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Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

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Ottawa, Canada
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6,410 posts
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Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

This forum is full of message which really have not been fully thought out. Cozumel has just survived a Cat 4 hurricane, not a severe thunderstorm. From what I have been able to read on this and the Cozumelmycozumel forum it would appear that all the southern All Inclusives are out of order for now, AND that means that according to the listings here 1091 rooms are not currently available for your use just in that area. (Reef club, Allegro, Grand & Iberostar). It is not to say they were damaged or destroyed, it could be something as simple as the resorts restaurants were blown apart, which were mostly open air areas. If they can't feed you then you are not going to enjoy your stay. May I also point out that if the electricity has been off for long, the refridgerators were too, so new food must be obtained after the refridgerators gets back down to proper working temperatures. Food must come by boat, which again has been interrupted. I know that Antonio says Cozumel is open for business, and your tourist dollars are needed, but he did not pay for your vacation, you did. I agree that it is likely very possable for the cruise ship sector of the tourist market to go back and encounter a good experience, but I suspect that will not be possable for hotel guests in all areas.

I am not saying don't go, but I am suggesting that you will need to be very flexable in many ways, and you may suffer some inconveniences. Until all the people there have had time to fully evaluate the situation, and full communication is established I recommend taking a very careful look at alternatives. So far no one has posted a detailed message where they were able to inspect each property, and determine how soon it can be back to the way it was. The same applies to your tour operator, not only do they need to get accurate information, but they also need time to research alternatives, that includes AVAILABLE rooms & a similar quality hotel or resort, AND a flight to that destination that is convenient to you. If 1000 rooms were lost then 2000 people or more may need a new game plan. Considering that most of you spent a lot of time researching & planning this trip, there are bound to be let downs, but the tour provider didn't cause the hurricane, they are just being held responsable. They are a business, with expenses, and some of their costs in relocating you will need to be absorbed by them, the same probably applies to refunding you trip purchase.

It is very important to give the people there who make decisions about such things as to whether a resort can properly give guests the comfort, service & food they expect some time to do it. Not only do the facilities need a clean up, they likely need to dry out, to get that very musty smell gone, or even have mould cleaned up. Try to remember, the resorts want your tourist dollars as much as anybody does, but they also want you to recommend them, not bad mouth them after your stay.

Hopefully all of this will be worked out very quickly, but it sure won't happen instantly. Just food for thought at a time when things are happening a bit too fast for rational thinking. I hope I didn't upset anyone, but thought I should bring this up on the forum, that to me is what it is for. Larry

Ottawa, Canada
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6,410 posts
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1. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Just a little more to point out, not only does the food need to be brought in by boat from the mainland, so does the new furnature and almost all the building supplies. Cozumel being such a small island has limited natural resources.

Clearwater, FL
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21 reviews
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2. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Your points are valid, Cicopo, but I don't think there's a person out there who isn't seriously confronting this. That's why this message board is probably getting record numbers of hits. Everyone who goes to Cozumel this week and next surely knows that many services won't be available or will be subpar.

I kind of like the idea of going down there when things are more rustic than usual. Hell, that's what attracted me to Cozumel in the first place years ago.

And to many of us who are making this decision, it's not an easy matter to postpone it until later. This is pretty much my only chance this year. So I'm planning to go.

I personally think that there is going to be a great spirit in Cozumel for the next few weeks and that tourists will get a lot of attention and appreciation. I'd rather have it that way than just be one of the hordes of normal tourists in normal tourist conditions. I'm hoping to feel more a part of the island than ever before. We'll see!

MIlwaukee, WI
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3. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Cicopo, thank you for your insight! TampaJack, what a great attitude. Thanks for the optimism!

Ottawa, Canada
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6,410 posts
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4. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Trust me, I would love to go right now and offer my help, I survived the ice storm of 98 in Jan here without power for 13 days, the temperature got as low as -20 C. I know what a major weather event can do, but there are only so many rooms to go around. I have many skills that would be useful, but if I had to sleep in the streets I might be a little worn out after a couple of days there, IT'S HOT THIS TIME OF YEAR. I am only trying to make it clear to some of the travelers that if you paid for a vacation in a 3 or 4 star all inclusive resort you won't likely get what you paid for RIGHT NOW. I totally love Cozumel and all it's residents, and I most definately know how to rough it, but I also expect a good vacation when I pay for one. For some the cost of going to Cozumel, including taking their kids can be a very big hit to their yearly income, and I truely want them to experience what we regulars have. If they don't they won't consider it "one of the best vacations ever."

San Antonio, Texas
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5. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Thanks for your concern, however, it all depends on your perspective. I am not a 4-star individual. Fortunately I made my reservations further inland. All I need is a bed in a corner. What an exciting time to go down, roll up your sleeves, and lend help in whatever way our beloved inhabitants of Cozumel need it. I'm ready! This is not Miami, where the police are forced to rope things off and tell you to go away and mind your own business. This is our beloved Cozumel. The citizens of Cozumel need our help. That's better than any reward of a 4-star stay. If you are going for a 4-star experience, and are unwilling to take less for your vacation dollars, then our writer is right on the mark. Stay away and let others of us jump in there and lend a hand. Sooner or later, you will forget your 4-star experience you might have had. I will not forget this opportunity to serve my brothers and sisters.

