One week in Johannesburg

Sawubona everyone!

I’m back to our paradise island after spending a wonderful week in Johannesburg, one of the biggest cities of South Africa. Known as the “City of Gold” after the discovery of the precious metal in the 1880s, the city seems to be a great country to live in, with loads of places to discover and many things to learn about the history of its people.

In case you are wondering the language used to greet you, it is called Zulu, one of the 11 official languages of South Africa. And yes, it is important to mention that black & white people live altogether peacefully thanks to their hero, Nelson Mandela who fought against apartheid / racism. As far as I witnessed, your skin color does not matter. Also, worth mentioning : I noticed loads of people of Indian origin with huge resemblance to Mauritians.

A bit more about the travel & stay

After spending endless minutes (in fact, nearly 2 hours) in our airport and 4 hours flight time in Air Mauritius’ new A350, named Le Morne Brabant, I landed in Joburg which has a 2 hours’ time zone difference from Mauritius. Again spent another 2 hours in the OR Tambo International airport before riding to the my final destination.

My first impressions : Sometimes it is difficult to grasp what some people there say because I’m not used to the accent. However, most people are nice and welcoming. Travelling around the country is great during weekends but however, there are considerable traffic jams during working days. Unlike in Mauritius, you can have 5 lanes going in the same direction, without any emergency or crawler lane. Despite those 5 lanes, traffic jams are a normal thing. Also, maximum speed limits on some highways are 120km/hr and from what I understood, there’s a minimum speed limit of 60km/hr on some roads.

I can say that I’ve been pretty busy there with sightseeing during the weekend, work during office hours and wandering in the huge malls late every evening. With a booking of 7 nights in a guest house on a bed and breakfast package, I enjoyed my stay in the one of the wealthiest regions, known as Sandton. On top of being a secure area, most shopping malls are easily accessible within less than 30 minutes’ drive while the office was only 5 minutes’ drive.

Situated at around 1,700m above sea level, the temperature is quite good in this region of the world. For the month of February, it is roughly 26 degrees during the day and the temperature can drop down to around 16 degrees at night. Very comfortable climate in Johannesburg right now but however, important to mention that there’s a severe drought in Cape Town right now. So severe that people need to live with under 50L of water per day (for every possible usage – bathing, toilet, cooking, drinking etc) as the city is running out of water supplies.

Currency

The currency used is in the South African Rand, often abbreviated by ZAR or R.

For indicative purposes :

  • 1 rand is approximately 3 Mauritian rupees
  • 1 US dollar is approximately 11 rands

The open-top bus tour

Still remember the big bus tour I mentioned in my Dubai’s post? Well, the open-top bus tour has the same concept whereby you buy your ticket valid for the whole day and you can hop in and out of the red bus any number of times you want. However, if you really want to visit each place along the bus route, I will advise you to book for a 2-days ticket. It can also be a tiring journey, so be fully prepared and careful with small kids.

For less than R200 (roughly MUR600), you get to visit the best tourist attractions of Joburg in one day. You might also need to pay keep some additional cash to pay for entrances at some attractions along the bus routes.

A few places to visit absolutely

The open bus tour allowed me to get to several places along their route but I chose to get off at the few mentioned places only because of lack of time:

Johannesburg Zoo

The first time ever I saw an impressive real gorilla of 1m80 and an elephant.

Carlton Center

Being the tallest building in Africa, Carlton Center is a skyscraper of 50 storeys also known as “Top of Africa”. From the 50th floor, you can have a panoramic bird’s eye view of Johannesburg

Gold Reef City

If you follow me on Facebook, you probably saw the video of the “Tower of Terror” I uploaded a few days back. I still feel goose bumps when I think about the wagon plunging 90degrees downwards from a height of 50m! With several other rides in the park, you can easily spend the whole day there with you family and the prices are very affordable. So, to the left below is a photo of the entrance of Gold Reef City and to the right, a selfie in one of the glamorous toilet of the Gold Reef City 🙂

Additionally, you might want to visit an ancient gold mine and go to Level 2, found 75m deep into the earth. It was an enriching visit, especially when you think that people might not have the same opportunity as water is flooding the old gold mine.

