After spending a week in Tamarindo with truly some of the most beautiful and kind people I've ever encountered, it's so unfortunate that I had to try to work with Agua Rica! I've also never been inspired to leave a negative review before, but today seems more than appropriate.
I'm a seasoned warm and cold water diver (approximately 200 dives all over the world) and as such, I've learned to be wary of negative reviews for dive shops. Safety is always my top concern, followed closely by customer service. Although it's still low season in CR, all of the good/recommended tour dive operators have been booked the entire duration of our trip. It's our last day and I finally broke down to try to book with Agua Rica. I had no fewer that four people tell me that it was a mistake...these were mostly local people who really wouldn't say a negative thing about anyone! I should have listened to them!
The short story is, I was charged for a full day dive trip ($105USD) yet sadly, Claudio & his wife were having 'internet problems', didn't get my booking from yesterday at 2pm, and aren't going out today. I can actually understand this, but they proceeded to tell me that it wasn't their fault and that they could do nothing to refund my money. Not your fault? You are the owners of the dive shop! I'm leaving CR with zero dives and $105 fewer dollars in my pocket... and instead of being polite and trying to turn my experience around to a positive one (which would have been extremely easy to do-I'm on vacation!), they simply continued to say it wasn't their fault. I'm not sure how they've lasted in Tamarindo all these years, but I have a strong suspicion it's because they're really the only option when all of the ther companies from neighboring towns fill up daily.
It's really not that hard to provide good customer service. Perhaps Claudio & his wife could take a queue from some of the locals? I bet their business would pick up and they'd have the money to replace the faulty/old equipment that I've read so much about and saw in their shop. Why would I ever spend time under the water with someone who can't treat me well above the water?!?
Don't waste your money here unless you like to be manhandled. Lots of other much better options-just plan ahead!
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