Greg

Cozumel, Mexico
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600 posts
112 reviews
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6. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

You have some good points. From what I can see, things are going to be back to normal in a week. I am lucky becuase my place has electricity, water, and we are serving food. We were only down for half a day.Chedraui is open and we have been able to buy supplies for the restaurant. The only issue is we have not been able to buy ice, but we are making it here.

I looked at several of the large hotels today. Playa Azul is getting back to normal and I am sure in a week will be just fine. El Cozumeleno looks the same. El Presidente is up and running and they have thier own generators. I did see the Fiesta Americana and it appears the large palapa with the bar and restaurant is destroyed.I walked on the grounds of the Iberostar- it was quite strange as it was completely deserted with not a soul around. I could not see any damage to the actual units- all the palapa roofs where in place and no damage inside the units, but the grounds were a complete mess. They decided to shut down becuase they are half way through the summer and it is not worth rushing to complete repairs just in time for the fall which is slow, so they made a good business decision to shut down until December when the high season begins.

If you are planning to come and stay in a week or 2 weeks, I think it should be fine unless you had reservations for one of the large resorts in the south such as Iberostar or Occidental and then you will need to either change to a hotel downtown or in the north.

I have been really amazed at how fast they have been cleaning up the town of all the fallen trees etc. This was nothing like the chaos that I experienced in 1988 when gilbert hit. They recognize that it is important to get things back on track quickly. If you are looking to stay in Mid to last August or beyond, everything should be completely normal.

tom@hotelflamingo.com

Denver
3 posts
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7. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

At cozumelmycozumel.com there are several eye-witness reports from island residents. It's pretty informative and a site I've accessed many times. Anyone who thinks there won't be serious and lasting consequences from Emily obviously didn't explore Cozumel much as there was still visible damage from (I think) Gilbert in 1988. The people who return to Cozumel year after year will do it again because we love the island. It doesn't have to be perfect or five-star or whatever - Cozumel has its own unique charms. I'm going to the Reef Club Aug. 20 (as long as they are operational) and if I have to use my vacation to provide whatever type of support might be needed so be it. The people on Cozumel have made every one of my 8 trips there memorable, I would think a little inconvenience is the least I could do. The kind of people who will bad mouth their vacations are exactly the kind of people who should spend their vacation somewhere else.

Texas
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5 reviews
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8. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Great points..I think a lot of people are forgetting about the employees though..The resorts have insurance and with time will be back..What kind of castle do you think the staff live in?? They too,will have to rebuild their humble abodes..Us in the US ,Canada,UK have insurance,sick days,401k's,etc..I am sure most of the employees there,do not..If your house burned down,How quick would you recover?..On another note,My opinion,is that Coz does not have a true 4 or 5 star resort anyway..I would think the majority go primarily to Dive,Snorkel,or both..If a great beach destination or a great nightlife is your thing,Then Coz is not right for you anyway..Props to the Bro that is going to help out..

Ottawa, Canada
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9. Re: Scheduled to go now, take a deep breath & ponder this.

Morning 5 since the hit, and from what I can tell electricity is still out in the areas south of town. There are 2 photos showing the wind damage to the Grand at the Cozumelmycozumel web site that show that a lot of clean up work will be needed in that zone. On another question a former travel industry worker pointed out exactly what I feel has a lot to do with cancelling trips by trip providers. "You can't please everyone all the time" so some would go, enjoy their trip, but upon returning join those who didn't get exactly (or even more than) what they expected so they sue for their trip costs back. If you had a trip planned for the southern resort zone, they are closed, like it or not. There is no way they could clean up & fix up with you in the way, they could not guarantee your safety, or make you comfortable. It is going to involve chain saws, heavy equipment, and be very noisy. there might be many distractions for them & you and everything will be slowed by your being there, taking photos etc.

If you still want to go and can find a hotel to accept you, and you loose the all inclusive option don't worry, you can find many very good restaurants all over town that will be more than happy to treat you like a somebody, you will better understand the charm & warmth of Cozumel. Unfortunately you may have to lower your standards in a hotel from your original expectations (only a guess, but I suspect the higher end ones will be chosen first) but you will still be warmly welcomed & treated well. The best advice is if you want to go in the immediate future, and your flight still is going, start reading the reviews for some of the smaller properties, and find out where they are. There is no beach in town, a very small one at the edge of town, and the big beach area between the Reef Club & the Allegro which has several beach clubs, some of which also were damaged. There is also a small beach area near Dzul Ha, and there is all the beach south of the southern resorts, with more beach clubs, but taxi fare will be expensive. If you are the kind of person looking for your own private stretch of beach, this may be your opportunity.