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Cozumel Barhop trip/Hotel B - Live - 5/16-5/19


Saint Greg
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This is the free trip I won in the Cozumel Barhop blog competition. Here is my Cozumel Barhop blog for those who missed it.

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/cozumel-bar-hop-tour/

 

 

Thank you to all who voted for me and thank you Cozumel Barhop.

 

https://cozumelbarhop.com/

 

Here are my other trip reports for anyone who missed them and wishes to catch up.

 

These are newest to oldest:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/breezy-like-sunday-morning/

 

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/seven-days-of-freedom/

 

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/i-will-triumph/

 

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/leaving-the-elation/

 

 

https://saintgregtravel.com/r1-my-intro-to-cruising/

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I normally fly out of DFW, but I didn't like the flight options for Cozumel. Most of them either got in really late or had really long layovers. The ones that got in at a decent time left really early and connected through Houston. I like to fly direct so I just picked a direct flight out of Houston. It also ended up being the cheapest option of all of the trips under 10 hours with a base price of $299 on United Airlines.

 

I have a friend/former room mate who has been wanting to go on a cruise for a couple of years now. Every time I cruise he wants me to send him pictures (He doesn't know about Saint Greg). He wanted to go with me I found him the same flight and hotel in a bundle. I want to say it was on travelocity. He got the same flight. The same hotel for three nights with an ocean view room and breakfast included for $744. That was for basic economy on the flight. An upgrade to economy like I had would've been another $90.

 

The plan is to meet in Houston on Saturday. Probably park at the parking spot or park n fly. Their prices are cheap compared to Dallas. They're like $5-7/day and I think those two are more like $10-15/day in Dallas. Then stay at one of the hotels within walking distance of the parking lot and take the shuttle to the airport in the morning. Our flight is at 10:20 so the plan would be to get there around 8am. Our flight was originally supposed to get in at noon but now it's 12:40.

 

The Hotel is the Hotel B. It looks nice. It looks like you can snorkel right from the hotel by the pool. I never have tried the snorkeling. I don't like to have to carry a bunch of stuff off of the ship. When you're solo, you never have anyone around to watch things for you. A great example was last month in Cancun when the hostess seated me in the buffet. I went into the buffet, grabbed a dessert, and returned within 5 minutes of being seated and the hostess was about to give my table to someone else. This is also why I had my flip flops on when I tore them in the lazy river in case anyone was wondering. No place to put them. Getting back on topic since snorkeling is so convenient to the hotel this time, I ordered a full face snorkel mask for like $20 on amazon. It should be delivered today. I picked this one because of the price and it had a 4.5* average with over 1,500 reviews.

 

Other than that I'm not exactly sure what all we are going to get into. I know there's supposed to be a barhop tour but I haven't been given the specifics yet. I'm thinking it's going to be Tuesday because they don't have Monday on their schedule. My friend has a pretty ambitious list of things he wants to do. I don't think there's going to be time to do all of it but I know Parasailing, snuba, snorkeling with sea turtles, and a glass bottom boat are all on his list. I wish we had more time. I would have liked to have added more days but I barely got what I did because my boss is taking vacation the same week. While I know he's been to Mexico a lot and he's fluent in Spanish and all that, it's clear my friend has never done anything quite like this before.

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I can officially say my time off is approved and I am booked at the Barcelo Maya Riviera June 20-28. Barcelo Maya Riviera is still fairly new. It opened just before Covid hit December 15, 2019. It is considered to be the high end property at the Barcelo Grand Resort which is located right between Tulum and Playa Del Carmen. It's a 30 minute ride to either city. I will almost definitely take this as an opportunity to check out the Mayan Ruins at Tulum. It's a long excursion from Cozumel and it would've been a long excursion from Planet Hollywood as well.

 

Barcelo Maya Riviera is adults only and the great thing about it is it's located on a mile long beach with five other Barcelo Resorts. Anyone staying at the Riviera has access to all six resorts but only people staying at the Riviera have access to the Riviera. Well adults at other resorts can book Riviera restaurants for a $30pp upcharge. I don't expect there to be much of that. The $20 charge and adults only rule kept most of the family side people from booking the adult scene restaurants at Planet Hollywood.

 

The various resorts have a dolphin show, water park, thrill park, mini golf, bowling alley, night club, 24 hour sports bar. They all have their own shows so you can pick which one you want to see each evening. I have heard with the mile long beach you have different types of water from smooth to rocky and you can snorkel with sea turtles at the rocky part in the mornings. There are also three cenotes directly across the street from the Riviera. 

