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Cash and booking tours

Maryland
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93 posts
32 reviews
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Cash and booking tours

My husband and I will be in San Ignacio from May 22-27 and then in Caye Caulker until the 30th. I was planning to wait until I got to Belize to book excursions (cave tubing, kayaking, Caracol). However, since I would like to take minimal cash, I was wondering if most guides accept credit cards (Amex). It seems like there are plenty of tour guides and our schedules are flexible. Is it wise to wait to book excursions or better to do this now? Do any guides offer discounts for booking multiple excursions with them? I am willing to pay for quality but at the same time I want the price to be reasonable.

About how much cash does the average person need per day for food and drinks?

Cypress, Texas
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1. Re: Cash and booking tours

I can only speak about PACZ Tours (the #1 rated one)...

http://www.pacztours.net/index.html

They do take cards........MasterCard, Visa, and maybe AmX.

They are very low key and in no way will try to hustle you are try to get money up front. We thought we would need to book online and pay up front but they said just come in the day before and let them know which tour you want and then they picked us up at our resort. They wouldn't let us pay until after the tour was over.

Edited: 10 May 2010, 16:23
San Ignacio, Belize
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224 posts
30 reviews
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2. Re: Cash and booking tours

I would not recommend counting on using Amex credit card here. I know most take Visa and Master card. Your food expenses will depend on where you eat and the quality food you want to eat. I would say a day in advance for booking tours and we always use PACZ as we have found them dependable, reliable, knowledgeable, with competative prices.

San Ignacio, Belize
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276 reviews
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3. Re: Cash and booking tours

Amex will be so few and far between, that you might as well leave it at home. Pacz is the best, by far, and you can wait until the night before to book the tours you want. Pacz gives a discount if you do 3 tours with them. Ask them for a shirt too. If you'll be in Cayo, and want to try some of the great food we have, check out the Best of Cayo site for the best restaurants by category. http://www.bestofcayo.com

Food and drinks will run around $20 to $30us per person per day. On Caulker, be sure and do the Hol Chan Marine Reserve Tour. You get to snorkel Hol Chan, and swim with sharks and rays too.

Have a great time!

Placencia, Belize
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2,041 posts
12 reviews
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4. Re: Cash and booking tours

Also we should mention that US$ are accepted absolutely everywhere, even on roadside stalls, at the 2 for 1 rate. So no need to change currency. You will get change in Belize $ generally, though not always.

Maryland
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93 posts
32 reviews
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5. Re: Cash and booking tours

Thanks for all your replies. I emailed Pacz and they do accept Amex so that's good. We'll be in SI for 4 full days so we'll definitely do at least 3 tours. I sense that Pacz is the best for ATM (which hubby is not really interested in) but what about other tours (Caracol, cave tubing, kayaking/canoeing)? Pacz has a birding tour for $125 but this seems very expensive. Are there any other guides that offer good but more reasonably prices birding tours?

Davie, Florida
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6. Re: Cash and booking tours

is the price USD or BZD?

Maryland
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93 posts
32 reviews
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7. Re: Cash and booking tours

USD. Actually, the birding price is a bit confusing as it says $125 on one page and $150 on another. Either way it seems expensive, especially when you compare it with other tours they offer.

Davie, Florida
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8. Re: Cash and booking tours

did you ask them why its so high and did you attempt to negotiate it lower?

Cypress, Texas
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1,348 posts
190 reviews
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9. Re: Cash and booking tours

mdgirl76, I strongly recommend doing the Takal tour. It would be a shame to have been so close to a UNESCO World Heritage Site and not visit it. It's truly one of the greatest sites in the world.

It's a bargain at the price PACZ charges. I really don't see how they can do it at that price since it includes picking you up at your resort, transportation on both sides of the border, handling all the red tape on both sides of the border, payment of all fees including the departures taxes, migration fees, national parked fees, lunch, the same guide the whole trip, etc.

I know DrFeelAwesome likes the Cacaol tour as it includes a cave and swimming in the river, and while I would also recommend Cacaol and Xunantunich as wonderful sites, I think you've got to see Tikal when you are that close.

San Ignacio, Belize
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276 reviews
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10. Re: Cash and booking tours

Not sure what the going rates are for birding tours, but many places, like DuPlooy's, Chaa Creek, and other jungle lodges, have enough bird diversity on site to not warrant a tour for birding. Just a thought. We've had birder friends in Bullet Tree, and they simply take a walk with their binocs and have a great time finding birds.

Happy hunting!