Reservation Policies

PAYMENTS

  • A $100 per person deposit is required in order to confirm a reservation.
  • The final balance is due 45 days prior to arrival date.
  • Reservations are not confirmed until proper payment is received.
  • Reservations made within 45 days of arrival require full payment at time of reservation.

FORMS OF PAYMENT

All payments must be made in US currency. Checks must be drawn on US banks, made payable to Travel Resource Solutions and mailed to:

Travel Resource Solutions
Attn: Dive Vacations
P.O. Box 14486
Ft Lauderdale, FL 33302

We reserve the right to electronically debit your account if a check comes back dishonored, plus a $25.00 processing fee and applicable tax. The use of a check is your acceptance of this agreement and its terms. If wiring payment, the sender must pay for any bank transfer fees.
MasterCard and Visa are accepted for reservation payments and will be accepted at all resorts for incidental payments. Please be advised that in most destinations American Express will NOT be accepted in the local shops. If you are paying your deposit by credit card, your card will be automatically charged for final payment on the due date. Please note that credit card charges will come through in the name of “TRC Travel Center or Agent Fee TRC Travel ” depending in the type of credit card used.

GROUP RESERVATIONS

Special deposit, payment and cancellation policies apply to groups. Please inquire.

CANCELLATIONS/REFUNDS

  • Cancellation made 46 days or more prior to arrival will receive a full refund less a $25.00 per person cancellation fee.
  • Cancellations made 45 – 31 days of arrival will forfeit the deposit.
  • Cancellations 30 days or less, no-shows or premature departure: no refunds. Full amount is forfeit.
  • The unused portion of any reservation is non-transferable and not refundable.
  • Dive Vacations by Occidental is not responsible for missed or delayed flights. We highly recommend the purchase of trip insurance!

RE-BOOKING AND/OR CHANGE IN RESERVATION FEE

A $25.00 per person fee will be assessed for any changes made to reservations once vouchers and documents have been issued. Change fees are in addition to any applicable penalties as the original date is being cancelled.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Everyone, including children of any age must have a valid passport. No visas are required for entry into any of the Dive Vacations destinations for US or Canadian citizens. For other nationalities, it is your responsibility to ensure your own visa requirements, and no refunds will be awarded for customers denied access for lack of a proper visa. For travelers going to Costa Rica: All passports must have at least six months remaining before expiration at time of departure from Costa Rica.

TRAVELING WITH MINOR CHILDREN

Some countries require the parent(s) of minor children (under 16) to present copies of documents associated with the childs Passport Application in addition to the Passport itself. To prevent any issues with immigration, it is recommended that parents travel with a copy of their childs birth certificate, and refer to http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/passports/under-16.html for any additional documentation requirements.

INSURANCE

We are not responsible for compensating or crediting any traveler for any loss incurred due to delays or cancellations. Trip interruption/cancellation insurance is your only protection. We highly recommend you purchase trip insurance from our trusted provider via. We also encourage all divers to have Dan Master Insurance Plans.

PRE-TRIP PLANNING

PACKING CONSIDERATIONS

Casual attire is the norm at all of our resorts. Evening clothes are casual to casual nice. All menu style restaurants require men to wear long pants and shirts. No beachwear will be allowed. Beachwear (dry) is accepted at all buffet restaurants. Shoes or sandals are always required. All of our guest rooms are furnished with air conditioning, ceiling fan, stocked mini-fridge, satellite TV, full bath with bath toiletries, hair dryer, alarm clock/radio, telephone with data port, Wi-Fi access (extra cost), in-room safe, iron and ironing board, coffee maker and cribs & extra beds upon request. Beach towels are provided at the pool.

Note on Sunscreen: Every year between 4,000 and 6,000 tons of sunscreen washes off of tourists during their vacations. This sunscreen contains chemicals and oils that are harmful to the marine ecosystem, particularly coral reefs. All over the Caribbean, the use of biodegradable sunblock and sunscreen is starting to be required for entry into the waters, scuba diving or snorkeling tours. In Mexico, famous locales such as Xcaret, Xel-Ha, Garrafon Park, Chankanaab Park, and the protected marine park in Cozumel all consider the use of biodegradable sunscreen mandatory, and any other type of sun products are confiscated upon entry to their facilities. Travelers to any of the Occidental Dive Vacation destinations are urged to only travel with biodegradable sunblock as a precaution and aide to the environment. There are multiple brands readily available at most drugstores and superstores.

