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A few Coz questions

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by Big Tank 58, Feb 10, 2020.

  1. MPaul

    MPaul Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: San Jose, CA, USA
    1. get pesos From the ATM at the grocery store nearby (Chadraui I think?) and pay in the listed currency whenever possible. I find they give you a bad rate going either direction from the listed price anywhere you end up. Don’t use the US Dollar atms in the hotel or on the street, they have some absurd fees.

    2. The port closures were hit or miss, we only did 3 of our 4 planned diving days, and one was cut short in early January. The new harbor master appears to be a bit more quick to close than the previous one.

    3. Almost all of the food I had in Cozumel on my most recent trip sucked. It seems they are catering to a more conventional American style, maybe for the cruise ships? Either way I was totally disappointed with Hi tel Cozumel’s dinner options (breakfast was good, lunch is fine but cheap so whatever). The only dinner we ended up really liking was the ceviche at this little place on the beach south of hotel Cozumel, it’s on google maps as “Chac Kay grill” but I think the name may have been different on the sign. Either way you step down to covered outdoor patio seating and theres a full bar and some great seafood to be had there. The restaurant at casa Del Mar was our second favorite, but even that was just okay. I’ve heard nice things about lobster shack, but when we went they were out of lobster!?

    Anyway, have a great time! Let us know what places you like so next time I don’t have to suffer with sub par food!
  2. SandyRobinson

    SandyRobinson Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Moultrie, Georgia
    I recommend pesos for the best exchange rate and so the locals do not have to worry about exchange. Use your card at the Mega or Chedraui (the two Walmart type stores), or a bank.

    I like El Foco (several streets off the main drag) for local food and Guidos (on the main drag) for Italian food. Also Chalos Antojitos but I am not sure of their current location.

    Have a good time.
  3. cicopo

    cicopo Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Well here's a challenge to those who don't like the buffet food at All Inclusives. How would you plan a 5 day menu to satisfy people from just about every ethnic group & /or country around the world? They have to try to do it every day of the year and while sticking to a budget. For now I'm going across the street for a bowl of shrimp chevichi & then whatever else looks tasty
  4. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas Central Plains
    Why did you say that? Ok, no, you don't need Pesos in that you can pay much more for almost everything if you use USDs, and I think I did that the first several trips. Cozumel is so easy that I just didn't think or ask, but finally, someone told me. I felt dumb that it took me so long, but was happy to learn.

    You don't have to go to a grocery to find a safe ATM. You do need to ensure you use bank ATMs as there are non-bank ATMs there that will rip you off, but there are several in town - two right by the square near the ferry which seems to be a popular place that most visit. Of course, you need to let your bank know that you are going to use your cards in Mexico to prevent them from being canceled when you try, a mistake I have made twice now. :confused:

    That's good to read. I stayed there a few times and the food was okay then. Nothing to brag about, but better than paying for cabs on solo trips or walking further than I wanted to. Now I did not need Pesos really since I had booked my AI hotel plan and my diving in USDs.
  5. Charred

    Charred Barracuda

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Lehigh Valley
    I get pesos from my local bank before my trip. Then I don't have to play any games or seek out the right ATMs in order to not be ripped off.
    in too deep and Redfoot like this.
  6. mcohen1021

    mcohen1021 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Texas
    Overpay is objective. If you get a 3 peso better exchange rate was it worth trading currencies? Not to me..
    in too deep likes this.
  7. mediumone

    mediumone Manta Ray

    So you'd rather go to your local bank and let them rip you off instead?

    I've never found it to be much of a challenge to find a bank with ATM's in the foyer, or a free-standing ATM at one of the grocery stores.
    Basscat likes this.
  8. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas Central Plains
    What rate are they quoting today? Wells Fargo offers no fee conversion, but they had been offering lousy conversion rates. It looks like they have improved some. Now 17.55:1 while google quotes 18.67:1 which is not much of a hit. I don't know how much the shipping fee would affect that as I've never pursued it.

    If that were the case, I'd agree. Taxi drivers allow 10:1 so you're paying 87% more. Now on my trips where I book AI hotels in USDs and never did anything but eat, sleep, and dive, then I didn't use any taxis or spend extra money anywhere. Nowadays I chose to stay nearer the plaza, at a hotel that books in Pesos, eat at various places that allow poor rates, and enjoy more of Coz.
    neehooya likes this.
  9. ggunn

    ggunn ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Austin, TX, USA
    I am loathe to carry all the money I will need for a vacation in cash; I'd much rather get it as I need it. I withdraw a few days' worth at a time in pesos from a trusted ATM. DSFDF and YMMV.
    Basscat, SandyRobinson and DandyDon like this.
  10. jpm4osu

    jpm4osu Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Oklahoma
    I agree that using pesos are the best and right way to go. 1) you personally receive lower cost for your purchase and 2) the person or business does not have the hassle of exchanging the dollars and they do not lose on the exchange rate. This past Monday I used the CiBanco ATM and withdrew 9,000 pesos. Including all fees my bank debit was $484.00 for an exchange rate of 18.59. Reason I like CiBanco is the ATM is in English as well as Spanish, they do not try to use the lower exchange rate, and the card is not sucked into the machine. I have also used other banks as well.

    Great advice from Dandy Don on letting your bank and credit card company know of your travel plans. Many banks have a block on Mexico.

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