Amigos Del Mar Scuba Diving
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- 98%Outdoor Enthusiasts
Member Reviews (2)
- Amigos Del Mar Scuba DivingFirst to ReviewAug 13, 2012
Notice I said FUN but not Safe. The dive masters are great people, and they do try to make things fun and interesting for you. We had 50 divers and we essentially rented out the shop and all their boats for 6 days straight. However, they certainly aren't the safest DMs. I'm a very experienced diver so it didn't matter to me, as I bring and assemble/check my own gear but for novices, this could be an issue. They aren't very attentive of the divers as a group, and we had our own bringing up the rear of each group. Each group could be spread out to 30-40 meters or more and the DMs would have no idea or simply not care. The one time they did setup my gear, because they transferred it to another boat over night, my long hose was kinked and an air bubble formed in it, possibly compromising the hose. I had to retire and replace it when I got home. I did have fun with them though.
The reason I'm giving them a poor rating, however, is their owner. The man is a total jerk and generally unpleasant. Most of us paid for 5 days of diving PLUS a blue hole dive. The blue hole dive was cancelled due to their boat being broken (not weather as some thought). This is understandable but:
1) They didn't communicate it well. They called one person at 9pm the night before. That person had to find as many others that were on the trip as possible and let them know to spread the word. The ones already asleep, did not know and only found out while waiting on the dock at 5:30am.
2) The owner did setup a trip for us the next day, if we were willing to take a small boat BUT 2 of our group could not go because there wasn't enough room BECAUSE HE BOOKED ADDITIONAL PEOPLE last minute!! Keep in mind, EVERYONE in our group already PAID well in advance! He had our money and so didn't care how he treated us. When one of our group called the owner, he was rude, dismissive, and blamed the person who had already payed for not making it clearer that he wanted to still go even though money had already changed hands.
3) As mentioned, we had already payed for 5 days of diving PLUS the blue hole. Since the blue hole was cancelled/moved, we obviously missed a day of regular diving. The owner REFUSED to refund us the money for the missed day of reef diving. He said that when the blue hole was cancelled, we should have gone to Hol Chan with the other half of our group. We didn't know that because no one mentioned it AND it is SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper to do Hol Chan. When we brought that up and asked would he have refunded the difference, he said no.
4) For both Hol Chan AND the Blue Hole, there are certain marine park fees that must be paid. We paid the fees to the dive shop in ADVANCE as well. The DMs did not know this and they had us bring the money to those trips. We complied because we had no choice. When we brought it up to the owner that we had paid those fees in advance, he said he didn't know what we were talking about.
5) When back on the docks between dives, when our groups wanted to change up boats and people so we could get a chance to dive with different people, the owner was yelling at us on the docks to just get on a boat. He was clearly annoyed that we were changing things around and wanted to just get on a boat and leave. We rented ALL of his boats ALL day. What did it matter? It's not like we were holding up additional business although I wouldn't be surprised if he was trying to book more people since he already had our money. He was just unpleasant and at this point we were just ignoring him.
6) Nitrox is 10 dollars a tank. I asked for 7 nitrox tanks over the course of the week. They gave me a bill for 14 tanks! If I had just blindly paid, they would have ripped me off for double the amount I used! Everyone had to double check their bills for nitrox because several people were charged much more than they were supposed to be.
7) Of the 47 divers that were with us, we had 2 minor accidents. Both divers had went to the local chamber as a precaution and ceased diving for the rest of the week. Now it's understandable that there may be no refund for the rest of the dives since they were technically last minute cancellations, however the owner would do nothing at all. No partial refund or even a tshirt as a sign of good faith or even being thankful that we sent 47 divers his way for a WEEK.
In the end, we did get all of our refunds but we had to do it through the hotel and their tour agency that booked the dives for us in the first place. They agreed that we had prepaid for everything and we let them deal with getting the money back from Amigos Del Mar for everything they ripped us off on. Fortunately, over all the trip was fun, the disorganization of Amigos del Mar and the jerk of an owner was just an annoying and unneeded inconvenience.
HORRIBLE OWNER TO DEAL WITH!!