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Dive Review of Scuba Club Cozumel in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan

Scuba Club Cozumel, Mar, 2012,

by Laura Austin, VA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 9 reports). Report 6469.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Bonaire, Roatan, Utila, Cayman, Florida, Palau
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, cloudy Seas calm, choppy, currents
Water Temp 78 to 80 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Surface with 700 psi or stay with divemaster (about 60 minutes for each dive)
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 1 stars
UW Photo Comments Cozumel--and drift diving--is difficult for photographers, particularly for macro, and for anyone interested in spending time in setting up their photos! Some excellent subjects, although everything moves too fast.
There is a table designated for cameras on each boat, but nothing on shore.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments This was our second visit to SCC--our first was five years ago. Although drift diving is not our favorite, it makes a nice change, and those currents must bring in a lot of food because so many of the fish (i.e. angels) have been super-sized! Also, it is near impossible to beat Cozumel for price and value.

Last time around we'd had Geiser as our divemaster for only one day, but he'd made such a favorable impression on us that we requested him again this time around and I'm glad to say he was with us for the entire week. Geiser has that combination of competency, patience, and knowledge that is the mark of all good divemasters--and he much prefers "marine life" to going deep just for the sake of saying you went deep. There was one nice gentleman with us for some of our time who had a big camera, but also some unfortunate bouyancy problems; I was impressed that Geiser spoke to him about it, as so many DMs would be more worried about annoying their customers and losing their tips than protecting the reefs. (The diver wasn't angry, btw, so I guess Geiser knows how to handle this situaiton.)

Most packages include two dives in the morning, unlimited shore diving (ironshore) and one night dive. They do have an afternoon wreck dive, the 2-tank twilight, and additionals night dives--all extra. The boats go out at 8:30 and return close to 1 p.m. or even later, so it can be pretty late by the time you finish lunch. SCC's flotilla of boats include all sizes and speeds, but none of them are all that fast and all of them have heads on board. IMHO, the one real drawback to SCC is its distance from the dive sites--at least 45 minutes each way.

We had a mix of weather while we were there--our first day diving was extremely choppy and getting back on the (small) boat was a challenge, as only the larger boats have lines for the divers. The portmaster closed all diving the next day, although they did let us do a shore dive in the late afternoon. It was so cold--I added a vest, skin and hood to my 3 mm, but was wishing I'd bought that 5 mm I've been thinking about. The rest of the week was partly-sunny to sunny and it warmed up quite a bit. Visibility was very good and got even better as the weather improved.

Scuba Club Cozumel is not a luxurious AI (those are further south) but here diving is not an afterthought but the main event. SCC is set up for divers and other divers are whom you will meet--an interesting mix of newbies, experienced, tech divers, and the Cozumel hard-core who have been coming to Cozumel for 20-odd years and would never go anywhere else.

The resort is close enough to downtown to walk--and very close to a huge Wall-mart type store where you can get food, drinks, sunscreen, clothes, etc. The rooms are large and have lots of space for all your dive gear, a balcony, and, most importantly, really hot water and lots of it. Also, everything is extremely clean. They have water coolers on each floor and provide all guests with a pitcher. Most rooms have a view; if you are concerned about noise, request a room away from the dive shop and the street side. All rooms come equipped with internet access--yeah!

The food is not fancy, but it is good and filling. The breakfast buffet has something for everyone (including lots of fruit); lunch (my favorite) is a salad bar, plus American or Mexican items; dinner is an appetizer, entree, and dessert. Drinks are extra. They have a Mexican-style BBQ once a week with a pinata.

The pool is tiny, there is a lovely row of hammocks facing the water (perfect for an afternoon snooze), and no beach. I can't imagine how bored the non-divers must be here, although you do meet spouses and they seemed happy enough.

Service is generally excellent. Bring your own towels for the boat and your own lock for your dive locker. They don't have a place to hang your wetsuit by the pier--I wore mine back to the room, rinsed it in the shower, and hung it on the balcony, so no worries. Nitrox is $10 extra per tank, but very few appeared to be using it.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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