Europeans find visitors from mainland China a mixed blessing.
While a great source of revenue for the tourist and retail industries, many first-time visitors offend the locals by behaving like country bumpkins.
However, there is one type of Europeans who are only too eager to welcome relatively naive, well-heeled mainlanders — scammers.
One poster on mainland social media complained of having been ripped off when he took his wife and son for a vacation in Italy during the National Day holidays, Metro Hong Kong reported Wednesday.
While his son was happily chasing pigeons in the square in front of Milan Cathedral, the man said, a young European man approached and handed him a handful of corn kernels to feed the pigeons.
The man then charged the family 20 euros (US$22.78), or about one euro for each kernel.
The father tried to bargain with him but finally gave in and just paid the money because he said he felt intimidated by the man and his strongly built partners, who suddenly showed up.
Another netizen grumbled about a similar experience in Paris.
He said he was tricked into entering a theater for a fake Moulin Rouge cabaret show.
When he realized he was being ripped off and tried to leave, several husky men surrounded him and demanded 300 euros.
After negotiating with them, he ended up paying 100 euros before he was allowed to go.
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