Some years back, visitors were able to go even deeper, but they had to close the access because of natural water flooding. During the visit, you also get to hold a pure 12.5 kg gold bar! And to the right of the picture below, you can find an indication of the depth of the mine.

Downtown Joburg

A place to avoid as a tourist, especially if you are alone but however, you are quite safe if you are driving through the region in the bus tour. Here, you can find shops, small snacks and etc., just like you will find in Port Louis or other towns of Mauritius.

SAB World of Beer

It is some sort of museum for beer. Yeah, the first part of the visit consists of videos showing the history of beer, how it is made etc. You also get to taste “Sorghum”, the traditional beer made by women in the Zulu culture. As per their culture, the “Sorghum” is drank in a special vessel pictured below. Very different from the commercial beer we all know; beer lovers would probably have never be fans of beer if the taste was kept the same lol.

During the visit, you also get a can of chocolate flavored beer along with 2 vouchers for tap beer in their bar. So, at the end of the visit, you are nearly drunk! So, please make sure that this place is last in your list!

Monte Casino

I also loved my visit to Monte Casino. If I had to describe it : It is a large mall building in which there is practically a village built inside, with fake streets, fake rivers, fake sky ceiling and an enormous open-air casino in the center. Everything is so real inside that you might think that you are actually walking on real streets and entering real shops found outside on the streets :

My first experience with Uber

For those who don’t know, Uber is a service whereby you can request a car to travel to your destination using the Uber application on your smartphone. Available in over 600 countries around the world, Uber has a large network of vehicles whereby practically anyone can become an Uber driver and earn a living. Using the mobile application, you just choose your destination and request a ride to the first Uber driver responding to your request. The mobile app also shows the position of Uber drivers in real time, as pictured in the left picture below. On the right side, you can see the estimated fare for the chosen destination :

Here in Johannesburg (and in many other countries), you can add your credit card to your Uber account. From there, you don’t even need to bother about payments. The moment you get off the vehicle, your credit card is charged accordingly automatically! You also get to rate your driver from 1 to 5 stars.

Other means of transport in Johannesburg include

  • GauTrain
    It is a rapid rail service covering over 80km and stopping at around 10 main stations in the city.
  • Uber
    As explained above, Uber remains a very convenient method of travel at a fairly good rate
  • Taxi
    More expensive than Uber rides, taxis operate differently from Uber as they normally require special license etc. just like in any other country. Because of the competition with Uber, sometimes taxi drivers might not appreciate if Uber drivers pick passengers near their taxi stands etc.
  • Taxi vans/minibus
    Available throughout the country and easily recognizable by the thin yellow reflective bands around the vehicles, the 15-seater vans offer a very convenient and cheap way for locals to commute around the country or to their place of work. One interesting thing about these taxi vans; The drivers and passengers communicate through hand signs to indicate where they are going or need to go as the destination is not written on the van itself.

Security

 

Although the first concern of people at the mere mention of “Johannesburg” or “South Africa” is insecurity, I have not felt being in danger at any time, but you need to be careful, especially when you realize that every house or building in regions with the high-income population are protected by electric fences and armed security services ready to intervene anytime. When you drive in regions whereby you can’t find any of these fences or security signs, you know that you are in less wealthy regions inhabited by the middle-class and even low-class population. You can also find slums in regions far away from the main wealthy regions.

Some basic rules are

  • Avoid travelling alone in unknown regions or roads
  • Avoid wearing jewelries or walking around with big cameras
  • DO NOT VENTURE in markets you might find in some regions.

As you can notice, these rules are applicable to any other country (exceptions do exist) but the rate of criminality in Johannesburg (as well as other cities in South Africa) is very high, hence the need to be careful and avoid taking any risks.

To give you another example, it is not advisable for tourists to be on their own in downtown Johannesburg whereby you can find shops and probably very good deals. However, shopping malls are generally safe but as you can guess, prices are quite high because you will find mainly big brands out there.

