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Thread: Mexico and Money

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    Default Mexico and Money

    So I head to Mexico this weekend and have no idea how to handle the money thing. We're staying at an all inclusive for a week at Playa del Carmen.

    How much should I tip each day? Is $10-15 USD enough if I just hand out a $1 tip each time? (Is $1 considered cheap?)

    What's a night out gonna cost? Taxi's, cover, drinks, etc...

    How about any kind of tours? We're talking about doing some deep sea fishing, touring this pyramid, and possibly a third outing but I'm not sure.

    How about getting cash while I'm there? I hear the resorts usually have ATM's at them so we can pull out interac or visa cash advance, do these rape us on transaction fees? (I'll be using debit)

    At this point I was thinking I'd just grab $100 USD in singles for tipping, then leave another $3-400 in my chequing account assuming the ATM's are a decent deal.

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    I usually bring about $500 total with me, about 100 in singles, rest in 5, 10s or 20s. I usually don't end up spending that much and sometimes decided to charge a few things on the credit card for trips and stuff, but really all you need is a dollar or two to tip here and there, and that's pretty much it if you stay at the resort.

    I never taken a taxi in mexico or gone to any clubs outside the resort so can't comment.

    For tours, just book them at the resort and they will have everything taken care of. The zipline track + mud buggy was my favorite outing in Mexico. Chichen Itza is good too if you like to see old stuff. Most tours are about 100 to 150 per person, so if you have cash, just use that. I never used interact there, don't see a reason for it.

    Almost all hotels have safes in your room. I never had any issues. Leave a couple bucks for the cleaning lady and your shit should be good. I usually just leave my money in there, or bring it with me in a waterproof pouch. It's small and fits into my swimming shorts and stuff so I never have to worry.

    Hope some of that helps.

    I am going myself again for the 4th time in December and going to be near playa myself, going to go check out Cozumel island which is right by playa apparently, that would be a cheap outing. Bring your snorkel gear, some places have pretty nice ocean life. Heard snorkeling is big around Cozumel....or at least I think I heard that
    Last edited by eblend; 10-16-2013 at 03:50 PM.

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    Mexico and money can boil down to this:

    You have it.
    They want it. And will constantly try to get it.

    But yeah, 10 bucks a day for your room staff and a few well placed $5-$10 tips at the bar will make your stay pleasant. I mean really, who cares if it's "a bit more than you need to", it's worth a few bucks to make a guys day and get better service.

    Every "all you can drink for only $50.00" shithole show or bar they try to promote is garbage, save your money. Or, spend $50.00 to fight for "free" sugar and piss in a cup.

    Ask how much cab rides are BEFORE you go.

    I'd budget 30-40 bucks a day for tips and incidentals and if you don't use it all, great.
    Last edited by JRSC00LUDE; 10-16-2013 at 04:10 PM.
    Originally posted by SJW
    Once again another useless post by JRSCOOLDUDE.
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    Default Re: Mexico and Money

    Originally posted by woodywoodford
    So I head to Mexico this weekend and have no idea how to handle the money thing. We're staying at an all inclusive for a week at Playa del Carmen.

    How much should I tip each day? Is $10-15 USD enough if I just hand out a $1 tip each time? (Is $1 considered cheap?)

    What's a night out gonna cost? Taxi's, cover, drinks, etc...

    How about any kind of tours? We're talking about doing some deep sea fishing, touring this pyramid, and possibly a third outing but I'm not sure.

    How about getting cash while I'm there? I hear the resorts usually have ATM's at them so we can pull out interac or visa cash advance, do these rape us on transaction fees? (I'll be using debit)

    At this point I was thinking I'd just grab $100 USD in singles for tipping, then leave another $3-400 in my chequing account assuming the ATM's are a decent deal.
    -$3-5 USD per night for room cleaning
    -$20 USD at the start of pool drinking per day
    -$1-$2 per round of drinks at the club
    -$5-$10 per meal for non-buffet
    -Negotiate cab fairs prior to getting in the cab
    -Negotiate any non-retail purchase

    The best rates for exchange are through banks before you leave but its the highest risk. Exchange half of what you plan to spend before you go down there and the rest at the resort. The resort rates are usually not too bad.

    The most important thing is to tip. Tip like a mo fo. Tip as much as you can absolutely afford. Tips rule the service industry down there. If you tip well, you will have a better time.

