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Shoe scam?

Canada
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Shoe scam?

Hi all. My husband and I will be in NOLA in September. We are first timers and are looking forward to some great food and music. In reading the various posts, I see references to the "shoe scam". What is the shoe scam and are there other scams that we should be aware of?

Blenheim, Canada
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1. Re: Shoe scam?

Darelene--If anyone asks you where you got your shoes say "In New Orleans". There are variations of the question but the answer is always the same :) Also if the "Fun Patrol" stops you it is a scam cuz they will ask you for money. The money goes to the Hari krishna's regardless of what they tell you. Those are the only two that come to my mind right off the bat.

Also don't talk to anyone who says "You can pet my dog" because he will ask you for money. And whatever you DO NOT GIVE ANY money to the "gutter punks". They hang out in groups and they all have dogs for the sympathy factor. They are not violent but they are perfectly capable of working. I think most of them have homes regardless of what they tell you.

Those are my words of wisdom! Hope you have a GREAT time in New Orleans. I am doing trip #13 in October and I can't wait to get back! LOTS of great drinks and food in that great city. Not to forget that the people are wonderful and friendly--heck even the tourists can be friendly too :)

Edited: 06 July 2014, 18:15
Canada
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2. Re: Shoe scam?

Thanks Deny! Great information for a first timer. But I have to ask what happens if I say I bought my shoes in Toronto????

Maryland
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for Las Vegas, Washington DC, County Donegal, Western Ireland
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3. Re: Shoe scam?

The best advice is to not engage in conversation with these folks at all. That's what they want, someone to stop and talk to them so they can wheedle some money out of you. A shake of te head and a "no thanks" works for 95% of them.

People can't scam you if you don't stop to speak to them.

New Orleans...
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4. Re: Shoe scam?

"But I have to ask what happens if I say I bought my shoes in Toronto????"

And this is exactly what this scam is about, the various ways the word "got" can be understood. The guy comes and tells you "I bet you I can guess where you got your shoes". You think that they mean where you *bought* them, you think "There's no way they know the answer", so you agree to a bet. The guy says "You got your shoes on your feet" or "You got your shoes on a sidewalk in New Orleans" or any other sentence describing where you've got them *now*. At this point, his big and intimidating friend or two shows up and demands payment for the bet you've lost.

So either just walk away and don't engage with them, or say "on my feet", or "in New Orleans" (and walk away.

Canada
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5. Re: Shoe scam?

Thanks Rodent! I would have fallen for that for sure! LOL! I've read recently that some of the gutter punks are getting a bit more aggressive (spitting, swearing,etc,) if you ignore them. Do they tend to hang out at certain locations? Or are they all over the Quarter. We are staying at the Omni Royal Orleans.

College Station...
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for New Orleans
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6. Re: Shoe scam?

The shoe scam is presented as a wager offer, "bet I can tell ya where you got dem shoes?" If you acknowledge the inquiry the wager is deemed made. The answer is "on your feet on Bourbon Street in New Orleans;" then some payment is requested, sometimes demanded. Some of those so approached initially respond with the answer, or say they live or are from there, but I have found the less interaction the better, and respond with a small smile and head shake without changing my pace.

The "party patrol" usually starts out as a comment on your seeming to be having or not having a good time, and evolves into a "report" or "ticket", then request for charitable contribution in exchange for a gift. Most would consider the charity bogus. Once again, for me, small smile, small head shake, keep on moving.

Most all the scams and pitches are predicated upon your giving some initial response, which could be a total lack of acknowledgement. These work particularly well in New Orleans because there are so many open and friendly folks with no agenda but niceness, so you can easily be lulled into letting your guard down against the predictors (and that's what they are).

New Orleans...
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7. Re: Shoe scam?

They would be mostly on Decatur. I've never had them be aggressive, just irritating.

And, even though I don't think you're likely to end up in Lakeview (a rather affluent but somewhat distant suburb), but there's a gutter punk there that takes the (very negative) cake: a young guy, of course with a compulsory dog, standing by the road with a note saying he's an Iraq veteran. When some people approached him and asked where he had been deployed, he first said "I don't know" and then eventually admitted he was a fake and never was any veteran in the first place. My Lakeview friends were sharing photos on Facebook about a month ago, the guy looks clean and young. Apparently, there are a few of these "fake vets" around, so I just in case it spreads to more touristy areas, I thought a heads up might be in order..

Canada
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8. Re: Shoe scam?

Thanks everyone. Some great information! We will be there for 5 nights first week of September. Will it still be really hot and humid? Any suggestions for some great seafood and blues clubs would be welcome too!

Blenheim, Canada
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9. Re: Shoe scam?

Darlene--The gutter punks are all over. A lot of them hang out under the balcony at the Hotel Provincial cuz right across the street is Latrobe Park. They sit on the sidewalk and yell at all the passer-by to "share" their food or drinks with them. They are loud and annoying to listen to and they hang out there for HOURS! One reason I won't miss my room at the Provincial. They are non-violent but scummy none the less. Just ignore them!

Rodent gave you a perfect explanation of "where you got your shoes" too! Just say New Orleans and they can't agrue with that! Irish has a great response and so does Loop! If you take heed to what we all said you will be just fine!

As for the weather it will be hotter than Hades but never fear lots of good cold drinks to be had! I have no idea about seafood (cuz I don't eat it) but lots of people on this forum do so they can help you with that. The only bluse club I have gone to is The Funky Pirate on Bourbon Street. It's a fun place and lots of good blues music to be had there for sure! Have fun!

Edited: 06 July 2014, 19:48
Canada
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10. Re: Shoe scam?

Excellent !! Thank you so much everyone. Only 2 more months until we get there. We usually head down to Vegas for a couple of days at that time but decided to try somewhere different. So looking forward to it!!!