Airline luggage restrictions are constantly changing. Be sure to check your airline's web site(s) for the most current information on baggage allowances and restrictions. For most international flights, any luggage over 50 pounds will have a surcharge and you could potentially be told to remove something from the bag. In most cases luggage over 70 pounds will not be accepted. Domestic flights especially those booked independently of the international flight will most likely have other allowances and restrictions. Best advice is travel light!

In the unlikely event you arrive at your destination without your luggage, please make sure you have packed your “trip essentials” in your carry-on bag, such as your C-Card for diving or Referral Papers for Dive Courses, a pair of shorts, bathing suit, dive mask, medicine, sunglasses or anything you consider necessary to begin enjoying your stay from the moment you arrive. Passengers traveling on local air carriers should keep in mind that the overhead compartments are likely to be very small and most carry-on luggage will need to be checked curb side before boarding the plane.

IF DIVING

You will need proof of scuba certification. Unfortunately the dive operators are unable to accommodate divers without proof of certification, so DON’T FORGET YOUR CERTIFCATION CARD! For divers doing their training dives, remember to bring your referral form or signed log book.

DO NOT FORGET TO PACK YOUR HOTEL AND DIVE VOUCHERS! We strongly advise that you carry these with you as you will need to present the vouchers upon check in at the resort and at the dive shop! Please make sure you have a separate voucher for the hotel and for the diving.

CHILDREN

All of the resort with the exception of the Grand Papagayo and the Royal Hideaway (which are adults’ only properties) offer kids programs for children ages 4 – 12. Babysitting is not provided. Babysitting is not included in your package, but can be arranged by the resorts for an additional charge with a minimum of 24 hours advance notice. Cribs and extra beds are available upon request with advance notice.

ARRIVING AT YOUR DESTINATION

GETTING TO YOUR RESORT

Unless you have pre purchased transfers to your hotel, you will need to proceed to the taxi stand to transfer to your hotel. Approximate distance to resorts is:

    • Aruba: Grand Aruba 10 minutes from the airport.
    • Costa Rica: Grand Papagayo or Allegro Papagayo: 30 minutes from the airport.
    • Cozumel: Grand Cozumel & Allegro Cozumel: 25 minutes from the airport, or 15 minutes from ferry terminal if arriving from Playacar.
    • Dominican Republic: Grand Punta Cana 15 minutes from the airport.
    • Mainland Mexico: Grand Xcaret 60 minutes; Allegro Playacar 45 minutes from the airport.

ARRIVING AT THE RESORT

Check in time is 3:00 p.m. Please carry with you the prepaid hotel and dive vouchers that are provided and e-mailed to after your final payment has been received by Dive Vacations. Present the Hotel Voucher to the front desk upon check in and the Dive Voucher to the dive shop upon dive registration.

CHECK IN FOR DIVING

Immediately after checking into your accommodations please call or go check-in at the dive shop. If you arrive after shop hours be sure to check in early the following morning if you are diving the first day. You should also reconfirm your diving schedule for the week. Please remember to take with your C Card and prepaid diving voucher with you.

  • Aruba: Unique Sports: (297) 586-0096; Unique Sports is located on Palm Beach at the Radisson Resort. It does not have a sales desk at the Resort, however you can easily walk 5 minutes south on the beach to the dive center or call them and request a free van transfer to their dock.
  • Costa Rica: Rocket Frog Divers (506)2670-1589 at the Allegro Papagayo and Grand Papagayo. Please note that Rocket Frog Divers is an independent operator and does not have a presence at the Resorts. The on-site operator at both properties, Charlie’s Adventures, is a reputable operation but we believe our guests would be better overall diving experience diving with Rocket Frog Divers.
  • Cozumel: Pro Dive Mexico 872-9770 ext. 8241 located on the beach at the Allegro and Grand Cozumel.
  • Dominican Republic: Pro Dive Mexico is located on the beach at the water sports center.
  • Mainland Mexico: Pro Dive Mexico 984 745 0763 is located on the south side of the Royal Hideaway, which is immediately adjacent to the Allegro Playacar. Pro Dive Mexico representatives can be found at the activity center at the Allegro pool, or you can simply walk along the beachfront to the dive center. Guests staying at the Grand Xcaret will be provided with free transfers by van on each dive way. Pro Dive Mexico representatives can be found at the Grand Xcaret Beach Club at the poolside sports desks.