Shopping

There are tons of shopping malls around Joburg, easily reachable by the vast road network. And in some of these malls, you can find craft markets where you can grab good deals while enjoying a safe and sound environment. For example, I’ve been to Rosebank’s Art & Craft market to buy souvenirs but remember, always bargain!

 

 

I have been constantly comparing prices in Mauritius / Johannesburg and I can say that there isn’t a huge difference whether you are buying food, drinks, clothes or even petrol.

Poverty

Like in any other country, the society is divided into different classes depending on your income and social status. Joburg has beggars too unfortunately. You can see them around shopping malls or near traffic lights. While some of them carry a garbage bag so that you can throw your rubbish into them when you are at traffic lights, others might do some show to entertain you. The reason behind is to get some money from you while they entertain you or help you to get rid of your unwanted stuffs.

Summing up

If I need to come to Joburg again, I will gladly do so. Additionally, I even feel ready to hire a car and drive around here as I have been able to look around and observe the behavior of people in general. Vehicles are right-hand driven, just like in Mauritius. Roads are also in very good conditions and drivers are courteous in general. People don’t drive aggressively or don’t horn unnecessarily. Affordable to live in as a tourist, Joburg seems to be a good place for sight-seeing with your family as long as you don’t take any risks. The only unpleasant surprise I got here is that I had to pay a 10% gratuity fee (tip) of my total bill to the waiter in one of the restaurants. Well, it seems that this is the normal percentage to pay here in the region. I need to read more about my destination before flying next time!

A last thing : Some extra kilos are expected to show up because for the past week, whatever I ate was very bad for health : Oily, fatty food. And beer practically every single day!

Ngiyabonga (Thank you in Zulu language) for keeping tuned to the blog!

Take care!

 

Bye bye Port Louis

Ever since I started working, I have been greatly in love with Port Louis. For one minute, just forget the busy traffic and think about the number of shops, restaurants, hawkers playing hide and seek with authorities, great atmosphere (especially during the end of year festive period), the central market, China Town, the large variety of street foods and the ease with which you can carry out any transaction or administrative work. On top of being able to get the best shopping deals including unbeatable wholesale prices, everything is easily accessible within minutes by foot.

 

When DCDM Consulting’s management announced their decision to move to Ebene in 2011, it was clear that I was not among those who agreed to that. Consequently, I resigned from my job. Yes, you read it right.

Travelling to Ebene was going to take longer time too and I was not ready for that, especially if I could get a similar job in Port Louis or nearer to home. Soon after bidding my farewell, I was happily back in Port Louis 🙂

So, 6 years earlier, I had to move to Ebene on the 22nd August 2011, while I gave my employer a 3 months notice period. Coincidentally, I’ll be again moving to Ebene on the 21st August 2017. This is so freaking strange but this time, this office switch suits me for many reasons.

There are obviously disadvantages too, for example, excessively high price of parking and an over-rated cyber industrial zone with nothing else apart from buildings, buildings and buildings.

Officially on paternity leaves…

Today was my last day in the Port Louis office as I have applied for the paternity leaves during the next days. In case you missed the announcement for the birth of my second son, Divyansh, on the 25th July 2017, here’s the screenshot from Facebook :

Did you know that despite having 5 paternity leaves, you need to take them at a go, for the next 5 consecutive working days, irrespective whether there are non-working days (week-ends or public holidays). For instance, counting 5 days as from tomorrow ( Tuesday), I will be unfortunately losing a paternity leave on Saturday but I have got no other option due to some unforeseen situation. I find this unfair but anyway, it seems that the Employment Rights Act has always been like that!

With a new office location and even more responsibilities as a dad, I look forward for a brighter future and more fun in life. So, keep tuned for more updates on the blog!

Cheers!

[Online shopping] Exemption raised to Rs3000 for imports following the Budget 2017 – 2018

That’s indeed a good news for those who spend their time and money on online shopping platforms such as eBay, Amazon or Alibaba!

