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beware before booking to Cozumel

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by Rooster1, Jan 6, 2006.

  1. Rooster1

    Rooster1 Loggerhead Turtle

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    If you are booking a vacation package of (air and hotel) to Cozumel becareful
    the vacations companies are booking you and yes taking your money for hotels that are not open. I talked to 3 different agents from different travel agencies and they had/have no clue that the vacation companies they deal with were booking hotels that are not even open. These companies are booking and yes taking your money anticipating that hotels will be open without knowing for sure. This of course leads to one of two things (both bad).
    *1 you may be moved to a hotel but not what you planned on or paid for.

    *2 the trip will be cancelled (as has been happening) in which case could really screw up the time you have scheduled off work.
    You could end up spending that winter vacaion with a margaritta in the snow bank as you shovel the driveway.
    I unfortunately just cancelled my trip this morning before I shelled out the dough.
    My travel agent agreed it was the right thing to do when she found out that our hotel was not open yet with nothing more then a pending date that keeps getting postponed
     
  2. Christi

    Christi PADI MSDT/Dive op owner ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Cozumel, MX
    7,180
    4,513
    113
    It's because MOST of these travel agents do not take the time to research to get the facts. They don't care, because they can send you somewhere else.

    What hotel were you scheduled in and whenwere you planning to come?
     
  3. Rooster1

    Rooster1 Loggerhead Turtle

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    Christi you are right. One of the questions my agent asked is if I wanted to go somewhere else. I have thought about it and think I may break my streak of Cozumel 7 years in a row and head elsewhere as this is getting to be a headache. ( I will greatly miss the diving)!! But I cannot take chances on what we will get as a hotel.

    we would be travelling with 3 adults and 3 kids. we had 2 rooms and our flights at hand out of Detroit. but I could not count on the hotel being open or taking a chance on last minute runaround. it is supposed to be a vacation not a nightmare.
     
  4. scubawife

    scubawife Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: NY
    2,505
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    Rooster, I understand your frustration. My Dec trip had 5 flight changes and Casa del Mar was closed. We found another hotel and still made the trip. We were booked with them again for mid-Feb but that's now cancelled and I'm back on the hotel hunt. Air and diving are booked so we'll find somewhere to stay even if it's not our top choices.

    You might want to try Hotel Cozumel. We stayed there in Dec and I believe they are now back to full operation. Great pool area, very nice staff, adequate rooms and the food was ok. Good for breakfast and ok for lunch. We walked to town for dinner.

    If you don't think Cozumel will work for you this year, Grand Cayman might be good for you. My personal preference is the East End. Few dive boats, under 20 min boat ride to the dive sites, spectacular walls with really dramatic swimthroughs and nice reef dives. It's easy and safe to drive around the island and you will find lots to do. Ocean Frontiers has some nice packages with their condos, Compass Point, and I think they also do packages with The Reef (a timeshare and condo complex). Cayman is more expensive but you would not be comprimising on the quality of diving.
     
  5. Christi

    Christi PADI MSDT/Dive op owner ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Cozumel, MX
    7,180
    4,513
    113
    Sorry to hear that, because by March SOOO much will be different...and back to normal. That will be 6 months after the hurricane if you think about it.

    There are already numerous hotel options now and more opening up every week.

    Occidental Grand and Allegro are both slated to open at the end of the month and from what I hear from my sources, they are on schedule.

    Fiesta Americana will be opening mid-February.

    Villa Blanca, Caribe BLu, Hotel Cozumel, Casa Mexicana, Vista del Mar, Bahia, and Playa Azul are all open.

    There are also a slew of really nice vacation rentla homes and condos available.

    Maybe you should switch travel agents :)
     
  6. Rooster1

    Rooster1 Loggerhead Turtle

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    thanks Christi for the posts and I know your on the Island and see things first hand. I have not given up completely on Cozumel. The thing is that some of the hotels you mentioned are not a sure thing. Some we have already contacted and have gotten back to us and so far this is where we are at. the ones you listed in town I like them but I dont want to stay in town, one that you mentioned is sold out the others are not sure if they will be open or not for sure. We have no guarantees so far. If we did we would book.
     
  7. Cudabait

    Cudabait IDC Staff Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Houston, Texas, Bay Islands, Honduras
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    Christi's right

    A group from our dive club went the first week in december. We stayed at two B&B's Las Anclas and Tamarindo. Dove with Careyitos Adavnced divers. It was a great trip. The diving was like all new stuff. I've posted somewhere else on here about the trip.

    Sorry we missed you while we were down.

    Regards,
     
  8. CozumelAntonio

    CozumelAntonio Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Cozumel
    334
    117
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    With all this talk of some (a few) hotels postponing their opening dates I want to mention that El CozumeleƱo has MOVED UP their reopening date from Feb 1st to Jan. 27th, and will actually start receiving a few guests from January 15th. Playa Azul Hotel opened this past week. There are quite a few hotels opening at the end of the month, and although a few are still waiting around for the insurance to pay up to start rebuilding, and have pushed back their openeing dates, the majority are on time and will be open soon. You can check an updated schedule for hotels, condos, dive shops, restaurants, etc. here: Travel Notes Updates

    Many people have already come and enjoyed, don't let ONE travel agent discourage you, would be my advice. Read the post by ScubaSherry on this thread and you'll see different kind of advice from their travel agent...
     
  9. scubasherry

    scubasherry Nassau Grouper

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    Hi Antonio! I will post it here as well, and add a few comments...

    My travel agent did not steer me away from coz... infact she knows what kind of travelers we are becoming and what we are looking for in our vacation so she reccomended some smaller places to us to check into. She also tried to help get me airfare. But the flight we found I could sign up with NWA and get bonus points for travel so she told me to do it. (she helped me plan and then backed off so I could get the best deal) She is a sweet heart. She just asked that I give her a report when we get back! :admin:

    But... you must consider that we are not "fussy travelers" We don't need all the palm trees to be perfect - and so the reefs are damaged... they will still be more beautiful than the lakes we dive in around here. Seeing a building that has been destroyed and not rebuilt yet will NOT ruin this vacation. We perfer not to stay at an all inculsive this time because we want to get out and be with the people of Cozumel and experience the culture. We have taken 2 vacations to Mexico in the past and our most memorable experiences were ourside of the resort life.

    I will say that planning with a travel agent maybe a bit easier but planning on your own is not by any means hard. If you know who you want to dive with they can usually provide you with trusted places to stay. Booking airfare is a snap. If you are reading this then you can search airlines prices and book online because you have a compter. Its not hard.

    Ever since Willma I have just been gathering as much info as possible from the internet about Cozumel. I really appreciate Antonio's pictures and info he has provided! And all the info this forum and others have provided. I do not post much - but I read every thread trying to learn as much as I can about Cozumel. And diving there. First time in the ocean and looking forward to it.

    There was no sunshine officially measured in Grand Rapids again today. This makes 14 days in a row and we may tie the record tomorrow at 15. No sunshine is expected in the next few day just clouds and snow flurries. 15 days without a glimps of sun. I feel like a vampire I am afraid the sun will burn my eyes the next time I am blessed to see it.

    22 days left until Cozumel!!!
     
  10. pilot fish

    pilot fish Giant Squid

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Charlotte, NC, fomerly NYC all my life
    11,538
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    I understand what you mean. I think a little healthy caution in regards to Coz at the moment is advisable. You have to avoid listening to the people that paint a dismal, everything is bad, picture and those that paint a rosy, everything is fine, picture. Somewhere in the middle is reality and truth. Remember, it's your time, money and time off so be wise and have fun.
     

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