GYM & FITNESS FACILITIES

All resorts offer organizer activities such as water polo or aerobics by the pool. In addition, all resorts offer a gym/fitness center with the exception of the Allegro Papagayo. All resorts with the exception of the Allegro Papagayo have tennis courts available free of charge.

TOUR DESK

All resorts offer a tour and excursion desk to assist you with all non-diving optional tours (not included in the package price.) For questions about your dive package please meet with the dive operation directly.

RETAIL STORES

Clothing and souvenir shops can be found on all properties as well as health and beauty aids.

WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS

All resorts offer fee based wireless internet access either in the main lobby or in the rooms and lobby. Our recommendation is that you use the holiday as an opportunity to “disconnect” if at all possible. Fees vary between each property and there are daily rates and hourly rates for their internet cafés or wireless services.

CURRENCY

For purposes of paying taxis or shopping outside the resorts, small denomination US dollars will generally be accepted. However if you do plan to exchange currency, remember that currency conversion rates can and will change at any time! For the most recent exchange rates please visit http://www.xe.com

  • Aruba Currency: American dollars are accepted virtually everywhere at a decent exchange rate. If you have U.S. dollars, there is no need to change money into the local currency, the Aruban florin. The exchange rate given in shops is about 1.79 florins to the dollar.
  • Costa Rica Currency: The local currency is colón(es). The rate of change is about 500 colones for 1 US dollar. The use of US dollars is quite common; in the tourist setting, almost everything is priced in dollars (but sometimes prices are cheaper in colones). Money exchange is provided at most banks, however it is recommended to do so at the state banks, especially the Banco Nacional, since they have lower rates. Money exchange service at the airport is quite expensive.
  • Dominican Republic Currency: The peso is the legal tender with the prevailing exchange rate between the peso and the most frequently traded currency, the U.S. dollar, RD$40 = $1 US. (Inversely stated, that means that 1 peso = approximately $ .02 US.) Euros, British pounds, and Canadian dollars are less frequently traded, and in most cases, are accepted only at banks and at very large hotels.
  • Mexico Currency: The currency of Mexico is the peso (MXN), divided into 100 centavos. The symbol for pesos is the same as for US dollars, which can be slightly confusing. Prices in dollars (in tourist areas) are labeled "US$" or sport an S with a double stroke. The current exchange rate hovers around $13 MXN to $1 USD. US dollars are widely accepted in tourist locales elsewhere. Small-denomination bills and coins are hard to come by, so start collecting them early in your trip. In general, avoid carrying the U.S. $100 bill, the bill most commonly counterfeited in Mexico and, therefore, the most difficult to exchange, especially in smaller towns.

TIME ZONES

  • Aruba, Dominican Republic: Atlantic Standard Time year-round (1 hour ahead of Eastern Standard Time areas such as New York and Florida.) Aruba and the Dominican Republic do not use daylight savings time, so from April through October, Aruba and the Dominica Republic are on the same time as New York and Florida.
  • Costa Rica: Central Standard Time year-round (same as Chicago and St. Louis), 6 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time. Costa Rica does not observe daylight saving time, so the time difference is an additional hour April through October.
  • Mexico: Central Standard Time (same as Chicago and St. Louis), 6 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time. All of Mexico observes daylight saving time.

MEDICAL EMERGENCIES

Medical assistance is either available or on call 24 hours a day at all properties except the Grand Papagayo, which is within close distance of the local hospital

DEPARTURES

Check out time at all the resorts is 12:00 noon.

  • Aruba Departures: For United States bound passengers, departure tax is $36.75 and is included in the ticket price. For other international bound passengers the departure taxi is $33.50 USD.
  • Costa Rica Departures: The departure tax will not be included in your ticket and $29.00 USD is due at departure. Although you can pay the airport exit tax with a credit card, it will be charged as a cash advance. It is best to pay the airport tax in cash, either dollars or colones. If you have time when you arrive you can pre-purchase your departure tax and be all set to depart. This is especially helpful if you have an early morning flight.
  • Mexico Departures: A departure tax of 180 pesos (roughly $18 USD or $21 Canadian) which is nearly always included in your ticket.
  • Dominican Republic Departures: Most tourists will only need to pay for a tourist card that is issued upon arrival at the airport. The cost for the tourist card is US$10 and it will be valid for 30 days. The departure tax of $20 USD is nearly always included in your airline ticket.