In the Budget 2017-2018 exercise of the 8th June 2017 by The Prime Minister, Pravind Jugnauth ( btw, I hate to say that and I am sure, I’m not the only one), the following section was included in the Annex section :

A.3. Customs duty
(c) Import by Post and Courier Services
Presently, the first Rs 2,000 of the value of an article imported by post and courier services is exempt from customs duty and VAT. Henceforth, this exemption value is raised to Rs 3,000.

 

Example :

So, if you purchase an item valued at, let’s say, Rs 10, 000, you will have to pay VAT (or custom duties, where applicable) on only Rs 7, 000. This amounts to 15% of Rs 7,000 = Rs 1, 050. So, your item has cost you a total of Rs 11,050. Without this exemption increase, your item would have cost you Rs 11, 200. Quite a saving!

As a reminder, there’s also a Rs 30, 000 limit beyond which you need to hire a customs broker to be able to clear your items out of the custom. Prior to Budget 2013, the limit was only Rs 10, 000 and there was no exemption. Read more here.

That’s indeed a good news for those who spend their time and money on online shopping platforms such as eBay, Amazon or Alibaba! This said, I now have to update my old articles!

 

I’m loving AliExpress.com

Hiya everyone!

Being one of the most active resources talking about online shopping, this blog is constantly visited by people looking for information about online shopping, custom procedures, charges, shipping and other topics. For some of you, you might be among those who discovered my blog in the same way too. I dedicate much time to replying comments and also messages in order to help those in quest of information.

Personally, I am not ashamed to say have been exclusively shopping on eBay. While other Mauritian shopping addicts do purchase on other popular international web sites (for example laredoute.fr or utsavfashion.com), I was pretty deceived that items on Amazon are rarely available to Mauritius.

Enter AliExpress…

AliExpress

While looking for specific gadgets, I decided to try my luck on AliExpress a few weeks back. Till now, I avoided the web site as I believed that Ebay was probably the most secure platform for online purchases especially when you need to resolve conflicts for defective items or items you never received. And as long as I got my items on eBay, I had no worried.

Now that my 2nd purchase from AliExpress got delivered today itself, I can say that I have been pleasantly surprised in many ways, hence the need to write a blog post about this online shopping platform.

Wide variety of items

Before reading any further, you should know that AliExpress exclusively deals with sellers from China. So, forget about looking for items being shipped from the US or UK or exclusive brands from other markets. Don’t worry, you will still be able to purchase Samsung smartphones or Nike shoes but you will notice that there exist a wider choice of Chinese brands (and sometimes replicas or unbranded) available on the shopping platform. With brands like ZTE or Xiaomi, your choices just got wider!

Just to give you a simple example : While looking for a car dashboard camera (dashcam) on Amazon and eBay, I stumbled across a dozens of similar cameras sold under different brands on AliExpress, hence, prices were more competitive. Shipping options were much more interesting too, especially with better delivery times as described further below.

However, you need to be more alert and choose your products carefully. Contact sellers if needed. For example, the pair of shoes below is being sold at $75.79 but when purchased via the mobile app, the discounted price is $36.68!

shoes

Shipping

Despite having purchased only two items till now, I have been amazed by the shipping experience. Information is readily available, just like Ebay. For those who shop on Amazon, you most probably know the pain regarding shipping.

AliExpress shipping to Mauritius

Clicking on the small arrow reveals more (expensive and reliable) shipping options via partners :

More shipping options

Delivery times

Purchase #1 : I received the item exactly two weeks after the order date while delivery estimates were 15-39 days using free shipping via Singapore Post Air Mail.

Purchase #2 : The item reached home 17 days after the order date with delivery estimates of 39-60 days via paid shipping of $4 via China Post (Small packet by Air)

As you can see, I’m more than satisfied! During my past experiences while shopping on Ebay, items from China and Hong Kong took at least 3-4 weeks for delivery. Important to note that on Ebay, items shipped from the UK took on average 2 weeks to reach Mauritius and items from US usually take 3 weeks for delivery.

