Recent posts by BobFromCanada | Debbie's Caribbean Resort Reviews Forums

Bob, I had compiled (and kept updated) an extensive list of Cuban resorts & their electrical configurations along with a blurb about foreign voltage converters & adaptors. It was in the Cuba FAQ but disappeared when the "powers" reverted back to one Cuba forum rather than many area specific subforums.My Varadero restaurant list is still there, but the other is gone. I did post and offered the original in a new thread if the editors felt the info was relevant but since they didn’t reply, I presumed they didn’t want the info or deemed it irrelevant.

Leaving for Mexico tomorrow! I’ll check in when I get back.

That sounds like an extremely useful post. Hopefully the editor will read this, go back and find it (the compilation) and restore it.

Have a great trip.

…..When this website was revamped (to make it new and improved? Not!), a whole lot of stuff was "lost" including some stuff I had worked on for years which was in the FAQ section…….
I know the main website was revamped when they took it over from Debbie, but as far as I know they didn’t change or remove any of the posts in either of the forums. And that’s where the FAQ section would be. Can you identify what’s missing? Maybe their IT people can recover it or tell you where it got moved ….
….. The resort looks beautiful but I’m nervous as we’re not swingers. Does that even matter? ……. I guess it depends on your tolerance level. I saw the word ‘topless’ numerous times in the resort description, Sunquest describes it as recommended for ‘x-rated’ in their resort description and I read some reviews that indicated people were doing things that they should have got a room for ….

Other than that, the resort looks pretty nice. If you can live with the above, then go for it. If not, I’d pick another resort.

I dont know what is going on. It is listed as a direct flight.
we do stop in holguin on the way back. I will have to call Sunwing
In airline lingo, direct flight just means you don’t have to change planes. There can be a stop, unless they label it nonstop.
Well, I’ve never been interrogated. Maybe Toronto is less strict. When I’m over, they just punch some numbers into their computer and direct me to the cashier. Actually that hasn’t happened lately. When the airline only allows you 44 lbs, I’m restricted more by what I can carry ….

edit:

From www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/media/facts-faits/060-eng.html

What if I want to bring back more alcohol and tobacco?

Except for restricted items, you can bring back any amount of goods as long as you are willing to pay the duties and any provincial and territorial assessments that may apply.

Yes, those are the official words. I’m talking about in practice. Two x 0.750 litre makes 1.5 litres. I’ve never had them so much as bat an eyelash at that; making it three x 0.750 litres hasn’t been an issue (so far). In the good old days before the airlines got picky about luggage weight, we used to regularly bring back a case. Between the two of us we got six free and paid duty on the other six. It should be noted that we paid a small premium on duty since it was overproof rum. Can’t bring that on board now either since it’s classified as explosive ….

Unfortunately, most places in the Caribbean, the mix costs more than the liquor. Some places you can almost see the bartender wince when someone orders a coke ….

I’m sure this was discussed months ago but I can’t find it. If I bring back (to Canada) more rum than my limit what sort of duty can I expect to pay on each extra bottle? Assume the rum was $10CUC per bottle, is not available in Canada and I have receipts. My experience is that the 1.14 liter limit transfers to 2 bottles (each person). If you each have a third bottle (declared of course) you’ll likely get waved through. More than that you can expect to pay about $10/bottle. It doesn’t seem to matter what you paid for the liquor so receipts don’t help a lot. Yes, it hurts that the charges are MORE than you paid for the rum.

Oh, and things could get expensive if you go over your checked luggage weight allowance. $20/kg adds up quickly.

Why not ride the bus and save the taxi fare? Then spend it on rum.

Personally, I enjoy the bus missions for the airports to the hotels. I just stock up on parking lot cervezas and consider it to be part of the experience.

I agree 100%. We’ve met more nice people that way and it’s a great excuse to start a conversation. "Oh hi, you were on the bus with us. We’re from …."

If you do that, be sure to tell your tour company rep so that they’re not holding up the transfer bus waiting for you.

