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Posts posted by BDSC

  1. I have never bought trip insurance in my 21 years of dive travel. I had one trip going to Bonaire a few years ago that was canceled because the Miami airport closed down for two days during a hurricane. The airlines fully refunded our money and the resort, Buddy Dive, gave each of us a credit to use in the next 12 to 18 months or something like that. I have found that at least the dive resorts will work with people to see that they at least get a credit for another trip.


    I have probably saved enough money to take a couple of trips by not buying travel insurance.

  2. After all that, she came back to WP to find this thread so she knew where to report the fraud to the authorities, because the information was available here in one place vs trying to find out all the information herself in an unfamiliar country. That's reason enough.


    It's too bad she didn't find out in time that he was going to scam her but you can only hope a thread like this will keep someone else in the future from being cheated. When I was first getting into doing UW video and was asking questons on here, Luzansky emailed me several times that he would be glad to help me get stuff and give him a call. I guess I could have been scamed like others but someone I know on here warned me about him and said not to trust Mike and I respect his opinion so I never delt with him. Obviously that turned out to be the right decision.


    One can only hope that in time he can be charged with fraud or whatever and be arrested. He probably needs to spend some jail time with "Bubba".

  3. Excellent trip report Steve!


    Not too much I can add to that expect if any folks out there are prone to motion sickness, you need to mentally prepare yourself for the crossing. Now our crossing was really pretty smooth but there were several on board that even with them taking medication for it, they still suffered on the way. Once you are there it's no problem as the boat stays moored in a couple of different bays where there was little to no movement of the boat. I don't think anyone got sick on the return trip so that was good.


    I guess the only other thing of interest that I can add to this thread can be found here!


  4. Steve-O!


    Excellent shots! For some reason they look very familiar! Was I seeing the same things last week?


    Sorry I didn't say goodbye yesterday. I looked for you in the airport and then found out you were on the bus headed to the hotel. It was a real pleasure meeting you and spending the week with you. Hope to do it again sometime! You really know your stuff! I think Andrew is going to order the same system you have this week. He said he learned a lot from you and Andrew is an excellent photographer so that's saying something!



  5. You must stay at some really great resorts!


    This past spring we went and stayed in Cayman Brac at the Brac Reef Beach Resort. The resort is basically brand new. The cost for the week for the rooms, all three meals (and the food was truly outstanding), 17 dives, three alcoholic beverages per day, taxes and service charges (tips) was right at $1450 or so. The only thing not included in that price is tips for the dive crew. The diving there is valet service diving. You sit at the back of the boat and they bring your BC, cameras, etc. and you just slip everything on and fall in the water. At the end of the dive they take your tank/bc and switch to a new tank. They rinse your gear at the end of the day. So these guys work hard. They have a sheet in the dive office that "recommends" a tip for the week of $100 per diver for a weeks package. Now Kim and I did tip more than that because they do work really hard and are a great group. And like I said, tips for the restaurant and cleaning staff at the resort were included in the $1450 price and they even tell you tips are not expected. Again, we did leave extra for those folks but when you total it up it didn't come close to $400 per person.


    I guess it really boils down to a personal thing. I usually end up tipping on the high side but still it needs to be within reason.

  6. I'll be headed to Cocos with Steve this week along with some friends of ours. The four of us went out to dinner this past weekend and the very subject of how much to tip came up. I think with liveaboards it's hard to base your tip strictly on a percentage of the cost of the package. A 10% tip on a $4200 package would be $420! To me, that seems like a lot of money for a "tip".

  7. Don't know what your timing is but right now the Bracf Reef Reach Resort is running a great deal for the first 3 weeks of October. One pay one goes free. It works out to be about $950 pp and that includes 17 dives, all meals, room, taxes, service charges, etc. We were there in May and it was great! Food is wonderful as is the diving.


    We were on Little Cayman the last two years before that and stayed at the LCBR. That may be even better than their Brac operation! Again beautiful resort with some of the best food you will have anywhere. I think the diving in Little Cayman is the best in the Caribbean.


    You would not be disappointed in either location. It is a little easier flying into the Brac because the bigger jets can land there. Like Elmer said they only land the twin otters on Little Cayman but it's not a really big deal unless you have lots of luggage. We have always had our luggage make it on the same flight or at the very worse case, it arrived the next morning when we had the last flight in the previous day but it wasn't a problem.

  8. Hey Peter (or Steve for that matter),


    Is there a particular program or software that is used to do that opening scene where the plane flys from one spot to another? Sometimes folks will ask me where such-and-such is when I go diving so that may be a good way to show them when I do a video.


    By the way Steve, I may be sharing a skiff with you in the Cocos!

  9. If anyone is interested in going to the Brac Reef Beach Resort the first week of May, April 30th - May 7th, I can get you in on a pretty sweet deal. The price would be $1323 for the week based on d.o. in a regular room. The package includes 17 dives, all three meals, 3 drinks daily be it soda or alcoholic, and taxes, service charges, and transfers. The only thing not included is tips for the dive crew. I think this is usually priced at $1735 or something like that.


    Just so you will know, I make nothing at all off of this. We have a group of 16 going and the resort was completely full until two groups completely canceled on the resort so they have a lot of rooms available. I was talking to the reservation folks yesterday and they said if I could find more folks that would be great and even though you wouldn't be officially part of my group I could get you in on the same rate we are all paying.


    So if anyone is interested just let me know. Would love to meet more WP folks!

  10. A. Is there a respectable used market for this stuff? Offerings on Wetpixel look promising. Some of the gear is a bit long in the tooth, but reduced prices make them attractive.


    Buying used is a great way to go to get started. That's what I did when I first started out. I purchased a complete uw video system that was initally $4300 new and paid $1000 for it and it looked in almost new condition. That included the housing, camcorder, lights, and case. It wasn't an upper end unit but it served me quite well for close to two years until I upgraded to my current Light and Motion system. I also bought that used and you couldn't tell it from a new one. So I think used is a great way to go. You get so much more for your money. Lets face it, doing uw video for most people is a hobby within a hobby. It's not like there is a huge demand for this product, especially in today's economy. So when people go to sell their equipment, they usually take a pretty good hit on the price. I've seen products listed here and on ScubaBoard that will start out at one price and eventually will be sold for a much lower price if it gets sold at all.

  11. After talking with Steve, some friends and I have signed up for this trip. I have been reading the reports from the Captain of the Okeanos Aggressor and the summer months are definitely the time to go. What they are seeing is amazing. I think it would be great if we could get more Wetpixel members on the trip.


    Take a look and see what you think. This trip allows plenty of time to plan ahead.



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