Shipping upgrades

You probably heard of upgrades to first class or business class when travelling by air plane but for my first purchase, my item was freely upgraded from Hong Kong Post Air Mail to Singapore Post Air Mail :

shipping upgrade

Payment options

You all heard about Paypal, right? Well, AliExpress has its own system, named as AliPay. Additionally, you can use Visa, MasterCard, Western Union, Maestro and other platforms I never heard of : Boleto, QIWI, WebMoney :

payment

No confirmation codes needed for input back onto the system as required by Paypal. Just enter your credit card details and start shopping!

Customer protection

I haven’t encountered any problem yet (keep fingers crossed) but I read that there’s protection for buyers, similar to eBay. The screenshot below gives more details about this protection :

refunds

Zip codes and bla bla?

Before ending up with tens of messages and comments regarding zip codes / states etc, I prefer posting a sample of the Mauritian delivery address :

address

 

What’s next?

 

Since the past two weeks, I have been constantly visiting AliExpress instead of eBay. And coincidentally, the 6th anniversary of the web site is being celebrated right now with big promotional sales. BTW, purchases made with the mobile apps (Android & iOS) get further discounts. Don’t forget that items valued above Rs30,000 need a custom broker and used / refurbished items need permits from the Ministry of Commerce. Imports of mobile phones for commercial use might need an ICTA permit.

So, grab this opportunity to get some good deals!

Do you always double-check your receipt at the supermarket?

Intermart Kickstart

Hi everyone!

I just wondered if all of us here always go through their receipt to make sure that nothing is overcharged and that every item is there, in the correct amount? Fortunately for me, I am used to do this each and every time I go through the cashier’s counter and this saved me quite some money yesterday.

Instead of billing me Rs57.50 for a pack of 6 Kick Start, their system recorded 6 times that amount.  Do you imagine that price difference? Of course, I immediately informed the cashier who refunded me the amount charged unnecessarily.

Intermart Receipt

Unfortunately, this is a common problem in supermarkets and hypermarkets around the island because either their systems are not updated correctly or the price tags are wrongly displayed. This problem does not only concern supermarkets. Even restaurants sometimes have these problems too. You can be charged for things you haven’t consumed, lol. So, you are warned!

Do you have this habit of cross-checking too? If no, you should adopt it, immediately 😉

Take care!

Our first visit to AngelBerry ( Riche Terre Mall )

Tonight, we tried the new AngelBerry’s frozen yogurt (fro-yo).

Read the post for my short review and lots of pictures:-)

As planned a few days beforehand, we drove straight to the brand new Riche Terre Mall after work. Despite we spent quite some minutes to decide where we were going to have our dinner, we finally opted for Charleys Philly Steaks. On our previous visit here, we tried the “Noodle Box” and I must say that we enjoyed the dinner, despite the cuisine being a bit too salty IMHO. Anyway, tonight’s dinner wasn’t bad either. A real feast! Both Dhaneesha and myself loved the food there. Even the chips (covered with melted cheese) were yummy!

Charleys

Dessert time!

angelberry0

After the wonderful feast which costed Rs400, we moved to “Angelberry” for a dessert. On reaching there, a staff member welcomed us before explaining how to proceed. Introducing a totally new concept in the island (although someone once mentioned a similar concept somewhere else in the island), AngelBerry serves fro-yo (Frozen yogurt) and Blenders. You walk in the shop, grab a cup and serve yourself with one or several of the flavors of yogurt ranging from Vanilla, Mint, Chocolate and etc.

angelberry1

angelberry2

My fro-yo had a weird look and shape. Please don’t bother about it lol.

Then, you move on to the toppings section where you can choose as much toppings as you want. Some of them are pictured below :

angelberry4

While I was still shooting a few pictures with my camera phone and having a look at the range of toppings available, Dhaneesha already started to fill her cup :

angelberry3

Let’s water your mouth 🙂

angelberry5

angelberry6

angelberry7

angelberry9

angelberry10

What’s next?

