Few years ago I took my AOWD at Aquarius Diving Club in Hurghada. Staff at the divecenter and boats always been nice, and still is, but this review goes directly to the management of the center. Story goes as follow:
At Aquarius homepage the offer 5 days of diving (10 dives), incl. lunch on the boat, and hotel incl. half board at 480 Euro pr. person. I wanted to book such a packed, but are told that price are now 580 Euro, since I'm only one person..I accept their offer if the add that I have free Nitrox on my dives, and they accept.
Day of my arrival, I do the check in at the dive center, and want to settle the payment. Now the price is 640 Euro...Why? They add 3% for paying with any kind of credit card...Not only Master Card, but also Visa..then they do the own exchange rate for change from Euro to Egypt pounds...ending up at 60 Euro. Payment made by Visa, takes the rate at the second that you do the transaction, even the ATM at the hotel did it at the normal rate, but not at Aquarius. My luck I brought enough cash to go to exchange office in town and got Euro to pay cash. I rather pay a exchange office their rate, since it's their core business than supporting crazy exchange rate at the diving center...Anyway, I paid 480 euro up front, since still wanted to if any other surprises should happened and they did.
1. day of diving, Nitrox was on the boat with 36% mix, OK. They told med that I must do a check dive, even I've just been diving in Sharm 2 weeks ago and showed my log book..You must do a check dive with us first day. Everybody must, for safety..OK, did and did diving with 4 others in my group. After lunch the asked me money for lunch even I had it included, and I should prove to the staff that it was included...
Next dive I got an unguided dive with 2 others divers and everything was OK.
2. day. No Nitrox since the guy that should make it was on vacation during Eid after ramada and they did not know when he would be back...Got regular airtanks but all of them with 180-190 bar. Didn't get any over 190 during the 5 days..and understood that some of the other dives didn't get it either. Did unguided dive with a guy thats been diving back in May '13 and his first dive. No check dive...Dive went very well but I was wandering. Once again the asked me for lunch and same scene over again even it was on the same boat.
3. day. No Nitrox, and had another guy at our unguided dive. He had about 200 logged dives, but no diving since the past 2 years. Not check dive.
Same story for the 4th and 5th day of diving. No Nitrox but had a guide on our last day. Surely we could join the guide groups, but all of us had done lots of dives, and been diving there before. Just wonder how the check dive system works or don't work...
On the 4th day we were asked if we would like to do a special trip to a wreck. It would be 2 deep dives and and extra cost of 35 Euro. Sure, I'm on. Can we get Nitrox? Yes, no problem. The trip was cancelled due to wind the same evening and we had local dives the last day of my diving but again without Nitrox. I think if 3 person asked for a Nitrox course the would be able to get the Nitrox, and did see other boats have plenty of Nitrox.
Check out day. Total is 590 Euro. The last 10 is an extra tax. OK. What about the 4 days without Nitrox that you offered me in first place. Once again I should prove that there was free Nitrox in my offer, even they made me the offer. Nitrox is 3 euro pr. tank makes it 24 Euro total. Now all the sorry excuses started..Got a call from the manager, that it was a good offer I had first place, and it was only Nitrox if available...and that because of problems going on in Cairo there was so many people in Hurghada since they could not visit Cairo and bla bla. Just do your planning ahead of time and stop with all your bad excuses.., it makes it as an unpleasant experience to dive at Aquarius..
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