Footballers return to work, Fatal car crash, 'Too hot to work', & other stories

TODAY’S PHOTO : After the festa of São Pedro just after a week ago, the beach was cleaned thoroughly of BBQ remnants by a huge influx of seagulls, who had disappeared the next day. They came back again for a religious festival last weekend, and then disappeared again. These birds are smarter than we think … unlike the rest of us they know exactly when a festa takes place, and are experts at cleaning up afterwards.

Front Page News : source : Diário de Notícias 7/7/2008

The Monday edition of the Diário wasn’t on their website yesterday, it still showed Sunday’s paper. But I managed to get a quick glimpse at the paper version … a very quick glimpse!

Whilst the rest of Madeira are just starting their holidays, the football team Marítimo have just returned to work for medical checks and their first training session.

A head on collision between two cars in Faial (Machico) killed one person and injured 7.

Other News :

The Legislative Assembly of Madeira was due to work another 3 weeks before starting their 2 month summer holiday, but on deciding it was too hot to work opted to close earlier. So President Jardim will return from Venezuela to an empty assembly … whilst the cat is away the mice will play!


Message from Tobi : “I had my wallet stolen last week, I was very annoyed, as it had 300 euros in it which I had taken out to give to a friend, anyway its gone , I reported it to the police, phoned the banks in the evening straight away , cancelled my UK card no problem, they will send a new card out and I should have it within 7 days. Phoned the stupid banks here, cancelled my cards, and was told I would have to go to the banks and order new ones, so I did this the next morning.


Today someone from Banif phoned me and said they have my new cards but I need to deposit money into my account, I asked why, he said to pay for the cards, €30 each, I have an account card and a visa with them. I just went mad and told him to stick them where the sun don’t shine (I wasn’t that polite) and I will be in tomorrow to close my accounts. Unbelievable, if its not bad enough I’ve had them nicked, they want me to pay for new ones. I’m also with Montpio and they have been very good.”

Bad luck Tobi, hope you get it sorted out without to much expense. Don’t forget that some of the banks charge you for closing an account, so don’t be too hasty.


I went to another rip-off bar Saturday night (special foreigner prices), that had overcharged me earlier in the week, but because I was called in by a local friend who paid, the prices were lower. It’s not really newsworthy anymore, but last night was a little different … read on.

My local friend didn’t believe me when I told him last week, but Saturday night it became indisputable. Having established that I was being charged higher prices, he (not me) called for the owner / manager, who UNUSUALLY spent 10 minutes trying to justify the policy to me:

1. There are bars in Funchal and Calheta that charge €1.20 and more for the same beer.

2. “We don’t overcharge on the food”, you pay exactly what it says on the menu, and they are very good prices.

3. It is my wife that overcharges you, not me.

4. You weren’t overcharged very much.

He obviously didn’t get it, and no apology came, but he did squirm somewhat, and when I said I wouldn’t use his bar again He tried to drag me inside for a free beer and some pizza, which I couldn’t accept as I was wearing my hat of principles at the time. On reflection I should have taken what I could get, and then left for good, on the winning side for once. SO NOW WE KNOW SOMETHING BEHIND THE MENTALITY BEHIND THE INFLATED PRICES FOR FOREIGNERS.

On the same subject, I have known a local girl here for 2 or 3 years, who works part time in a cafe here. She said her boss rips-off everybody he doesn’t recognise, Portuguese included. The degree of the rip-off however does depend on your nationality … so does that make it slightly more acceptable? She also told me that another bar she works in at night, has now become a smoking bar. She said the police come in every night to check on the smokers … perhaps if you are not smoking they throw you out?

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9 thoughts on “Footballers return to work, Fatal car crash, 'Too hot to work', & other stories”

  1. Der , i have been to the bank , they had my old cards there which i had cancled, someone had tried to use them in the ATM.
    They wanted nearly €60 for the cancleation of my cards, which left my account in the red, i told them im not paying it and to just close the account, and thats what they have done.
    So be warned Banif seem to have to many customers and cant be bothered to look after them.

    I see you have had no trouble with BPI Der , so i might join up with them , and im also with Montepio, who have been very good , and you also get a book with them , like a building society, so while im waiting for my new card from them have still been able to take money out.

    as for rip off charges i have got clever, if i think something is to high , i ask for the receipt before i pay and also a price list , which they must have on show by law.
    If that fails ask for the complaints book, they properly wont charge you at all if it gets to that stage.
    I get pissed off with being ripped off on this island cause in English, and they think our pockets are lined with gold…

  2. I have been with Caxia Geral for about 4 years now and they seem very good, we pay very low if any charges and we also get a book and cash card. On the down side the interest for savings is unbelievably low compared to UK ( but I guess that will soon change in the UK as everything seems to be going down the pan!)

  3. Trouble is with the rip off is you need to buy indoors, because they can legally add an unlimited service charge for outside service. They are all supposed to display price lists, by law, but most have them hidden or obscured. In theory, any premise where you can see the price list you should be OK if you order inside.

    Dont forget that banking charges comparsion chart I put on the website a couple of months ago … could save a few € over the year.

  4. I suppose that in the 21st century, modern shoppers and buyers are used to fixed prices and proper labelling. When I was nipper in post war London, family owned shops always expected to haggle and pitched their prices up to accomodate this habit. If you paid what was asked , more fool the buyer and jolly good for the seller.
    Some even spoke their own language, so you could not understand their version of any negotiations held in front of you.
    London Commercial I think it was called and used rhyming slang, back to front word, Yiddish and bits of their native language.
    Madeira, I have heard frequently said, is like mainland europe 50 or so years ago, where the French regailed in overcharging foreign tourists.
    Given the chance i'm sure they still do!
    I've had a fiery run in with the patently obvious and therefore amateur stall operators who seen to like a full zero on the end of every total bill. A cucumber thing can go in sideways if you push hard enough. Please encourage all your friends to more aware and not just accept practices which are unfriendly and do nothing for the integrity of the Madeirans. They just need to know you are awake.

  5. A lady Madeiran friend I have here told me that she always asks for a discount in the small shops, and nearly always gets one. I don't have any problem with them hiking prices to accommodate that, and I will pay the ticketed price if I think the price is fair. Some of these businesses need all the help they can get to survive. I don't go in shops that don't put prices on things though.

    I am still trying to get my head around the cucumber thing Martin.

  6. My hairdresser has two price levels, one for tourists and one for residents, she actually gave me a discount once because she remembered she had charged my husband tourist price, so I got the refund against mine – like it!! I too, also say I am a resident if I go into a touristy shop and usually they will knock about 10% off so it is always worth a go.

  7. hairdressers are famous for the rip off. Personally that doesn't affect me, but I think any honest hairdresser would probably be overwhelmed with tourist customers if only they knew as it's a big source of complaint


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