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Best place to.....or would you....

Olympia, Washington
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Best place to.....or would you....

Best place to rental snorkel gear and/or rent vs. purchase for 9 day trip. Discuss.

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11. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

My husband and I bought snorkel gear after continually having issues with rental gear - mostly he Had a hard time finding a mask that was comfortable. Since buying our own gear, we check an extra bag when traveling, so it will take a long time to financially break even. But we like the quality and fit and find it much less of a hassle to have our own. Living in Indiana, we don't snorkel often (one trip a year if we are lucky). We figure that if we take good care of our equipment it will last for a very long time.

Mission Viejo...
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12. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

We own snorkel gear and have had it for over 10 years and it is still going strong. I need an Rx mask because the ones that rental places offer are for near-sighted and I am far-sighted. We got the fins on line and luckily they fit and they are awesome. We got the masks at a local dive shop and then ordered the Rx part through them. It is really important to get masks to fit properly or else you will have leaks and be endlessly fussing with them and not enjoying the magnificent underwater world. We also have wet suits that we got when the local dive shops run their sales--not too many tropical weight ones on offer here in the Seattle area, but they usually bring them in for the sales. I like having my own wet suit that no one else has worn! We go on a snorkel trip one or two times a year so investing in the equipment is definitely worth it to us.

Happy snorkeling!

Sally in Seattle

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13. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

I bought the set that Costco sells about five years ago and have been very pleased. I had previously rented from Snorkel Bob's and found the Costco set to be of superior quality.

Chicago, Illinois
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14. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

Here's a vote for buying your own mask, snorkel, and fins at home at a dive shop that will have quality things and someone who can help make sure your mask fits correctly ... IF you will be snorkeling most of your nine days ... and especially IF you will most likely be snorkeling on other trips. You will save money in the long run, save time by not having to go to a local dive shop twice (rental and return), be able to snorkel the first day you want to, and most importantly to me, be very familiar with your own stuff, especially your mask. Having a mask that doesn't fit your head correctly or leaks even a little bit is not fun at all.

All this, of course, has to be weighed (literally) against the hassle of the extra weight in your luggage and the extra space it occupies in your luggage, too, if you are trying to travel light. With airlines charging an extra $50 per luggage, that can add up.

For our family, since we try to snorkel most days on trips to Hawaii, the convenience of having our gear with us and knowing that we can completely trust it easily outweighs the extra weight and space on flights. If you were only going to snorkel 2-3 times at most, well, then, renting for most people would likely make more sense.

Island of Hawaii...
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for Hilo, Island of Hawaii
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15. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

Costco gets lots of this and that, and isn't like a store that stocks the same merchandise. It's highly unlikely they would have sets that are similar to what they sold five years ago. Maybe not two weeks ago. My experience with a lot of Costco stuff is it's like seconds, almost always breaks sooner than it ought to, with some lucky buys.

I got my mask at Kona Divers and was very pleased with the fit, but that too has been a while. A mask and snorkel barely weigh anything. It's the fins that are bulky and heavy. I just got some new fins at Walmart for 20 bucks. They are just as good as the $80 fins I got at a dive shop, but the mask I got at a dive shop is far far better than any from a set, ditto on the snorkel.

I would buy the mask and snorkel and either rent the fins or go to a store like Walmart or Target for them and maybe even donate them when you leave.

Edited: 8:08 am, May 28, 2013
16. Re: Best place to.....or would you....

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