Travelers visiting Los Cabos are advised that the fish they selected for dinner, most likely is not the fish they were served by the waiter.
In fact, a recent report by Oceana, an organization dedicated to the protection of the oceans, claims that 60 percent of the time travelers to Los Cabos receive a different fish on their plate for their meal than they originally ordered.
Oceana did not put the blame for the fish switcheroo at the feet of the waiter or even the restaurant, committing fraud by making customers pay more for a cheaper fish.
The issue behind the fish problem may often simply be mistaken identity. That’s the case as many fish plates in Los Cabos are simply promoted as “fish” without any specific species type to be served.
According to the activist group, six out of ten times diners were served a popular fish plate, they ended up being served a cheaper river-caught variety of fish. They even have DNA to back up their claims.
The most common replaced saltwater fish served in Los Cabos included the popular, and often pricy, marlin and red snapper. Others included cabrilla, sierra, and jurel types of fish.
They were often replaced with cheaper river-caught fish such as ribereña, como el verdillo, pierna, cochito and cardenal.
Oceana said in their report that the replacement fish offers nutritional value to consumers.
However, because they are common unnamed and underappreciated fish, they actually are given little value in the marketplace and fair prices are not paid to the fisherman.
Most Common in Los Cabos
They reviewed several cities in Baja California Sur to see how often the problem occurs.
Los Cabos led all of the cities in the area with more than 60 percent of the time the most expensive ocean caught fish replaced by cheaper river-caught or aquaculture fish.
In the less tourist-driven capital of the state, La Paz, the percentage of replaced with fell to 37 percent with the region average being 42 percent.
It is not surprising that the area catering to most of the tourists would have the issue with mistaken identity of fish. This directly led to travelers to the beach resort destination overpaying for their meals and not getting the expected value.
What Travelers Need to Know
Unfortunately, it is not easy for ordinary travelers to Los Cabos to recognize the correct fish being served, especially after being served.
However, Los Cabos visitors can double-check by questioning and confirming that it is the right fish once the waiter delivers it to the plate.
Los Cabos tourists however may want to ask hotel and resort staff to determine the reputable restaurants in town that do not have a reputation for replacing less expensive river or aquaculture fish for the more expensive ocean-caught varieties.
For the best value, Los Cabos travelers may simply want to select non-specific “fish” on the menu, such as “pescado frito” for generic fried fish. That way, travelers will not be overpaying for something that they are not getting on their plate.
Alternatively, in many of marinas in Los Cabos, visitors can actually see fisherman bring their catch up on the dock and nearby walkways to sell directly to local consumers and tourists.
Travelers can make a deal and purchase the exact fish desired before it is handed off to a nearby chef and prepared fresh.
It’s a unique experience that provides visitors to Los Cabos the guarantee to have their preferred fish freshly filled and prepared for a meal unlike any other type of restaurant experience.
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