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Hi There. New member to this board. I can already see I am going to be using this resource quite a bit in the future.
My wife and I are planning a relatively last minute trip the the PDC area for the first week in August. We are going to be staying at either Riu Palace Mexico or Viva Wyndham Azteca. I know these resorts have on-site dive operations, but from what I've been reading here we might have a better experience using one of the dive shops in PDC. So my questions are:
Are there any good dive shops in walking distance from either of these resorts?
If not walking distance, are there any that arrange transportation or would we have to take a taxi?
Do the dive shops have on-site gear storage so we don't have to lug our equipment back at forth?
I will not say anything bad about the hotel dive shops, but they tend to be a bit more expensive than the shops in town. They usually charge the same price for a 1 tank dive as the in town shops charge for a 2 tank dive. Those two hotels are located in an area called Playacar and it would take you maybe 5 minutes in a taxi to get to any shop in town and would cost about 50pesos/$4. Most dive shops are not able to enter into the big resorts because of the Taxi syndicate. Most of the in town dive shops should be able to store your gear for you. We wash, dry, and store any gear our clients want to leave with us.
Good luck on your search and I would try to stay away from the onsite dive op. You will have a much more personal and enjoyable experience with a smaller shop in town.
Thank you for the info. We actually booked our trip last night and will be staying at the Viva Wyndham Azteca. We can certainly deal with a 5 minute taxi ride. I will probably be contacting you through your website in the next couple of days about your packages. I think we are interested in the Playa/Cozumel/Cenotes combo.