Bottom Time Divers
Bottom Time Divers
5

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ColoDaleandLorie
Westminster, CO8 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2020
I dove with Raul Platas, owner and divemaster, of Bottom Time Divers in Cozumel Mexico this last week along with a friend that came down from the US for a week. The port was opened for limited numbers of divers due to the changes in quarantine. This trip I was one of two divers on the boat. All dive sites but a couple are open and we dove the southern dive sites.
Raul found quite a few interesting fish and creatures including flying gurnards, pipefish, sea slugs while our group saw quite a few turtles and many green and brown spotted eels. I took hundreds of photos.

Our dives were long and relaxing in part due to Raul's knowledge of the reefs and since the current was very slow.

I have dived with Raul before and I believe that he really likes to dive. I had not dived since the end of March so it was good to get back in the ocean. I think all of us were a bit rusty but we picked it back up quickly.

During this limited reopening, the dive op was required to take safety and health precautions for the operation including distancing, spraying down the boat with disinfectant (before and after diving), handling of diver regs and masks and handling of surface interval snacks and water. All of which he had to certify with local authorities. We felt safe being on the boat.

I have no complaints about this trip and will dive with Bottom Time Divers again.
Written June 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

CarolC10
Galveston, TX36 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
Bottom Time Divers is the best. We have been diving with Raul for several years. He is excellent with kids and helping them love the sport. I find Raul to be extremely knowledgeable but most importantly very safe. He always finds interesting things on the dive. You will not be disappointed when using Raul. His fast boat is FAST and perfect for the small group dive. We usually left at 8 am and where back by noon to the marina so able to enjoy the rest of the day. Thank you Raul for another great trip to Cozumel.
Written August 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WanderlustCO
Denver, CO143 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2012 • Couples
I am somewhat astounded that this is the first review of Bottom Time Divers on Tripadvisor but I’m sure that it won’t be their last. If you are looking for a dive outfit with great customer service, excellent safety, and a wonderful dive experience, then you should try Bottom Time Divers – you will not be disappointed. My wife and I travel to Cozumel approximately twice a year to dive and we have tried a number of different dive outfits over the past 10 years. Once we found Bottom Time Divers, we realized that we had no need to look any further. We typically stay at the Iberostar Cozumel and each morning we are picked up at the dock at 8:30 by Raul (dive master) and Manuel (boat captain) – always on time and usually a little early. They have a six pack boat that is comfortable and never crowded = we like to avoid the cattle boats as much as possible. If it is our first dive of the trip, then they take our gear and set everything up for us. I know many divers like to setup their own gear (and you have that option) but I’ve become so accustomed and comfortable with Raul setting up my gear that I don’t worry about it anymore. Once everyone is on the boat, Raul builds a consensus of which dive sites we will be going to that day – I’ve always had a say and I’ve never been disappointed. He also tailors the pre-dive briefing to the skill level of the divers on board and is accustomed to the skill-set of his previous/repeat customers. If there is a newbie on the boat or a new customer, then he will spend extra time going over the dive site depths, marine life to be seen, and his expectations of the dive. If he knows the divers, then the briefing is shortened – much appreciated since we know what to expect on most of the dives in Cozumel and have become very comfortable with Raul’s techniques.

Once we perform a backward roll entry into the water, we get the OK to descend. For those of you who have not been diving in Cozumel, this is where the wonder and fun begin. The deep blue hue of the deep ocean and the coral heads rising from the depths below are just amazing. The anticipation begins… During the dives, we see all manner of marine life – turtles, nurse sharks, angel fish, lionfish, sergeant majors, blue tangs, parrot fish, grouper, snapper, etc.. and stunning coral along with coral swim-throughs if the group is OK with them. Raul was the first and only dive master to ask me about my decompression time after a particularly long dive – refreshing and unexpected as no other dive master in Cozumel has paid any attention to my NDL (some other dive masters with other dive ops in Cozumel don’t seem to know what NDL means).

