Discriminatory pricing for foreign travelers


Let me clarify something. Argentines do not get a discount. Foreigners pay MORE. Simple as that. When the Teatro Colon pulled this stunt before they shut down for renovations, they just doubled the price for foreigners. They did NOT reduce prices for Argentines. I repeat: they did NOT give Argentines any discounts. They increased prices for foreigners.


I do find this policy abhorrent and do not agree that visitors to Argentina should pay double to fly in Argentina . My family who visited last year felt that the prices charged for a few airline tickets and hotels in Patagonia were very high . I beleive that anyone who can afford to fly and stay at a 3 star hotel should pay the same price.
Tourism should be nurtured and hopefully there will be some changes in the wind soon.


Active Member
"steveinbsas" said:
Foreigners don´t need to pay for public hospitals, Argentines must pay

Except for those from neighboring countries who come to Argentina to work and don't really have any money, what foreigner (especially a tourist) would ever want to go to a public hospital in Argentina? One brief visit on a Sunday morning (able and willing to pay) was enough for me. I enrolled with a private provider in the next week. Any Argentine with sufficient income does the same. It looks like business in these plans is booming: Their waiting rooms are usually full.
I did and I didn´t regret it and the last time I checked I am still a foreigner in Argentina

When I accidentally stabbed my hand with a knife in the kitchen here, my doorman took me to a public hospital. They sewed me up, using plenty of antiseptic, and gave me a tetanus shot. When I tried to pay, they wouldn't let me ! So my sole experience with the public health system here was pretty good. Ken
oh, I forgot...I did have to go to a pharmacy across the street and buy the tetanus shot! Then I brought it back to the hospital and they administered it. Still, a good experience. Ken


My friend broke his leg really badly recently

They couldn't operate until his family found a place to buy the pin to pin his leg together.

"Let me clarify something. Argentines do not get a discount. Foreigners pay MORE. Simple as that."

Only difference there is perspective. You can either view it as foreigners paying more, or argentines less. Pay local taxes and you qualify for local prices, simple as that.

Personally think its a dumb policy for theatres, but it happens all around the world.


It's illegal to charge foreigners more, but quite a common practice (see Clarin 28/9). The only way to get around it is to speak good spanish, and make local friends, so they can tell you what things ought to cost. Also there is a law saying that every item in shops etc should have clearly displayed pricetags or price lists, to avoid this situation. So don't buy things in shops that don't follow this, and you won't get scammed. I never felt that I got ripped off, but I think it's because I speak spanish fluently and steered away from tourist traps.


JP...It is not a question of perspective as to whether foreigners pay more or Argentines get a discount. I mentioned the Teatro Colon's swindle. What they did was very simple: they took the existing prices and doubled them. For example, the most expensive tickets at that time (Gran Abono) cost close to $500 pesos. They charged nearly $1,000 to foreigners. Even wealthy Argentines would object to such a high price - and keep in mind that not all visitors to Argentina come from rich 1st world countries. As for the argument that foreigners do not pay taxes, it is not true. Each ticket includes Value Added Tax (called IVA here) of 21%. Fortunately this absurd policy backfired. Ticket sales dropped and the policy was abolished.


I have to agree with JP and not JG on this one. JG went off subject here, but in things related to travel-tourism, I have even seen discounts for locals in the USA. For instance, if you live within certain areas you can get cheaper monthly passes for the toll roads, bridges and tunnels, and ferries. As a tourist you would not benefit from these unless residing within those areas for certain times, but you may even need to show some local ID, such as a US driver´s license, or proof of your residence.

Argentina has a very devalued currency, so much so, that we usually find it virtually impossible to travel abroad. Look at Europe now. It´s 5 to 12 times more expensive for the same items there than here. So if we can get a break inside here, that seems logical. You should consider any difference as a DISCOUNT for locals.

Now, this should NOT include purchase of goods at stores. (NEVER pay dollars, all prices are supposed to be in pesos unless clearly marked as USD). To the contrary, tourists can actually benefit from a LOWER PRICE by getting a refund of the 21% IVA tax, (value added tax), if you do the paperwork when you leave the country, same as tourists in the US. (You can see this at the info desk at Galeria Pacifico.)


BA, your comment about prices in Europe is not all that accurate. I was in Italy in January/February and ate in good restaurants every day. When I returned to BA I found the price of pasta dishes about the same in good restaurants here. The cost of what I spend for meals here is probably about 75% of what I spent in Italy but that may have changed as there has been a lot more inflation here than in Italy. The bus/subway were 1 euro; coffee at the ubiquitous stand up bars (this is the way most Italians drink coffee when outside the home) was less than 1 euro; cheese in the supermarket was cheaper as well as quite a few other products. 2-3 star hotels in BA are now around $100 dollars a night. You can find better deals in Europe these days if you are resourceful.