Now that we covered our fro-yo with the toppings, you can walk to the cashier who will weight your cup(s). Each 100g costs Rs55 and our bill amounted to Rs225 for the 0.4kg, as pictured below. In fact, the toppings will make your bill heavier (or bigger, if you want). So, choose them carefully instead of just trying to make your cups look nice lol. I must admit that for our first time, we did put a bit of everything in our cups.

angelberry8

We liked it!

angelberry11

AngelBerry’s fro-yo tasted great! It was something completely different and new for both of us and on top of that, it did not cost that expensive. The next time, I’m gonna try its blenders, costing Rs110 each I think. Now, just imagine the fun and excitement when kids go there! For info, another AngelBerry opened its doors at Bagatelle and from what I heard, there should be one either in Grand Bay La Croisette or Super U (“Coeur de ville”, ridiculous name, I know!)

To conclude, you must really pay a visit to one of the AngelBerry shops. That’s definitely something you need to try someday if you haven’t yet! It made me remember the good old times during which we drove to Shoprite’s Milky Lane for some nice ice cream and milkshakes 🙂

Grand Baie La Croisette: my first visit…

Yesterday, we went for a night tour at the new shopping mall of Grand Baie, La Croisette. After my post on Bagatelle and about things which make a mall popular, here’s my review of the Grand Baie La Croisette mall, on the very first visit.

Yesterday, we went for a night tour at the new shopping mall of Grand Baie, La Croisette. After my post on Bagatelle and about things which make a mall popular,  here’s my review of the Grand Baie La Croisette mall, on the very first visit.

Uncompleted

With the opening scheduled for the end of October, La Croisette team made head and tail their maximum to stick to their announced opening date. That’s probably their first error. Even after the opening, construction is still going on practically everywhere, whether inside or around the mall.

Take this ‘thing’ for instance. I don’t even know if it is an abstract art or it is still being built.

One thing for sure, it was badly presented to the public, right at the entrance of the first floor, when you are coming from the parking (ground floor).

I do not have exact figures but probably more than 50% of shops have not yet opened their doors. At 8pm yesterday, the mall was like a busy bee-hive.

Security

Secondly, there’s a big lack of proper road infrastructure. As I drove around the mall, I felt insecure at the sight of materials used for road warnings literally ‘scattered’ around and on top of that, no proper lightning.

There are lifts but none are operational yet. What if some kids run into them???

The food court

In a previous post, I wrote about the importance of the food court. The one in this new shopping mall is tiny! I personally felt suffocated when passing by while visiting.  Once again, there was a big lack of proper lighting in this area.

In front of food court:

The food court itself:

Disgusting view of the ground floor, just besides the food court (first floor):

 The mall

Coming to the mall itself, I found the idea behind the infrastructure different: The parking areas were outside the mall and occupied the whole of the ground floor while all shops, restaurants and the cinemas were on the first floor (and above). The squared lighting spots with changing colors are pleasing but I found that the water fountains now form part of a cliché of the malls of the island.

But however, with the major interests of the mall being built on the first floor, you can only see concrete practically everywhere, except for the trees… I wished to see more green areas, closely integrated within the mall area.

The parking

And now, a few pictures of the parking on the ground floor :

Did you know?

These parking slots will be paying as from December. From what I learnt, only parking on the mall outside will be free.

Good things in there?

Some people do tell me that I’m always criticizing. I’m not to be blamed if I always come across those things which leave me thinking what could possibly have gone wrong and how they could have been improved. Anyway, here’s a few good things about the mall:

– New shops and restaurants in the north (For example, Ocean Basket and WoolWorths)

It seems that prices at WoolWorths La Croisette are better than those at Bagatelle. Can anyone please confirm?

– New hypermarkets (La Croisette -> Intermart and very soon, Pick n Pay, some 100m from the new mall)

– Star Cinemas, now in the north.

You have been warned!

These signs can be seen at the entrance of each of the “building blocks”(or sections) of the mall.

They are clear about it :

  • No Point and Shoot cameras.
  • Stig can’t enter the mall.

