots, threw them in hot showers, made sure they were safe, and refused any payment.

Stuff happens. On average our Caminos are positive experiences, but we need to vent. Im chalking the OPs post as just that. Sometimes a Pilgrim just gotta vent a little.

Nice to know others have had positive experiences at the tienda for balance. Wish I have stopped there, I have been by it on 3 Camino and it has been closed. Will try again in Jan 2022!

M
 

Smallest_Sparrow

Life is rarely what you expect or believe it to be
Past OR future Camino
2012: most of some, all of a few, a bit of others
In a fairly touristy part of the UK where I live many of the pubs have varying degrees of dual-pricing, with locals often getting some kind of discount - occasionally formalised with a ‘discount card’ - but often just by being known to provide custom during the long dark winter months.

It occasionally does cause offence.

Last time I was in Spain and relaxing with a glass or two of orujo for medicinal purposes (at @Tincatinkers behest) with a small aged local, we ended up buying each other a few drinks. We were charged the same price, but whilst my glass was ‘standard’ sized, his resembled a bucket.
I lived in a tourist driven city, and a local bar was to me just the local place I often ate. a general was a friend of mine from back in the days we were nobody’s (I was still nobody). He visited the city on business and I met him for lunch at the bar—it has the best crab cakes and crab bisque of anywhere and the general was hooked. A year or so later he was back and wanted more crab cakes. We met at the bar but it was a game day and packed. The owner came over and told my friend “you’re lucky you’re with Sparrow or I’d have to turn you away (I’m sure not realizing who my friend was or how high in the food chain)” as he led us to a table. I reminded him often after that that he was lucky he knew me.
 

David with new Kit!

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
It is true what Plato says. There are some places that charge pilgrims inflated prices. I could name several, especially in Fromista and Ledigos. The Camino has for centuries had a certain fame for crooked innkeepers and barmen. Judging from the reports from medieval times, we can maybe be happy to escape with our lives!

I hate being ripped-off, too. I think Plato was trying to help us.
Im in Fromista now, waiting on my early dinner 😉 it's €14 for a two course 'pilgrim' meal with wine, but I'm fine with that, the menu is varied from the norm. I can always move on if I didn't like the price. Oops, wine has arrived, looks like I'm stopping 😁
 
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henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
Im in Fromista now, waiting on my early dinner 😉 it's €14 for a two course 'pilgrim' meal with wine, but I'm fine with that, the menu is varied from the norm. I can always move on if I didn't like the price. Oops, wine has arrived, looks like I'm stopping 😁

I think you’ll find that’s a (marginally) late lunch in Fromista!

I wish I were there. Buen Camino.
 

Bristle Boy

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
My guess is that from the start of the mass tourist market that areas of the world operate an unspoken two tier pricing system. Where a charge could be made on the unsuspecting tourist that could not be levied on the locals. The traveller is assisted in "lightening their load" sometimes as soon as you walk into the departure lounge at home.
I'm feeling that this may have happened in this case.
The mass tourist market of the 1960's showed that when travelling from the UK to the Costas ( for example) how cheap the Spanish market was compared to that at home.
I have noticed that tourist areas had not become as cheap as before.
I think this may have happened in this case and the pilgrim may have been treated as a tourist.
I'm not sure that to vilify one business for a practice that is widespread is particularly fair if this has happened in this instance no matter how much we don't like it.
 

Jeff Robinson

Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Just a heads up to pilgrims on the CF route going through Los Arcos..
There is a small tienda on the way going through the small town that looks quite enticing through the window with a selection of cakes and bakery items..
I got stung again this year as indeed happened to me in 2016 the last time I passed through here.. Gross and blatant overcharging to pilgrims.. As the saying goes: Sting me once, Shame on you, Sting me twice, Shame on me. So this time it's my bad, hopefully those wiser than me will be forewarned...
Plato,
Thanks for your “heads up“. I feel like I have to apologize for all the people out there who have minimized your effort to give them a heads up. Apparently some people don’t know what it means. It’s simply a warning. It’s simply a suggestion. It’s simply a be advised type of comment.
I also appreciate your refusal to smear this vendor with details that they could not defend against. Further details are not important. You told us enough that if I were to walk through this town and saw that establishment I could choose to go in or not. If I chose to go in I might be a little more careful than normal. That’s it.
So you went in a second time. So what. It doesn’t matter why. Maybe you forgot about this place until it was too late and then you remembered the same thing happened previously. AND you accepted responsibility for the second occasion.
For anyone to insinuate (in any way whatsoever) that if you had been just a little nicer, things may have turned out well, is in fact a judgment on your actions which they know absolutely nothing about.
Again, thanks for the heads up. Just as a note, I returned home last night from my Camino and volunteering two weeks in the pilgrim office. Aside from my first Camino, this has been my best Camino for a variety of reasons. I met some great pilgrims, I felt I grew, and I felt God worked through me to help others along the way.
My only regret is that I didn’t get to meet Ivar!
Buen Camino!
 
