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First Time to Cozumel

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by Wrock, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. deepsea21

    deepsea21 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Virginia Beach, VA USA
    1,091
    903
    113
    I do support hiring a private DM for your 1st day as you are pretty new to diving and may be new to drift diving. Don't view a private DM as paying for a set of training wheels, view it as paying for a limo driver that is going to take care of you and deliver a great level of service and a fantastic dive experience. Heck, if I could afford it I'd hire a private DM for EVERY dive as they are highly skilled at finding amazing sea life that an untrained eye will never see. I personally keep an eye on both the group's DM and any private DM's that have been hired because I don't want to miss any cool critters they may find even though I tend to dive my own dive and hunt for critters myself shallower where there is more light, more color, and more to see in my opinion. New divers tend to think deeper means better but it doesn't in my opinion on Cozumel. I say it just means darker, less color, less to see and less bottom time. However, some will certainly disagree with that statement.

    Anyway, I'm pretty sure after that first day with a private DM you'll be totally comfortable. Furthermore, as you're also diving with 3P's and Scuba Tony which are highly regarded dive ops, I think you may find that many of the more experienced divers are going to dive their own dives while maintaining and monitoring their general proximity to the DM and the group as a whole. That pretty much leaves you and a few others who may care to hang close to the DM with a "private DM experience" without paying for one. Rule of thumb as a new diver is DO NOT dive deeper than the DM. Stay level with the DM or above him. The DM is monitoring the entire dive by his computer. If you go deeper than the DM you are going to be outside the bounds of his profile which is a planned safe profile. Don't chase a turtle or anything you see beneath you deep as there will be more to see on that dive or subsequent dives. I did that once when I was a new diver as I just wanted to get down there and back up quick but at 120' my computer entered deco mode as it was later in the dive and I wasn't paying attention to my computer before I did that - just my PSI.

    Do be sure when you board the boat to let the DM and all divers on board know this is your first trip to Coz, you are newly certified or have x# of dives logged. Everyone will be thrilled to have a new diver on board and will welcome any questions you may have. The only dumb question is the one that isn't asked and THE WORST mistake one can make is to get on a boat and lie about their level of experience to the operator, the DM and the other divers on board. A diver who indicates he has a great deal of experience I'm not going to think twice about them heading deeper or staying down longer but a diver who said he was new to diving I'd be wondering if they had a buoyancy issue or were not being mindful of their depth, tank pressure and NDL if saw that behavior and would signal them to see if everything was OK. A DM or diver that looks at you and signals if everything is OK... Don't immediately signal back that it all is OK... Check depth, PSI in your tank and your computer for your NDL time remaining and then if all is good respond all is OK.

    Anyway, just a couple of my thoughts. In the future hopefully you'll be posting similar thoughts to a new diver who is asking questions.
     
    eleniel and Wrock like this.
  2. MMM

    MMM Giant Squid Staff Member

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Sask. Canada/Cozumel, MX
    10,854
    3,849
    113
    Employer supplemental insurance varies from employer to employer. Mine offers emergency health care out of country for one month upon departure. It specifically excluded scuba-related accidents. You have to read the fine print for that point. In any event, I get DAN for that reason AND buy supplemental emergency medical care insurance should something occur one month after we depart Canada. I worked in the provincial health department and heard many, many sad stories of people who did not get out of country insurance. These included bankruptcy and hard decisions like taking a seriously injured child off life support.
     
    Wrock and DandyDon like this.
  3. ggunn

    ggunn ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Austin, TX, USA
    9,958
    3,293
    113
    I'll just add that DAN is pretty cheap and not a bad thing to have in addition to whatever else you have just in case that other insurance finds a way not to cover a diving accident, should you experience one. Call it insurance insurance.
     
    DandyDon likes this.
  4. Wrock

    Wrock Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada
    21
    21
    3
    Thanks for this. So much good advice. I’ll be sure to use it all. I’m getting so excited, in 2 weeks I’ll be in the water!
     
    deepsea21 likes this.
  5. deepsea21

    deepsea21 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Virginia Beach, VA USA
    1,091
    903
    113
    Just wondering of you are renting gear or if you own your own gear yet?
     
  6. loudives

    loudives Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Hoffman Estates IL. (Chicago suburb)
    977
    76
    28
    Oh my you may be in luck!!!!
    Call your local Scotiabank and ask if their atm in Mexico has foreign exchange fees. Open an account and get atm card. Cozumel has a Scotiabank branch with atm and I believe the mega store has one too. Deposit into that account no more than you are willing to spend in mexico. Stop at the atm every few days and only withdraw what you expect to use in those days.

    My bank of America has a reciprocal agreement with Santander Bank that allows me to use Bank of America card in Santander ATM with no transaction fee or foreign exchange fee. Just came back from Coz and used the Atm with no fees and the exchange rate was 18.85. Street exchange places ranged from 16.90 to 17.50
    The Santander ATM was all Peso so a 2000 peso withdraw was $106.83us on my bank statement. (which was the going rate on the money markets) Off course your bank may have the same deal so check now and if not Scotiabank is all over Canada.

    This system allows you to withdraw only what you need, gives you the best exchange rate, pay for everything in peso as everybody from stores to restaurants will charge a lower rate for your dollars (us or Canadian.) And you don't get stuck with to many peso when done.
     
    Wrock likes this.
  7. loudives

    loudives Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Hoffman Estates IL. (Chicago suburb)
    977
    76
    28
    BTW car rental in Coz is ?? First your Canadian insurance is not good in MX. Mx rentals need Liability and Collision Damage waver. These are expensive to purchase at the rental car counter. The coverage can run from $30 to $50 a day. The best place I have seen is Isis rental car. They will rent to you for around $40us and includes all insurance.

    Don't expect new cars either as even Hertz and Avis only have a few cars under 3-4 years old.
    Take your phone and film and note every scratch, dent, discoloration, cracks in light assemblies, spare tires and License plates. these are some things that can come back at you when you turn the car in.
     
  8. loudives

    loudives Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Hoffman Estates IL. (Chicago suburb)
    977
    76
    28
    Automated Banking Machines (ABM)

    Need a Scotiabank ABM? You can find one when you need one. There are nearly 3,600 Scotiabank ABMs in Canada you can use to withdraw cash, check balances, and more.

    Plus, when you’re travelling, you can get cash at over 44,000 partner ABMs worldwide without paying surcharges or access fees.

    Find a Scotiabank ABM near you.



    There you go
     
  9. carobinsoniv

    carobinsoniv Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Moultrie, Georgia
    803
    216
    43
    Late to the party but:
    1. I would recommend skipping the car rental and just use a taxi especially since your condo is in town. Even if you tour the island with a taxi, it is probably close to the same price as the rental; you do not have to worry about a DUI, tickets, accidents, etc; and no worries about parking.
    2. Negotiate with a taxi and tour the island along the main road. There are some ruins you could visit.
    3. Looks like you may skip a mainland visit but RT on the ferry is $20 to 30 US. I would try for a cenote tour or the Tulum ruins. Would be tough to do both in a day. After either you could find a restaurant or bar in Tulum or Playa. Coba or Chichen Itza would also be options. Take the bus, taxi, or Collectivo to travel from Playa to Tulum
    4. Pesos for sure. You should have no problems with your ATM card.
    5. Go to TA for restaurant recommendations.

    Have a great trip.
     
    Wrock likes this.
  10. Wrock

    Wrock Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada
    21
    21
    3
    On using a taxi around the island is there any tips you can give me? I know from other travels that sometimes some taxis are more reputable than others. Can you negotiate with taxis in Cozumel?
     

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