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Dive Shop recommendations #68989
05/26/03 09:18 PM
05/26/03 09:18 PM
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 10
humpback Offline OP
humpback  Offline OP
We will be staying at Casa Tortuga 1 1/2 miles south of San Pedro for a week in June. 6 Divers. We stayed there a year and a half ago and were not particularly impressed with the dive operation we used. Would love some specific comments on dive operations near San Pedro or south. We have 2 brand new divers - just certified. Thanks

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68990
05/26/03 09:24 PM
05/26/03 09:24 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,880
seashell Offline
seashell  Offline
You can't go wrong with Amigo's del Mar. They will pick you up at your dock, as will most if not all of the ops.

A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68991
05/26/03 11:12 PM
05/26/03 11:12 PM
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 15
San Francisco Bay Area
scubachic Offline
scubachic  Offline
Ditto Amigos Del Mar. If you look at my post "Restaurant Review and Short Trip Report" that I just posted, I gave a lot of details about Amigo Del Mar from my experience - I thought they were fabulous and very accomodating as far as picking you up!

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68992
05/27/03 11:56 AM
05/27/03 11:56 AM
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 10
MisplacedTexan Offline
MisplacedTexan  Offline
Just returned from our trip. We did diving with Amigos Del Mar for the Blue Hole trip, and barrier reef diving with Protech Belize. We used Nitrox for the Blue Hole trip (28% O2 for the Blue Hole dive and 32% O2 for the other 2 dives on that trip), and had a great excursion. We were the only ones diving Nitrox on the Blue Hole trip, and the extra tanks suspended from the boat at the 20 foot safety stop were air also. We have dive computers that allow up to three different O2/N2 mixes to be programmed before the dive, and allow switching of gas mixtures during the dive. If you plan to use Nitrox diving with Amigos Del Mar, you may want to rent a dive computer that allows at least 2 different )O2/N2 mixes to be programmed in in case you have to switch during the dive. More trip report stuff later.

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68993
05/27/03 12:16 PM
05/27/03 12:16 PM
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 11
Santa Barbara, CA
susano Offline
susano  Offline
I am newly certified and had great experiences with Ramon's dive shop. I don't like being negative, but in the interest in safety I would have to steer folks away from Aqua Dives. The equipment they rented me was very substandard, and was actually dangerous.

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68994
05/27/03 12:48 PM
05/27/03 12:48 PM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 40
Indpls., In
scubatsa Offline
scubatsa  Offline
Our favorite is Ambergris Divers and they're South of S.P. (near Xanadu)

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68995
05/29/03 06:34 AM
05/29/03 06:34 AM
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 476
Marie Offline
Marie  Offline
We like Bottom Time.

Re: Dive Shop recommendations #68996
05/29/03 11:15 AM
05/29/03 11:15 AM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 180
River Shark Offline
River Shark  Offline
Keep in mind that a lot of "farming out" goes on on AC. This is where the smaller shops work together when they don't have enough divers for a particular dive (ie. night dives or Blue Hole/Turneffe). They set you up with another shop which has enough divers and equipment for that dive. This enables the samller shops to compete with the largest one. And unless you set up with the largest dive operator, Amigos Del Mar this can and will happen. Amigos told me they never "farm people out" to other dive shops. I don't think any of the other dive shops can say that.

In searching for a dive operator it is necessary to ask people who have dived with more than one dive shop - so they have something to compare one from another. Otherwise all you get is people who have "pet" shops that they use and no other shop to compare theirs to.

That being said - I dived with Hustler and Amigos Del Mar.

While Hustler did not have their large boats available for long trips such as the Blue Hole, they did a great job on the local diving just off shore. Everitt, our divemaster was excellent. He took my wife by the hand and made her dive very enjoyable by showing her things she would never have seen otherwise. For the long trips right now they "farm people out" to Aqua Divers. That sometimes does not work well as our freind Eracsder found out when Aqua Divers called him at 10PM to tell him his trip was off. Needless to say he was PISSED OFF, both with Hustler and Aqua Divers - and you know I can't blame him for being pissed. When Hustler offered to set up my Blue Hole dive I graciously declined and went to Amigos and Eracsder joined me.
Amigos Del Mar - There's a reason that so many people praise their work. They are the best on the island - most proffessional, well equipped, with the largest boat and largest group of divemasters on the island. They do not take saftey for granted and they make you feel that your safety is their #1 concern.
In doing the Blue Hole and Turneffe with them, I was completely at ease and when the diving was done they had lots of refreshments for us, to make the trip back to AC more enjoyable. They had candy bars and snacks, pop, water, beer, and rum punch (panty rippers).
There is usually one dive shop that stands head and shoulders above the rest. Here on AC it is Amigos.
What more can I say?

The Shark

"We're gonna need a bigger boat" - Brody

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