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Bristle Boy

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
I just don't know what this thread is trying to achieve. Should the pilgrim who frequents this establishment (usually between April and September) get their sustenance cheaper or should we be asking that the local population who support this business all year round pay more?
Should we vilify this business by "outing" them on an international forum and expect them to be there just when we need them?
I prefer to think that the local population enjoy a reward for supporting this business all year and that it is there next April when I need it.
 

Marbe2

Active member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Plato,
Thanks for your “heads up“. I feel like I have to apologize for all the people out there who have minimized your effort to give them a heads up. Apparently some people don’t know what it means. It’s simply a warning. It’s simply a suggestion. It’s simply a be advised type of comment.
I also appreciate your refusal to smear this vendor with details that they could not defend against. Further details are not important. You told us enough that if I were to walk through this town and saw that establishment I could choose to go in or not. If I chose to go in I might be a little more careful than normal. That’s it.
So you went in a second time. So what. It doesn’t matter why. Maybe you forgot about this place until it was too late and then you remembered the same thing happened previously. AND you accepted responsibility for the second occasion.
For anyone to insinuate (in any way whatsoever) that if you had been just a little nicer, things may have turned out well, is in fact a judgment on your actions which they know absolutely nothing about.
Again, thanks for the heads up. Just as a note, I returned home last night from my Camino and volunteering two weeks in the pilgrim office. Aside from my first Camino, this has been my best Camino for a variety of reasons. I met some great pilgrims, I felt I grew, and I felt God worked through me to help others along the way.
My only regret is that I didn’t get to meet Ivar!
Buen Camino!

There are aspects of your post that I agree with. I and others, sincerely wanted to know, specifically, what occurred from the OP’s perspective. If one believes they were overcharged… that is relative to what the customer believes s/he should pay. But providing concrete information, i.e. 5 euros for a coffee, helps some of us to further understand what the OP experienced and allows us to further decide if this establishment is one we should bypass.

Since the OP wanted to “warn” us, knowing the facts seems a fair way for us to determine,individually, whether we would stop at this establshment. That is not “smearing” the owner, but relating the OP’s experience. Let’s get real here! Asking for clarification does not equal smearing the owner!! If anything, without facts, the practices of an establishment have been questioned, without concrete information….And that to me is less fair to the business in question.
 
Last edited:

Stroller

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Norte (2015), Frances (2016)
We spend thousands on kit, thousands on air fares, and, in some cases hundreds on paradors and restaurants but complain about a few extra euros in a cake shop. Wake up and smell the coffee, a little perspective is needed here.
 
F

Former member 31048

Guest
@Plato seems like things have gone a bit off the rails with this thread - just my opinion. While it was not clear what had happened for you at the bakery, I’m sure your intentions were good for the benefit of fellow pilgrims and you would not have expected your post to create such a furore.

I’m finding myself becoming pretty cautious about posting an opinion on the forum (this post included) due to the often disproportionate backlash I see to some posts - again, just my observation.

Wishing you well for the rest of your Way
Buen Camino
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
@Plato seems like things have gone a bit off the rails with this thread - just my opinion. While it was not clear what had happened for you at the bakery, I’m sure your intentions were good for the benefit of fellow pilgrims and you would not have expected your post to create such a furore.

I’m finding myself becoming pretty cautious about posting an opinion on the forum (this post included) due to the often disproportionate backlash I see to some posts - again, just my observation.

Wishing you well for the rest of your Way
Buen Camino


I hope you do continue to post your opinions and ideas….balance!
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I’m finding myself becoming pretty cautious about posting an opinion on the forum (this post included) due to the often disproportionate backlash I see to some posts - again, just my observation.
Jenny, you know I enjoy your posts...hang in there and don't give up...your posts are appreciated!
 
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
We all travel from all the edges of the world, towards Spain, to walk our dreams. And then we complain about prices far lower in a beautiful, historic country plagued by lack of income, than where we come from, and yet we are that painfully needed visitors, like us pilgrims.

Whenever I walk in Spain, I return home with more money in my bank account than when I left. Even if I am generous with tips and respecting donativos.

I find it unethical to complain about a country that gives the rest of the world so much joy and happiness.

I am happy for all good pilgrims who have donated to various places during this deadly pandemic, keeping things somehow in place for our returns.

My heart is with the Spanish people: If I pay a few Euros more here and there, I am quite sure it is out of need, not greed.

These are hard times, not least for the Spanish people. Give them a break and some support.
 
Last edited:

Kelly Ann

Member
Past OR future Camino
N/A
Curious - if you had such a horrible experience the first time, why return a second? As for overpricing - hard to know and impossible to comment if you don't explain what you consider overpricing. In these times...well... every business along the the camino will most surely have come through some very tough times and I would be happy to support them and be grateful that they have been able to either stay open or re-open and be available for pilgrims.
I would say from the writing that after a few years people may forget or, perhaps even better, they give the tender another chance. That's what I would say. Oh, andyou would be happy to "blah, blah, blah", but that doesn't mean we all have to be happy to do the same, I hope. Remember, not just businesses have suffered during this but individuals as well. And I'm sure the poster is grateful, just like you, that is, for the ones that don't try and screw others who have also suffered the same.
 
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