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    Last time I was there I tipped a couple bucks a day to housekeeping or room service. At the bar we'd usually hang around the swim up bar most of the day so $5/$10 in the morning and then another $5/$10 later in the afternoon. Too much of a pain in the ass having a $1 bill every time you order a drink.

    Also consider getting peso's since they're plastic and won't get destroyed when you're hammered going for a dip in the pool with cash in your pockets

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    Tip maids and bartenders more at the beginning of your stay than the end. They'll notice and give better service.

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    Originally posted by JRSC00LUDE


    Every "all you can drink for only $50.00" shithole show or bar they try to promote is garbage, save your money. Or, spend $50.00 to fight for "free" sugar and piss in a cup.


    I didn't mind Coco Bongo, but like you mentioned the alcohol was shitty though. The show wasn't bad for what it was, better than most things you see in a bar lol

    I think in total it was like $50-70? for free booze, and a bus ride there and back. Then you can opt for a reserved section and have a waiter just constantly bring you drinks.
    I'd recommend getting the reserved spot if you do go... cause it is a zoo trying to get drinks

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    Originally posted by pf0sh0



    I didn't mind Coco Bongo, but like you mentioned the alcohol was shitty though. The show wasn't bad for what it was, better than most things you see in a bar lol

    I think in total it was like $50-70? for free booze, and a bus ride there and back. Then you can opt for a reserved section and have a waiter just constantly bring you drinks.
    I'd recommend getting the reserved spot if you do go... cause it is a zoo trying to get drinks
    Do the reserved parts cost extra? We're planning on heading there for one night, still not sure if it'll be the Cancun location or just stay in Playa (supposedly Cancun's is way better)

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    Originally posted by JRSC00LUDE
    Mexico and money can boil down to this:

    You have it.
    They want it. And will constantly try to get it.

    But yeah, 10 bucks a day for your room staff and a few well placed $5-$10 tips at the bar will make your stay pleasant. I mean really, who cares if it's "a bit more than you need to", it's worth a few bucks to make a guys day and get better service.
    That's such a Canadian/American mentality, lol. Tips don't equal better service.
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    Originally posted by woodywoodford


    Do the reserved parts cost extra? We're planning on heading there for one night, still not sure if it'll be the Cancun location or just stay in Playa (supposedly Cancun's is way better)

    They just tell you to tip them at the end... So I think we gave the chick like $30-40 bucks.

    edit: I don't think you book the reserved part through the hotel, I think they just ask you if you want to do that when you get to coco bongo

    Originally posted by bitteeinbit

    That's such a Canadian/American mentality, lol. Tips don't equal better service.
    And tipping does get you better service... especially at the bar. ie. faster service, stronger drinks

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    In the Latin/Caribbean places it 100% will. Cuba was the same, we tipped our bartender the first night (a huge 2$) and he got our drinks ahead of everyone else that night.
    Last edited by revelations; 10-16-2013 at 08:43 PM.

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    Originally posted by woodywoodford


    Do the reserved parts cost extra? We're planning on heading there for one night, still not sure if it'll be the Cancun location or just stay in Playa (supposedly Cancun's is way better)
    There will likely be reps at your resort (by the pool area?) selling the Coco Bongo experience. If you buy the tickets through them, you'll get transportation to/from plus the VIP seating area.

    As mentioned numerous times above, you may think you've already paid for an 'all you can drink' vip entry, but you will not be served unless your constantly tipping OR paying a large tip up front to your server.

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    Originally posted by eblend
    I usually bring about $500 total with me, about 100 in singles, rest in 5, 10s or 20s. I usually don't end up spending that much and sometimes decided to charge a few things on the credit card for trips and stuff, but really all you need is a dollar or two to tip here and there, and that's pretty much it if you stay at the resort.
    this is perfect advice.

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    Even Pleasure Paradise or Pleasure Palace...whatever its called in Playa takes credit cards.

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    Originally posted by bitteeinbit

    That's such a Canadian/American mentality, lol. Tips don't equal better service.
    Says the guy who's never been to Mexico. Or Cuba. Or Dominican. Or Vietnam. Or Thailand. Or Laos. Or Cambodia. Or.....

    Or maybe he has and just has never realized there is a difference since he's a cheapskate and wouldn't know?

