Review: Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula with Gap Adventures (Part 4 of 4)
This hub belongs to a 4-part review of my trip to the Yucatan Peninsula with Gap Adventures. To read Part 1, click here.
More Options for Solo Travel
9 Tips for Travelling with Gap Adventures to the Yucatan Peninsula
1) Be flexible and look for deals. Gap Adventures offers last minute discounts on some of its trips—a few days or weeks prior to the start of a trip. Two of the girls on my tour saved $400 booking Gap Adventures through Expedia.ca.
2) Bring some local currency. US currency is recommended on the Gap Adventures website. However, once you get to the location, you will need to have the local currency on hand in order to buy meals, souvenirs, etc. Resort areas, such as the hotel district in Cancun, do accept US money, but remember that most trips enter local areas. For example, in the jungle of Palenque, the locals will not accept US dollars (only Mexican pesos). If you bring some local currency with you, it can help reduce stress after arriving at your location. That way, you can enjoy a nice drink or meal upon arrival without worrying about obtaining the right currency. Local currency gets you off to a running start.
3) Wear a sweater on overnight buses. There was only one overnight bus on the trip, but the air condition is at full power. You can really feel the difference during May and June (the hottest months in Mexico)
4) Keep change for tips. Bring $1 USD bills with you for tips. You can use these small bills to tip services from taxis to servers if you run out of pesos. And, you can even use one dollar bills to purchase souvenirs in the more touristy areas of Mexico such as Cancun or Isla Mujeres.
5) Buy water. Purchase water bottles along the way, as the water out of the tap is often unfit to drink.
6) Bring mosquito repellent. You will need bug repellent when you travel away from the coast, especially in the jungle where malaria has been found.
7) Bring suntan lotion. The sun is strong, especially by the water. Protect your skin!
8) Barter! Yes, I believe it is important to support local business; however, this doesn’t mean you should settle for the first price that is offered to you. It is often possible to cut the first price in half. Don’t buy the sucker price. If the shop owner isn’t willing to lower the price, do not be afraid to walk away. There will most likely be the same or a similar product a few shops down. For example, two of my companions on the trip wanted to buy a hammock. One of them asked how much a hammock was. The shop owner said 1600 pesos for one hammock. When asked if he would lower the price, the owner said no. My fellow traveler walked out the store, only to be asked to come back into the store moments later. After some negotiating, two members of the group got two hammocks for 700 pesos… less than a quarter of the original price per hammock!
9) Visit a travel clinic. It would be wise to visit a travel clinic before departing on your trip to determine if any vaccines are recommended for the region when you are planning to travel there. Also, the clinic can make you aware of any precautions you should take so that you remain healthy on the trip.
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Would I recommend this trip?
Absolutely! If you are at all hesitant to go to another part of the world because you wouldn’t feel safe to go there by yourself, consider traveling with a group. Not only will you get to visit some amazing places, but you will also meet some amazing people.
I would love to hear about the neat places you have traveled to and your experiences with group travel (if you have any). Please let me know by leaving a comment below.
Useful for Travel
- Part 1 of Review: Why Mexico? Why Gap Adventures? The Trip
- Part 2 of Review: Overall Impression, Cost, Sightseeing
- Part 3 of Review: Accommodations, Travel Companions
- Part 4 of Review: Tips for Travelling with GAP, My Recommendation
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