The verdict.

Crappy uncompleted mall.

If you can’t deliver something on time, simply don’t open it to the public. Remember, you never get a second chance to give a first impression and IMHO, whenever I think of Grand Baie La Croisette, the pictures of the crappy and uncompleted mall will come to my mind. And I still can’t understand the logic behind banning only point and shoot cameras. So, only rich ones with big dslrs and good camera phones can shoot pictures, right?

Who wants to share some words about their visit there???

 

What makes a Mauritian shopping mall popular?

With the growing number of shopping malls, Mauritians have a much wider choice when they need to find a place to eat.

Believe me or not, the discussion on this topic started at approximately 730am yesterday (Sunday), while a friend and myself were swimming at some 100m from the shore of Pereybere beach.

With the growing number of shopping malls, Mauritians have a much wider choice when they need to find a place to eat. While several world famous restaurants have now their own branch(es) in Mauritius, more importance is being given to food courts within shopping malls.

Months earlier, the Shoprite food court or that of Phoenix commercial centre were practically overcrowded most of the time. But ever since the opening of Bagatelle, the rules of the game have changed. The one with the best food court and sets of restaurants win. Consequently, the crowds moved to the largest shopping mall of the island while Cascavelle Shopping Mall is trying to attract people going through the western part of the island.

Existing shopping malls had to review their strategy. For example, food courts at Shoprite and Phoenix went through renovation works. Same for the food court at Super U, Grand Bay. With the construction of the La Croisette Shopping mall, the competition is going to be really tough in Grand Bay. As for Phoenix Les Halles, it reached a Game Over state a long time back.

Some weeks back, I accidentally came across another shopping mall some kilometres away from Goodlands. At noon on a Saturday, the “VIP Village Shopping Mall” was empty, except the few sales person and the security guards.

Personally, I find Mauritians more interested in spending some time with the family, around some nice food. Walking endlessly around the shopping malls and window shopping form part of the recreational activity and at the end of the day, the food matters the most.

What do you think?

Disclaimers in shopping malls, hypermarkets among others…

Have you ever spent a minute reading and understanding what is usually written before entering a hypermarket’s or shopping centre’s parking for instance?

Hello everyone!

Have you ever spent a minute reading and understanding what is usually written at the entrance of your favorite hypermarket or shopping centre’s parking?

Most of the time, nobody really pays attention to them, unless something bad happens, really bad. Like someone forced into your car, stole your personal belongings or even, your car vanishing into the air. Just like it happened very recently in the Bagatelle Mall of Mauritius.

Today, I was quite stunned with a rather ‘detailed’ notice, posted in the new mall at Cascavelle.
*You can click on the image below to enlarge*

Does that make you feel comfortable to shop in here? Most importantly, the following sentence :

All persons entering these permises do so at their own risk and peril.

Question : Why would Person X prefer to shop at ABC Shopping Mall rather than to buy those same stuffs in Port Louis for example?

There might be many reasons but I believe that some of them are :

  • At ABC Shopping Mall,  the person might feel himself (and his belongings, car for example) to be more secure.
  • Contrary to shopping in the same brand shops in Port Louis, the ABC Shopping Mall offers more facilities (including parking, food courts) – all at the same place.
  • You are free to add more reasons here (through the comments section)

I fail to understand why shopping malls and other hypermarkets etc cannot really ensure that their environment is safe. That should be their main concern. Advertising about your shops etc is not enough. Show how your mall is different from streets.  How can they invite people to use their billions-invested complex with a peace of mind when they cannot give a guarantee that THEY should feel more secure than on a street?

This said, I have been to Cascavelle today. If you have been to Bagatelle, that’s it. Cascavelle is just its miniature-like sister, but with a large “entrance disclaimer” notice, probably to prevent people suing them in case their cars get robbed, too.

Update : 
Just to give you an example, I shot this one in the parking at Cascavelle.

Who is accountable in this situation in case some car collides with the Caddys or one of them happen to leave the non-caddy space?

Take care!