I just did a sample lookup for a Vancouver departure to Puerto Vallarta using Expedia (along with Sunwing, the so called guilty parties in this discussion). I specifically specified 8 days. The first hit wasn’t a Sunwing package, but Nolitours. The itinerary clearly shows all the information about flight and hotels. ‘Normal’ checkin time at a hotel is about 2-3 in the afternoon and checkout is about noon. Looking at the itinerary, it’s pretty obvious that your room will likely be about ready when you arrive from the airport but you’ll be without a room from noon on the 29th until 2:25 am on the 30th when your flight leaves …..
I will admit that I asked for 8 days and might expect 8 nights in the hotel. The description is somewhat nebulous to say the least. Again, the onus is on the buyer to ensure that what he is buying matches what he is expecting. Attachments:

The booking agency in this quoted case was Expedia. Note that the booking outfits I ‘normally’ use state the number of nights included in the hotel in a big square box; Expedia doesn’t seem to do this. Anyhow, I did a trial booking, asking for 8 days to the same destination and got a number of hits. Sunwing wasn’t the only one….. Nolitours also popped out. The description showed 8 days, but when I looked carefully at the hotel checkin/checkout dates and the flight schedules, it was immediately obvious that this was the same situation. Clearly, the onus is on the traveler to make sure he is buying what he thinks he is, especially when the departure times are weird.

edit: suggestion to Expedia. When this situation occurs, it might be a good idea to state it up front.

Far be it from me to defend Sunwing, but ….
They all sell 8 day/7 night packages. In this case the timing was very inconvenient. If I read the story correctly, those passengers left the west coast late Friday night/early Saturday morning and arrived at the hotel Saturday morning and checked in early. They spent Sat, Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed, Thur, and Fri nights in their hotel room (7 nights) and had to check out at the normal noon on Saturday. Unfortunately, their flight didn’t leave until 3 am Sunday morning. Given that the tour companies want you at the airport about three hours ahead of the flight, that means the bus to the airport would leave about 11:30 or midnight. So even if you got the room for the 8th night, you would likely get about 2 hours sleep. In this case it’s just a worst case late departure scenario. Those passengers made the assumption that 8 days also meant 8 nights in the hotel. Now, if the package was advertised as 8 nights that would be a totally different story. Personally, if I’d booked that package I would be expecting a long time (actually an extra days vacation from what you normally get) without access to my room. I’d have dinner, go to the night’s entertainment, have a few drinks, maybe a midnight snack and show up at the lobby in time to catch the bus. Actually, I’ve done this. It wasn’t all that unpleasant, but I made it work.

…… I haven’t tried out the Sony site yet, but I was wondering if they have books in epub format? …..

Yes, I’ve downloaded a few from the Sony site. One thing I have noticed that a lot turn out ‘unavailable’ for my location.

It’s OK. I’m not taking issue with you. I totally agree that the pricing is totally weird. ‘Normally’ a one way ticket is almost as much as round trip one. Occasionally you run into pricing anomalies. Like a few years ago when I found a two week AI package to a hotel that was less than the one week package. Same hotel, same flight and same departure date. I quickly booked before someone changed their mind ….

edit: The idea of arriving at one city and departing from another one is intriguing. I’d still rather prebook both flights before I left, just to guarantee the pricing. On-line booking prices tend to vary like the wind.

True. I’ll go with ‘recommended’. Cuba obviously marches to the tune of a different drummer. However, since most of us are likely going to be on a package tour, it shouldn’t be an issue. For the rest, as you say, you’re not likely to be staying permanently, so for the sake of saving a few $, why take the chance?

Nolitours has the extra choices. Just looked at 12 and 15 day trips through itravel2000.com
Thanks. I missed those. I guess because I was looking for the longer ones (like 3-4 weeks).

Most countries require proof of ongoing transportation. Otherwise it looks like you are planning on staying and they don’t take too kindly to that.

….. Sorry to hear some of you are having trouble getting hold of ereaders for Christmas. I know I lucked out
Based on my experiences, if you are even thinking about it and the retailer has one in stock, grab it. It seems that these things are the seasons’ hot gift this year. ;D
Well, a sale price doesn’t do me much good when they (WalMart) don’t have any. They keep telling me they’re ‘en route’. Seems the dog and pony team got lost in a snowdrift somewhere. So I decided to pay the extra and went to Chapters. Also out of stock. Next stop, Future Shop to look at the Sony. Also out of stock on all but the most expensive model 650 Touch. And there weren’t many on the shelf and two disappeared while I was looking. I caved and I’ll now have one to put under the tree. Oh, the salesguy hinted that at the rate they were disappearing, they would be all gone in a few hours and there were no more to be had until after Christmas. And I’d already made the purchase …..

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