 

Despite it being considered the high end resort it was only about $100 or so more to stay at the Riviera vs. the other hotels. Actually the Palace was the most expensive which is considered the second highest tier resort. Anyone staying at the Palace has access to all of the resorts except for Riviera. I think the base price at the Palace was $800 more for my week. All of the rooms at the Riviera include a jacuzzi on the balcony so that prompted me to pay the additional $282 upcharge for an ocean view room. That upgrade and the $45 roundtrip airport transportation upgrade brings the total for this trip to $75 less than I paid for the Planet Hollywood Adult Scene swim out room in April.

 

 

 

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21 minutes ago, blarko said:

Did the prize package not include airfare?

 

It did for me. Airfare and hotel for me. A friend of mine booked the same trip that's what the prices are based on.

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, blarko said:

Woohoo!!! So we’re going on two vacations?? 

 

Yeah. Cozumel this weekend/next week. Then the Barcelo Maya Riviera about a month after I get back.

 

Edited by Saint Greg
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I have a driver down there that I can put you in touch with, if you want to head to some of the off the beaten path type of places... I've been trying to put together a vacation down there, but all the flights that leave from Atlanta stop in Houston, and depart here at 7:00 am... 

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Greg, you can snorkel right from the hotel.  It's very easy.  

Years ago I stayed at this hotel, but at the time it was called the Fontan.  It's pretty basic but was always kept very clean and in good working order.

I liked it a lot since it was fairly low key.

It won't be like the AI you stayed in last month, but it had a laid back type of feel.  

Hopefully they've upgraded their mattresses on their beds.  When it was the Fontan, it was like sleeping on a rock.  But if it's still like that, go the Mega Mart and buy a cheap air mattress.  

 

Have a great trip!  I've always loved my land trips to Cozumel.  You'll find the local people super nice and helpful.  And since your friend is fluent in Spanish, it will be very helpful.

 

Sherry

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Thank goodness there are others going somewhere that I can virtually go with them. 

 

I may just keep my sanity after all.

 

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Saint Greg said:

The snorkel I ordered came yesterday.

 

Keystand Full Face Snorkel... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0834XVQXL?ref=ppx_pop_mob_ap_share

 

I stopped by the post office today and setup a mail hold. 
 

Suitcase is packed. I washed my clothes from Cancun and just repacked half of them.

 

 That snorkel really was on sale. It's $10 more now then it was on Saturday.

 

Edited by Saint Greg
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Posted (edited)

I don't think I mentioned in my Cancun thread that the phone I'm using for pictures and videos these days is the iPhone 11 pro max. I traded in my XS Max last June. Really I could've done it as early as April but I waited until just before I went to Galveston to upgrade. Now I wish I would've done it in April or May because they changed the deal to where you have to wait 15 months now. So now I have to wait until September for another upgrade.

 

The store I do my trade in at didn't have my color (space grey). They only had like green and gold. So for the first time I did my trade in through the mail. I'll never do that again! I had no problems receiving my phone or sending my old one out. But...in July I got a really big cell phone bill. I called ATT. They said they never received my phone. I said that's nonsense. I sent them a picture of the box with the shipping label and confirmation they received the package. They apologized and put a credit on my account. @sid_9169, this is where your check writing would pay off. I have my bill paid automatically. So instead of getting that money back, I got a credit on my account and basically just had my phone bill paid for the rest of the year. 

 

August comes around. I receive a box from ATT. The letter inside states that I didn't send my phone back in time and they wouldn't be able to use it as a trade-in and they sent my phone back for me to keep. I dig deeper in the box and find the phone is not my phone. It was still in the dirty case it's prior owner used. I don't send my phone back like that. I take mine out of the case, polish it up, and return it in the original box. The person at the store usually comments that it looks brand new. 

 

I call ATT again. They say they don't know how I ended up with this phone but they can assure me they aren't going to be charging my account. I ask them what to do with the phone. They say they'll be contacting me about it. 

 

September rolls around. I still have the phone. I call ATT back. They say don't worry they aren't going to charge me for the phone. They'll get into contact with me on what to do with it.

 

I still have that phone in the box. I don't know what it is. It didn't have a thumbprint reader so it's probably an X or XS. I said if I still had it after a year I'll give it to a friend or family member who doesn't want to pay for an upgrade and see if they can use it. We're getting there.

 

 

Edited by Saint Greg
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Wow thats crazy! Im surprised AT&T doesnt just have you bring that random phone to one of their stores. Hope the owner of said phone isnt waiting on a trade in credit 🤨

 

My daughter got a new iphone a month ago via the mail bcuz the store didnt have the color she wanted either, but she didnt mail her old phone back for the credit, she took it into one of their stores and gave it to them. She recorded herself ( with new phone) handing them her old phone 🤣 

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Someone at work put in for vacation the first week of June. But instead of putting the entire week in one request, they requested each day individually. I suggested the boss approve every day but Wednesday.

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