During the dives, there is always something new to be seen. On one particular wall dive, Raul was pointing out into the deep blue for the longest time – I have to admit that I felt he was seeing a nonexistent fish. Eventually, a black tip reef shark came into sight and swam along the wall for about 30 seconds – a not very common experience in Cozumel. Raul is great at spotting fish that don’t, at first glance, seem to be there. Once you reach 700 psi, Raul inflates his safety sausage and it is up for the mandatory 3 minute safety stop. It should be noted that only the buddy pair that has reached 700 psi needs to go up for the safety stop – all others can continue the dive until they also reach their 700 psi limit. Once the safety stop is completed, you ascend to the surface and Manuel is waiting to get you back in the boat. Manuel has never failed to be very close to us when we have broken the ocean surface.

After the first dive, there are towels and coats (if necessary) and fresh bottled water and snacks for the surface interval on a sandy beach. At times, we have anchored off shore to snorkel in a school of sardines – a great experience with the white sand below and the crystal clear blue water. We then take the second boat dive to a shallower depth than the first dive and have more great experiences.

Finally, Manuel and Raul take us back to the dock and drop us off at our hotel. We leave all of our gear with Raul to clean and dry so that it will be ready for the next day’s dives. Our gear is always well taken care of and is setup the next morning when we get back on to the boat.

The dive experience described above is typical of Raul and Bottom Time Divers. In the end, we highly recommend Bottom Time Divers and you should try them out for a great diving experience in Cozumel.
Written November 12, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jgosset
Brookfield, WI64 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2015 • Family
Went on a cruise with stop in Cozumel. We are a familly of five (kids 15,12,10). All of us were newly certified, however my husband and I had dove a few times in our past lives (before kids). I didn't want the overcrowded ship excursion dive package, so I found Raul. I am so thrilled we went with him. It was just the five of us. We got off the ship at 9 am and we were on the dive boat heading to first dive site within 20 minutes!!!! Raul gave us a great refresher talk while Manuel the boat captain drove. we were in the water in well under an hour from disembarkation. He was so organized! The personal sevice was amazing. Never did I feel safety was lacking. Watching my kids dive in the ocean for the first time was a wonderful experience, I was totally confident that Raul was watching over us and that we were safe. He also had wetsuits for us at no additional cost! I have never been more comfortable on a dive!!! I had emailed him our heights and weights and measurements ahead of time. Everything fit perfect !!!!! No equipment issues or ill fitting masks. I wish we could have stayed in Cozumel and went diving with Raul again. Our next vacation may be just that...a week with Raul.!!!!!
Written April 12, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JPTwins
Vancouver, Canada5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2015 • Family
This is our third time to Cozumel and third time diving with Raul and Bottom Time Divers. And it won't be our last! Raul provides a consistently great dive experience for his guests. He and his captain focus on safety and providing top notch customer service. Guests are treated to amazing dives, tailored to the skills and experience of the group. Between dives, there is plenty of fresh fruit, cold water and snacks. And, if you're diving with Raul for multiple days, your gear is rinsed, dried and set-up and ready for you when you arrive to begin another day's diving. Thanks, Raul - we'll be back!
Written January 14, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

scubadoodle
Princeton, NJ6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2014 • Couples
Hidden Gem in Cozumel. I have used Bottom Time Divers several times over the years and Raul has us spoiled. Very personal service and Raul shows you all the good stuff underwater. I can't imagine diving Cozumel with anyone else. I would recommend you bring your own gear though as with most places in mexico the rental equipment is not in top shape.
Written December 10, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Banon8
Dallas, TX5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
My wife and I have been going to Cozumel for over 30 years. Raul is the best dive master, and has the best dive operation, that I personally know on the island. We met and dove with him prior to Bottom Time, but have been diving exclusively with him ever since he started his own operation.

He runs with Captain Manuel on the 6 pack covered fast boat, Julieta. If you stay south of town at a place with a pier, they will pick you up at your pier at the agreed upon time, and he is very good at being on time.