    Personally, for the few extra dollars, I like never waiting. Guess my million dollar smile and winning personality just isn't quite enough to get by on without a little palm grease.
    Last edited by JRSC00LUDE; 10-16-2013 at 06:44 PM.
    Originally posted by SJW
    Once again another useless post by JRSCOOLDUDE.
    Originally posted by snowcat
    Don't let the e-thugs and faggots get to you when they quote your posts and write stupid shit.

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    Originally posted by bitteeinbit

    That's such a Canadian/American mentality, lol. Tips don't equal better service.
    What?

    I fly to Mexico twice per year and know first hand the difference in service a $5 tip can make.


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    Originally posted by BigShow


    There will likely be reps at your resort (by the pool area?) selling the Coco Bongo experience. If you buy the tickets through them, you'll get transportation to/from plus the VIP seating area.

    As mentioned numerous times above, you may think you've already paid for an 'all you can drink' vip entry, but you will not be served unless your constantly tipping OR paying a large tip up front to your server.
    Word, Fuck that Coco Bongo place. We paid $50USD X 4 people to one of the sales guys out front to get in and that was with the promise of VIP and bottle service. He gave us wrist bands and once inside the street guy buggers off and then you're back to having to pay for a decent table and bottle service.

    One of the guys from my party tipped the guy that showed us to our table $5 USD after he begged for it and the guy got so offended. We said that we would tip after we got service, not before, that was a mistake. He made a big deal out of it and spoke to some other Mexicans that were around us at another table and before you know it they were harassing my buddies wife to the point we had to leave

    Love Mexico but the party scene is grimy and the tips are demanded, not earned.

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    I am in mexico right now. first night I tipped $5 for the room staff. Noticed I had 1 extra bottle of water... 2nd night, I forgot to tip, and I did NOT have an extra bottle of water!!

    I don't think tipping makes a difference at all, but it's a nice gesture, and will make the staff happy.

    europeans don't tip, neither do people in japan, china, australia.

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    Originally posted by eblend

    I am going myself again for the 4th time in December and going to be near playa myself, going to go check out Cozumel island which is right by playa apparently, that would be a cheap outing. Bring your snorkel gear, some places have pretty nice ocean life. Heard snorkeling is big around Cozumel....or at least I think I heard that
    The snorkeling is apparently quite good, the scuba diving is VERY good. but there's a couple knot current, so you have to watch where you're ending up.
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    Originally posted by JRSC00LUDE


    Says the guy who's never been to Mexico. Or Cuba. Or Dominican. Or Vietnam. Or Thailand. Or Laos. Or Cambodia. Or.....

    Or maybe he has and just has never realized there is a difference since he's a cheapskate and wouldn't know?

    Personally, for the few extra dollars, I like never waiting. Guess my million dollar smile and winning personality just isn't quite enough to get by on without a little palm grease.
    I live in Cambodia

    I should have elaborated. I'm not saying tipping won't get you better service in this situation (especially since it seems it's an all-inclusive resort). I'm saying the practice itself is stupid and that you won't necessarily get better service because of tipping. The reason they suddenly work harder (and you get to feel like a boss after tipping some guy in the DR) is that they have Americans and Canadians showing up dumping money after every action workers take. Pour drink=tip. Clean room=tip. So in a weird Pavlovian way, they'll work if they get a tip, but if they don't the brain will go back to siesta mode and sloppy work. Tipping is a stupid practice. It's just an excuse for employers to pay workers a shitty wage. Tipping isn't standard in most of Europe, yet when I lived there, I experienced service that was just as good as the service we get in Canada. How come? Why should you tip a bartender, but not tip a flight attendant? It's a retarded practice which is unfortunately being semi-exported to other parts of the world (where it's never been common practice) by well-meaning but clueless North Americans (ie: most countries you mentioned). Tipping wasn't introduced until a few years ago in Cambodia. Luckily it's still in its infancy and doesn't have a big foothold as North Americans don't make up a huge portion of visitors/expats (and locals generally don't tip). Now, I think the practice of tipping in Mexican and Dominican resorts is pretty engrained by now, so I'm not saying the guy shouldn't tip. He most definitely should. I tip wherever it's common practice to tip. I simply find the practice absurd as well-trained (and compensated) staff will provide excellent service regardless of tips.

    Then again, my witty charm and hunkish good looks have never failed to put me first in line for drinks, regardless of the staff's gender...

    Anyways, sorry for derailing the thread.
    Last edited by bitteeinbit; 10-16-2013 at 09:47 PM.
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