A typical 2 tank morning dive goes like this. Meet the boat at your hotel pier at 8am (or whatever time is set). Bring your gear the first morning, or if you have arranged for rental gear he will have it on the boat. Raul greets you and assembles BCDs/Regs, then sorts out weights as the group talks about where to go. After that it is 15, maybe 20 mins, as the boat heads off to the chosen first site. This is the time that everyone gets to know each other, and Raul gets a feeling for experience levels in the group. Bottled water is available in the ice chest.

When we get to the first site, Raul does a briefing and ensures everyone is good with their gear. He may or may not enter first to check currents, depending on site and conditions, then we back roll entry as a group, descending together when everyone is good.

Cozumel is almost exclusively drift diving, so Raul leads the group and everyone stays “up current” from him. If requests have been made to see certain things at the site, Raul is very good at finding them, but in general he points out creatures of interest along the way. Turtles, nurse sharks, green and spotted morays, lobsters, crabs, southern and yellow stingrays, and misc reef fish are all common. Some creatures like splendid toad fish, sea horses, and bat fish are more site specific, so if you are a photographer looking for those make sure to mention that.

If the group is comfortable with it, when the first buddy team is low on air (700 psi or 50 bar) or bottom time, Raul sends his safety sausage to the surface on a line from depth. The low time buddy team then ascends under the sausage to do a safety stop, after which they surface by the sausage and are picked up by Manuel. The other buddy teams can continue the dive with Raul as their air/bottom time permits. Hence the name “Bottom Time Divers”.

When getting on the boat after a dive, weights, BCDs, and fins are handed up before going up the ladder. Manuel has towels and bottled water ready. Once everyone is back on the boat, we head for a close pier or beach for a 1 hour surface interval where we have fresh fruit, maybe bananas and mangos or watermelon, and a selection of cookies (I am partial to the Oreos).

It is uncommon, but if a rainstorm hits, the boat has a stash of storm jackets that are warm and keep the rain off.

After the surface interval we are off to the next site, typically only a few minutes away. Briefing, same surface entry, etc etc, then back on the boat and back to the hotel pier(s). If you brought a beer with you from the hotel and put it in the ice chest, now is the time to pop it open.

Here is one of my favorite things. If you are diving multiple days, Raul keeps your gear until the last day. He takes it home with him, rinses it, and hangs it to dry. The next morning when you meet the boat at your hotel pier your gear is already assembled on a tank and waiting for you, including a fresh smelling wetsuit!

A couple other things I will mention. Raul is excellent at recognizing when someone needs a little help, whether it is not enough weight, ear issues, or whatever, and is fast to react. He also does training for those looking to do checkout dives, a specialty, etc.

I can’t recommend him enough.
Written August 11, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sean L
25 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Couples
Absolutely incredible service. I am a Dive Master and have dived Cozumel on multiple occasions. Raul was by far our best experience. With great working equipment, phenomenal briefings and superbly chilled atmosphere. On our first two tank we went out with our boss Will who introduced us. We were spoilt to be sharing the boat alone with Captain Manual and DM Raul. On our second two tank dive my wife and I booked independently @ A GREAT PRICE. We had the boat to ourselves with DM Raul and Captain Manual. I loved the experience. We left early at 8am - got suited up and were spoilt to share our dive with Raul pointing out several missed findings which he later explained on our surface intervals whilst digging into incredible freshly cut mango, banana and watermelon. EXCELENTE!!
Written July 9, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alison T
Minneapolis, MN4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2015 • Couples
I'm a first time diver and just spent a fabulous week in Cozumel doing 'discovery diving' with Raul from Bottom Time Divers. I felt well trained and well taken care of by Raul and his dive instructor, Joaquin. After 5 two tank dives they turned me into a diver! I greatly enjoyed the camaraderie and intimacy of the small boat setting versus a large tourist boat. It is worth a few extra dollars to have the personal attention given on a small boat. We shared many laughs, were given numerous restaurant suggestions, and even went out for a few beers after diving! Raul is the hidden gem of Cozumel!
Written January 3, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

sadx2
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014
Raul offers small dive groups with excellent service. Don't do the tourist dive, dive with a local...dive with Raul.
Written December 17, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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